Director Glenn Gregorio of the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA) was appointed by the Commission on Higher Education (CHEd) as chairman of its Technical Panel for Agriculture (TPA) to lead reforms in the agriculture curriculum. Gregorio said he welcomes the challenge to lead efforts in reforming the agriculture curriculum in the country’s higher education institutions (HEIs) to make it more relevant to the present and future job markets in the Philippines and abroad. “As agriculture remains a major engine of economic development in most Southeast Asian countries, HEIs are in a strategic position to pursue projects and initiatives related to food and nutrition security and their agility in designing their curricular and extension programs to produce professionals who can actively engage in achieving food and nutrition security goal,” he said. The CHEd said it has appointed new technical panel members in the fields of public administration and agriculture to carry out the mandate of the Commission to harness the equal representation of the academe, government and industry in curriculum reform and ensure that academic programs produce the needed manpower for local and international needs. In the TPA, the academe is represented by Dr. Candida Adalla and Dr. Domingo Angeles, former College of Agriculture deans of the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB), and Dr. Danilo Abayon, former President of Aklan State University. The industry is represented by Nikole Ma. Nimfa Alicer, farmer and founder of Kalipayan Farms, while Dr. Aimee Lyn Dupo, UPLB Graduate School Secretary and Professor at the UPLB Institute of Biological Sciences, was appointed as technical evaluator. CHEd explained that the technical evaluators are a group of experts and specialists whose main function is to monitor and evaluate compliance of HEIs with the policies, standards and guidelines set by the Commission. CHEd said the TPA members representing the government will soon be appointed. Members of the technical panel within a term of four years are expected to assist the Commission in providing technical expertise, particularly in the development of disciplinal and degree program roadmaps, CHEd said. It also said the technical panel members will review, revise and update policies, standards and guidelines based on the policy direction set by the commission and consistent with local, regional, and international needs and industry trends. “It will also develop or revise Policies and Guidelines on Centers of Excellence and Centers or Development for the various disciplines and in the crafting of monitoring and evaluation instruments and systems, as well as the orientation of technical evaluators,” CHEd said. Dr. J. Prospero de Vera 3rd, CHEd chairman, said the reconstitution of technical panels is anchored on the need to align higher education to standards, priorities and needs in international, regional and national settings. “The experts from academe, government and industry will assist the commission in policy formulation and implementation consistent with the principles of transparency, accountability and participation,” de Vera said.