GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews / 19 June) – The four-year-old University of the Philippines-Manila School of Health Sciences (UP-SHS) South Cotabato extension unit in nearby Koronadal City will offer starting this school year a degree program in nursing as it continues with the implementation of its phased development plan.
South Cotabato Gov. Daisy Avance-Fuentes said Thursday they are currently screening the prospective scholars for the nursing program, which is part of the second phase of the UP extension unit’s ladderized medical curriculum.
She said most of the scholars will be taken from among the graduates of the extension school’s midwifery program.
The province’s 10 towns and lone city, as well as other local government units (LGUs) in the region, may also nominate their own scholars through a sponsored scheme, she said.
“The screening and selection of scholars will be handled by the sponsoring LGU but they will have to qualify or pass the admission requirements set by the extension school,” she said.
Fuentes, who met with university officials earlier this week, said the UP-SHS extension unit’s development is currently on track, especially with its education component.
She said the opening of the nursing degree program starting this school year forms part of the phased implementation of its medical degree track, which was set with the unit’s establishment four years ago.
“In a few years, we will have a complete degree program in medicine here,” the governor said.
In the last two years, the UP extension unit has posted a 100-percent passing rate for its midwifery graduates.
The unit’s ladderized scheme, which has integrated mandatory community work for its graduates, leads to a Doctor of Medicine degree program.
The provincial government of South Cotabato and the UP System administration agreed in late 2010 to open an extension unit to address the area’s need for more quality health workers.
The UP-SHS campus presently caters to scholars coming from Koronadal City and the South Cotabato area, as well as Sarangani Province, North Cotabato and the Autonomous Region and Muslim Mindanao.
The UP extension campus in Koronadal was the third health sciences unit established by UP Manila and the first in Mindanao. It is the UP system’s second campus in the island.
UP Manila’s School of Health Sciences has a main campus in Palo, Leyte and an extension campus in Baler, Aurora.