Commission on Higher Education Chairman Popoy de Vera (left). (CHED photo)

MANILA – Commission on Higher Education (CHED) Chairman Popoy de Vera recently led a High-level Higher Education Partnership Mission in Canada to expand opportunities to engage in academic and research partnerships on health sciences, renewable energy, agriculture, engineering and technology, data science and disaster risk management, among others.

“CHED’s mission to Canada is a testament to the strong collaboration between Canada and the Philippines on higher education internationalization,” de Vera.

The mission, which hosted about 20 Canadian education stakeholders during the Philippines-Canada Education Networking at the Philippine Embassy in Ottawa on March 29, 2022, provided an opportunity for CHED and delegates to visit and meet with nine post-secondary institutions in Ottawa and Toronto such as Carleton University, University of Ottawa, Algonquin College, Ryerson University, York University, University of Toronto, Niagara College, Seneca College, and Mohawk College. 

“The success of CHED’s mission to Canada is rooted in an appreciation of Canada’s strengths in education delivery and research across disciplines and a shared vision to foster internationalization between Canadian and Philippine higher education institutions,” Canadian Ambassador Peter MacArthur said.

He added: “So we look forward to further enabling more trans-Pacific brain circulation between students and faculty.”

“In recent years, the significant growth of academic and research partnerships between Canadian and Philippine higher education institutions has fostered cross-border collaboration between countries, expanding access to international education opportunities to Canadian and Philippine students and faculty,” de Vera said.

De Vera was accompanied by CHED Region I OIC-Director Danilo B. Bose, Trade Commissioner for Education of the Embassy of Canada in the Philippines Angel Cachuela, and officials from eight (8) Philippine higher education institutions (HEIs) namely, Mariano Marcos State University, Iloilo Science and Technology University, West Visayas State University, Southern Leyte State University, World Citi Colleges Aeronautical and Technological College, Tarlac Agricultural University, Tarlac State University, and Universidad de Dagupan.

He signed Joint Statements on Higher Education Cooperation with Universities Canada and Colleges and Institutes Canada to expand education collaboration in areas such as student mobility, indigenous peoples education, research aligned with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, faculty and staff development, Microcredentials, applied research, and inclusion of in-demand skills in the curriculum. 

Letters of Intent were also signed by Universities Canada and Colleges and Institutes Canada with the eight Philippine higher education institutions (HEIs) on top of the 11 memoranda of understanding (MOU) forged between Canadian and Philippine institutions in various discipline areas over the course of the pandemic. 

CHED also signed a Joint Statement on Higher Education Cooperation with Ryerson University on March 30, 2022, and an MOU on Academic Collaboration with York University on March 31, 2022, to initiate collaboration at the post-secondary and post-graduate levels. 

De Vera, shortly after his return to the Philippines, virtually joined Canadian Ambassador to the Philippines His Excellency Peter MacArthur on April 6 to witness the signing of the MOU between WCC Aeronautical and Technological College with British Columbia Institute of Technology on aircraft maintenance engineering and avionics. (PR)