Total of two thousand students coming from public and private tertiary education schools in the city attended the morning and afternoon sessions of the 7th University Town (UTown) Summit at Lou-‘is Restaurant and Resort on November 24.
Committee Chair on Education Councilor Jovic Baluyot thanked organizers of the summit and reiterated the need for stakeholders to collaborate for the good of the community.
City Mayor Francis Anthony S. Garcia enumerated the city’s programs that are anchored on the vision of becoming a university town. He cited the successful implementation of the K to 12 Program, the smoking ban for a healthy lifestyle, and the Iskolar ng Bataan that has already put some 12,000 students in school. Further, he cited the link between the city’s Barangay and School Learning Hubs Programs which aim to develop computer-literate individuals, and GenPact, a business-process outsourcing company that offers hundreds of jobs to Bataan residents. Currently, Bataan National High School Learning Hub has 200 computer units donated by Grand Innovasia Concept Corporation while City of Balanga National High School (COBNHS) has 75 units from Petron and San Miguel Foundations.
Some other projects being contemplated include putting Grab Trikes onto the city streets and closing one lane of Enrique Garcia, Sr. Avenue (Four Lanes) on Saturdays and Sundays from 4:00 to 8:00AM to enable residents to use the area for jogging and other physical exercises.
The UTown Summit is an annual event sponsored by the city government to discuss the latest developments regarding the University Town vision and to foster camaraderie among college students. It was conceived by then Mayor and now 2nd District of Bataan Representative Jose Enrique S. Garcia, III. The occasion is usually graced by well-known speakers in the fields of entrepreneurship, business and personality development. The aim is to push students past the current industrial challenges and prepare them to be globally competitive professionals.
This year’s Guest Speaker, Mr. Raymond Abrea, CPA, MBA and Tax Reform Adviser for the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), inspired his audience with his nuggets of wisdom that highlighted belief in oneself and in one’s dream. He encouraged students not to fear mistakes and problems, but to treat them as channels of opportunity to become better and stronger persons able to contribute to the good of the community.
Participating schools in this year’s Summit were: Bataan Peninsula State University, Bataan Heroes Memorial College, Eastwoods Professional College of Science & Technology, Tomas del Rosario College, Philippines Women’s University, Asia-Pacific College of Advanced Studies (APCAS), AMA-CLC, Bataan Maritime Institute and Microcity College of Business and Technology.