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· Volume II Issue IV

Ladies and Gentlemen, allow me to brag my dear Alma Mater “Silahis ang Katulad mong nagsabog ng liwanag”. As the first line in the MSU Hymn that is emotionally sung by all graduates of the university, it reverberates not only during the singing of it in the Dimaporo Gymnasium but perhaps until the last breath of an “MSUjuan”.  

Well there are reasons why an “MSUjuan” is proud and loud. Aside from its expected and proven quality education what raises the MSU System bar of excellence compared to other state universities is its resiliency of remaining to be a center of peace and development amidst the differentiated political idealisms in Mindanao particularly in Lanao del Sur where is it rooted. It has endured the turmoil brought by extremisms. Evidently, all of you here gathered today has witnessed how our dear Alma Mater defended its essence as a university despite the posing threats of May 23, 2017, the Marawi Siege. MSU has not withered. It has stood still, raising the banner of Peace and Education as a commitment to attain peace and sustainable development in the region.

Now, MSU in its Golden year, from the two-hundred and eighty-two (282) enrolled students in 1962 it has never slacken its grip to its mission statement which is to be committed to the attainment of peace and sustainable development in the MINSUPALA region through setting the standards of excellence in Science, Arts, Technology and accelerate the economic, cultural, socio-political, and agro-industrial development of the Muslim and other cultural groups for them to be integrated and mainstreamed in the national community (Mindanao State University System 2013).

That is why MSUjuan is the light. The light that shines and inspires people to value diversity and actually extract strength from that diversity to propel for progress while ensuring that everyone has a comprehensive grasp in preserving and promoting multicultural heritage and conserve its natural resources imbued with morality and spirituality.

Locally grounded, Globally Angled!

To be able to compete globally, MSU should tirelessly exude excellent work ethics. In the first place peace and development are products of good attitude. We need to encourage innovations, something that everybody can emulate and take inspiration from. For instance, we should be able to show to others that we support the development of each other. Being genuinely happy for someone else’s success without fostering envy in our hearts and efficient appropriation of budget to researches and projects that would definitely push the institution, students and faculty alike, to believe that they can compete externally, is a manifestation of championing peace and development for global competitiveness.

“Ng pag-asa’t hangarin ng pag-unlad” First, people hear this, the conceptualization and realization of MSU-IPDM or the Mindanao State University-Institute for Peace and Development in Mindanao which serves as avenue for concrete platforms to talk about peace and building peace amongst the students has reached many students advocating for unity amidst differences in perspectives politically and culturally.

“Ang pook ng Mindanao tinanglaw at pinalad” Second, if you are a millennial or even those who adapted 21st century learning styles, for sure you have not missed browsing the facebook page of the overhauled The University Library, MSU Main. Its objectives to strengthen relationship and bridge better connections between the library and its clientele has reached not just the regional attention but also the national arena, in fact was given recognition through its “Moving Boundaries”: Re-imagining, Re-tooling and Recreating (3Rs) the University Library, as the 2018 Outstanding Philippine Association of Academic/Research Library Program of the Year Award. Its creative and unique way getting everyone’s back in using the library and enjoying every single perks has developed into a social media trendy. To mention Thotolan Ko Agamaniyog or the storytelling of history and local folklores rekindled online MSUjuans all over the world.

“Nang ika’y isilang na dakila ang hangad” Third, the Melting Pot of the South, peace is here. The university has been a shoal of various ministries, churches, and religions such as Born Again Christians, Iglesia ni Cristo, Seventh Day Adventist, Roman Catholic and of course Islam. Other religious ministries are allowed to perform their beliefs inside the campus without prejudice. Respect and love exist between religious groups. Ladies and gentlemen peace is really here. 

“Ating ipagkapuri itong Pamantasan”. Fourth, the university has honored scholars in the field of Fisheries and its related sciences organized and funded by the Belgian Federal Government which is a competitive scholarship program of two (2) years. Scholars are privileged to be educated in the three (3) universities. Fourteen (13) alumni from the College of Fisheries have finished their Master’s Degree with distinction of whom seven (7) are faculty of the college. Imagine the vast and enriched knowledge they have and how these gradually been transferred to the students of the college. Faculty honed by MSU education then with global information, ladies and gentlemen we are Global.

Locally grounded, Globally Angled!

“Ang buhay at pag-ibig sa kanya’y iaalay”. This goes to all MSUjuans out there. The true-blooded MSUjuan is not just about achievements and positions. Not even political influence or academic contributions. These are ephemeral. MSUjuan is who consistently shows morality and spirituality. Someone, who understands diversity and turning this diversity into strength in promoting peace and development for global competitiveness. 

“Saan man naroroon ay bigyang karangalan”. Our national personification is “Juan dela Cruz” and we are MSUans. We are just the perfect combination. Hence, fellow MSUjuans we may vary in latitude and longitude but one thing for sure we will meet at some points and talk about our greatness, successes and even failures. And will consistently mention how MSU our dear Alma Mater has taught us to hurdle difficulties in life and become resilient surviving the complex world.

Peace, putting others first before self and becoming an inspiration to all for genuine respect, love, patience and camaraderie. This is what we will always bear in mind and in heart for us to compete globally. 

Development is not perhaps just the things we see eventually after an effort but it is how we have given ourselves a chance to be better people equipped with moral values and love for the country. 

MSUjuan Locally Grounded, Globally Angled!

“Dakilang paraalan Pamantasang Mindanao”.