The Training-Workshop on Quantitative and Qualitative Research Designs and Data Analysis held its last lecture and coaching session on 25 January 2022. The College of Development Communication of the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB-CDC) facilitated the training as part of the customized training for scholars organized by SEARCA through the Education and Collective Learning Department (ECLD).
Asst. Prof. Rosa Pilipinas F. Francisco, Training Coordinator from UPLB-CDC, provided the training synthesis at the end of the final session and highlighted that the training was a journey with the scholars starting at different locations or stages of their research. The sessions aimed to give directions for the scholars' research and helped them discover answers in their unique research journey. The training prepared scholars for their future roles as research managers of multidisciplinary teams. It likewise provided an appreciation of the different research methodologies and the value of going through various research designs.
Ms. Myint Myat Moe studying PhD in Agricultural and Resource Economics at Kasetsart University shared that she has learned a lot and appreciated the coaching sessions as these served as her guide. Mr. Cipto Nugroho studying PhD in Plant Pathology at UPLB agreed with Ms. Moe that he enjoyed the coaching sessions best and that he was able to discuss with scholars from different fields and countries. Ms. Sarini Ahmad Wakid studying PhD in Biodiversity and Conservation of Natural Resources at Universiti Putra Malaysia recounted the different unfamiliar topics that she still enjoyed learning during the training sessions. The closing program also recognized Ms. Karen S. Bautista, studying PhD in Agronomy in UPLB, as the winner for the creative refresher quiz held during the recap part of each session.
Asst. Prof. Francisco, in her message to the scholars, shared the 3Gs that can help during the last stages of their graduate studies. She encouraged the scholars to be grateful, go with their gut feeling and embrace the process, and lastly, she wished them good luck for their studies and requirements. Mr. Miguel Victor T. Durian, University Extension Associate II and Affiliate Assistant Professor at UPLB-CDC, also mentioned that this training is his first engagement with SEARCA and he is delighted to be part of the program as a coordinator.
Other resource persons who shared their expertise during the training-workshop and coaching sessions include Asst. Prof. Rocky T. Marcelino, Asst. Prof. Jared Jorim O. Mendoza, Asst. Prof. Ramoncito G. Cambel, Asst. Prof. Ronald R. Roldan Jr., Asst. Prof. Mark Jay P. Dating, and Assoc. Prof. Dr. Liza N. Comia from the Institute of Statistics, College of Arts and Sciences, UPLB. They were also joined by Prof. Dr. Fernando dlC. Paragas from the College of Mass Communication in UP Diliman, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Pamela A. Custodio and Asst. Prof. John Mervin L. Embate from CDC-UPLB, Dr. Jaime A. Manalo IV, Supervising Science Research Specialist at the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice), and Dr. Nina Castillo, Biochemistry Scientist at Bayer Crop Science, California, USA.
Dr. Maria Cristeta N. Cuaresma, Senior Program Head of ECLD, highlighted that the customized training programs offered exclusively to scholars are embedded in the scholarship package offered by SEARCA. The Center’s goal is not only to grant scholarships but also to build the capacity of Southeast Asians to promote agricultural and rural development in the region. The training programs, while targeted to build the scholars' capacity for research and facilitate the completion of their graduation requirements, are also beneficial when they go back to their home institutions.
As the participants are nearing the end of their studies, Dr. Cuaresma encouraged them to stay active even after graduation as part of the alumni. As SEARCA Ambassadors of Goodwill, the Center hopes that the scholars will continue Accelerating Transformation through Agricultural Innovation in their institution, country, and region.