Silliman University will establish the Dr. Mariano Lao Global Studies Center to offer short courses and certificate programs online, enabling students from anywhere in the world to experience the University’s whole-person education.
The Center is named after Dr. Mariano C. Lao, a 2018 Outstanding Sillimanian Awardee who pledged to donate P20 million for the Center’s facilities and equipment.
SU President Dr. Betty Cernol-McCann unveiled the plan to establish the Center during The President’s Hour, a fundraising event last Aug. 26 at Silliman Hall.
SU aims to position itself at the forefront of international and online distance learning by offering short-term academic programs. The Center will also help expand the University’s reach of its existing academic programs through ICT-enabled strategies.
The programs that can be completed online, including short courses and certificate programs, will include topics that are interdisciplinary and globally-oriented to develop new competencies among learners.
SU also aims to enhance and expand its partnerships and linkages through the Center, as it plans to develop academic programs and courses in collaboration with its network of alumni who are professionals in various fields, and its institutional partners in the country and abroad.
Lao supports the Center’s establishment as his way of “giving back” to his alma mater. Earlier, he established the Dr. Mariano Lao Innovation, Creation & Invention Laboratory; the Mariano & Lina Lao Hall Activity Center; the Mariano & Lina Lao Scholarship Grant; the Dr. Mariano Lao SOS Fund; the Dr. Mariano Lao Educational & Emergency Support Fund; and the Dr. Mariano Lao Excellence Awards in Online Teaching & Learning.
The Center will have its main facility at the Portal East building. (Jameela Mendoza/OIP)