MOEYS lauds partnership with SEARCA and RUA to build capacities of Cambodian HEIs
50 HEI participants pose with HE Touch Visalsok, MOEYS Undersecretary of State, 2nd row, center; Dr. Ngo Bunthan, RUA Rector and SEARCA Governing Board member, beside him; and workshop organizers and resource persons
Siem Reap, Cambodia – H.E. Touch Visalsok, Undersecretary of State of the Cambodia Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport (MOEYS), cited his ministry's partnership with the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA) and the Royal University of Agriculture (RUA) based in Phnom Penh as a good model on capacity building for Cambodian academics.
He said this as he opened the five-day Workshop on Developing Fundable Research Project Proposals in Agricultural and Rural Development on 28 February 2017 at the Angkor Paradise Hotel here, where 50 officials, faculty, and staff from 11 higher education institutions (HEI) in Cambodia signed up.
Dr. Ngo Bunthan, RUA Rector and SEARCA Governing Board member, assists one group in a simulation exercise.Dr. Nith Bunlay, Deputy Director General for Higher Education and Coordinator of the Higher Education Quality and Capacity Improvement Project (HEQCIP) at MOEYS, elaborated that in organizing this workshop, his project is supporting logistics and administrative arrangements, while SEARCA provides the technical inputs. He thanked RUA, which is a recipient of SEARCA's Institutional Development Assistance (IDA), for serving as a bridge between MOEYS and SEARCA. RUA is well-represented in the workshop with 18 of the total 50 participants comprising officials, faculty members, and staff.
Dr. Ngo Bunthan, RUA Rector and Cambodian Representative to SEARCA's Governing Board, welcomed the participants and guests to the workshop. He said that related to this workshop, SEARCA has supported RUA to develop the second of two strategic plans it has implemented since 2000. The first strategic plan (2000-2010) focused on transforming traditional study and curriculum development at the university, while the second (2010-2025) focuses on capacity building. He said RUA hopes to be a research university by the end of 2025.
Dr. Cadiz reads a message from Dr. Gil C. Saguiguit, Jr., SEARCA Director, while partners led by HE Touch Visalsok listen.Dr. Gil C. Saguiguit, Jr., SEARCA Director represented by Dr. Maria Celeste H. Cadiz, Program Head for Knowledge Management, expressed keen appreciation of the initiative of RUA and MOEYS in requesting for and organizing the workshop, which in his opinion is highly relevant so much so that SEARCA hopes to offer it too to neighboring transition economies with the same partnership modality.
A highly experience- and practice-based workshop, the learning event led by Prof. Wilfredo B. Carada of the University of the Philippines Los Baños College of Public Affairs and Development (UPLB CPAfD) has kept the participants busy identifying and analyzing ARD problems; deliberating on objectives, interventions, and prioritizing these; packaging fundable project proposals; and deliberating on actions for their future projects and university research and extension programs.
Aside from Prof. Carada, the team of resource persons includes Prof. Nelson Jose Vincent B. Querijero, Ms. Rhea L. Gumasing, and Ms. Jaymee A. Cabangbang, also of UPLB CPAfD.
Training Management is provided by Ms. Nova A. Ramos, Program Specialist; Ms. Ma. Cristina L. Decena, Office Assistant; and Dr. Cadiz; with RUA counterparts led by Dr. Mom Seng, Vice Rector; and MOEYS counterparts led by Dr. Nith. (Maria Celeste H. Cadiz)