GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews / 14 July) – The Mindanao State University (MSU) campus here has deferred the opening this school year of its College of Medicine due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.
Dr. Anshari Ali, chancellor, said they decided “not to push through” with the planned operationalization of the new college starting school year 2020-2021 due to the lack of enough time to prepare for the start of formal classes this August.
He specifically cited the need to establish “a tailored-fit online learning environment” for the medical program.
“In as much as we desire to cater to the public demand, the university is apparently constrained to open the Doctor of Medicine program in the school year 2020-2021,” he said in a statement.
Due to the COVID-19 threat, Ali said the university had calibrated its curriculum and adopted online learning modalities for its 31 degree programs.
These were under its eight colleges, which include the College of Law and Graduate School, and extension units.
“Rest assured that MSU-GenSan upholds its firm commitment to provide medical education, particularly for the people of Soccsksargen,” the chancellor said.
The MSU system’s Board of Regents issued early this year Resolution No. 507, series of 2020, allowing the proposed College of Medicine here to open starting August as an extension of the MSU-main campus’s (in Marawi City) College of Medicine.
University officials, in coordination with South Cotabato first district Rep. Shirlyn Bañas-Nograles, decided to utilize classrooms of the Graduate School for its classes pending the completion of its own building within the extension campus at the city proper.
The construction of the College of Medicine’s STEAMS (Science, Technology, Engineering, Agriculture, Mathematics and Sustainability) building, which was supported by Nograles and Senator Emmanuel Pacquiao, started last February and already had an accomplishment of about 25 percent as of mid-June.
The university said over 50 students had signified interest to enroll while the Philippine Medical Association-General Santos City chapter has expressed its full support to the operations of the new college. (MindaNews)