Initial Meeting. Last January 9, 2018, technical assistance was formally sought by the Municipality of Rizal through a formal letter signed by their local Chief Executive – Mayor Antonino A. Aurelio. An initial meeting was then scheduled the next day with Dean Armin B. Sarthou, Jr., Dr. Nappy Navarra (Research Program Director), Asst. Prof. Jose Antonio Bimbao and Arch. Edra Belga (URA 2 for Extension Program). During the initial meeting, specific technical needs of the Municipality of Rizal has been discussed.
It was determined and was mutually agreed upon that the College will provide interventions for the following (conceptual) projects:
The technical assistance project was seen as a good opportunity for the students to engaged actual projects and actual client. It was also a way for the College to fulfill the mandate of the University to provide technical assistance (extension) services to organizations and communities outside the University. Subsequent meetings were facilitated and coordinated later on by the Extension Program through the supervision of Asst. Prof. Olivia Alma Sicam (Extension Program Director). The classes and supervising faculty members included:
Academic Field Activity. An academic field activity (AFA) sponsored by the Municipality of Rizal was conducted last February 3, 2018, in order for the students and faculty supervisors to ascertain actual site conditions within Tayak Hill and in other sites of interest in Rizal Town. The AFA was led by Mayor Antonino Aurelio himself, as he personally welcomed and accompanied the UPCA contingent around their municipality.
Design and Planning Charette. A month later, a planning and design charrette (workshop) followed on March 5, 2018. Ten (10) officials from the Municipality of Rizal headed by Mayor Aurelio visited the College to participate and provide crucial inputs to the initial analysis, and plans presented by the students. Representatives from the Municipality of Rizal’s sponsor for their Ecological Center – My Shelter Foundation, and an observer from the University of Cincinnati were also present. The charrette schedule was divided into two sessions. The morning session focused on the planning and design of their Ecological Center at Tayak Hill Nature and Adventure Park. This session was facilitated by Prof. Del Castillo and Prof. Bimbao with their participating AR 55 and LA 132 classes. The afternoon session focused on the macro-planning analysis of the Municipality of Rizal, with special focus on its New Government Center (NGC). This session was facilitated by Prof. Araneta, Prof. Varona, Prof. De Chavez and Prof. Bimbao with their participating AR 162 and LA 132 classes. The planning and design charrette left the students with valuable inputs from the ‘client’ about how they can improve and deepen their designs so that they will be more responsive to actual clients’ needs.
Final Presentation & Exhibit. A final presentation, critique and exhibit of the various student outputs was held last May 18, 2018. Again, officials of the Municipality of Rizal’s local government unit (LGU), headed by Mayor Aurelio were in attendance to provide their evaluation of the student’s works. The response and feedback from the LGU officials were overwhelmingly positive. The College faculty and students were delighted to hear that their hardwork for the semester had paid off.
One of the faculty supervisors - Prof. Del Castillo notes in his e-mail to the faculty the concrete milestones of the project, as well as the importance of such extension work:
Excerpt from Prof. Del Castillo’s E-mail:
“The classes of LArch 132 (under Jose Antonio Bimbao & Dan Villajuan), Arch 162 (under Maureen Araneta & Faith Varona) and Arch 55 (my section), tackled various concerns of the town. Arch 162 presented urban design possibilities. LArch 132 presented more detailed possibilities in various locations in the town. Arch 55 and LARch 132 presented various iterations of how they can build a showcase MRF for their (so far) lone tourist attraction (Tan-aw Park, a forest reserve amid the foothills of Mts. Banahaw and Cristobal).
When we presented the works of our classes to Mayor Antonino Aurelio and town officials last 18 May (F), their response was that of elation and surprise. They expressed that they never knew how rich their town was in terms of possibilities with their resources. In short, the students' presentations gave them new dreams, new possibilities, new aspirations for their town. This reaction is where I would say we draw our fulfilment from.
In turn, I was enlightened with the realization that we could do this on a regular basis. Having accomplished our teaching targets with our classes, we have also hit two more targets -- serving our people, and provided students with design and research topics that are real and not hypothetical.”
Welcome to UPCA's Extension Program - Blog. You will find here the latest news, events and projects of the College.