UA&P holds 1st National Mentoring Conference

UA&P holds 1st National Mentoring Conference

by Carlo Cabrera on October 11, 2012 - 11:38 am

Dr. Gabriel Dy-Liacco shares his insights on mentoring. Photo by Carlo Cabrera

UA&P is one of the few academic institutions, and perhaps the first, to incorporate a  one-on-one mentoring system as a means to progress the integral human development of  its students.

Recently the Mentoring and Guidance Desk of the Center for Student Affairs reached out to other schools that hope to adopt similar methods in their teaching through the first National Conference for Student Mentoring entitled “Shaping Young Minds and Hearts (Towards Integrative Coaching, Counseling, and Mentoring).”

“Mentoring is one of the things that differentiate us as a University,” Guidance Counselor James Lactao said. “Dr. Severina Villegas came up with the idea, which could also be considered one of our contributions to the #5tothe50th efforts. In a way, it’s also the University’s contribution to society.”


Held last September 13-14, the conference saw the attendance of more than a hundred school officials—administrators, guidance counselors, homeroom advisers, teachers, and parent leaders. They came from as far as Baguio, Laoag, Tuguegarao, Naga, Bohol, Iloilo, Leyte, Iligan, Lanao Del Sur, North Cotabato, Davao, and Marawi.

Lactao, who gave a talk on the facts and myths behind guidance counseling, was one of the conference speakers. School of Education and Human Development Vice Dean Dr. Gladys Golo discussed the essential characteristics of adolescence, while Dr. Paul Dumol, associate professor of the College of Arts and Sciences, talked about coaching beyond skills competencies.

Mentoring consultants Dr. Villegas and Dr. Gabriel Dy-Liacco also shared ideas on going beyond desired learning competencies, and the basic knowledge and skills in mentoring and coaching, respectively. A panel discussion was moderated by Concha de la Cruz of SED and Anthony Lumicao with panelists James Dinglasan, Martin Verdejo, Julia Pantaleon, and Becca Villamor.

‘Educators as mentors’

The conference received positive feedback from the participants. Alumnus Abram Eustaquio, who graduated in 2008 and is currently the Executive Director of Universidad de Zamboanga, said he attended the conference because of the good that mentoring did for him during his stay at UA&P and plans to institutionalize a similar system.

Marie Joy Castro, a teacher from Assumption, Antipolo, said that the conference “help(ed) us realize the significant role that educators play as mentors,” while Estella Marie Abiola, guidance facilitator of Montessori De Manila, commended the University’s efforts in “developing our youth’s character.”

Annual conference

Another conference that will be able to accommodate more participants, according to Lactao, is already in the pipeline for next year. The Mentoring and Guidance Desk is currently working on sending out action plans to each of the attendees, addressing how mentoring could play a role in their specific administrations.

“We know mentoring really helps,” Lactao said, pointing out that it is one of the benefits singled out by students upon exit interviews. “It has a positive impact in changing their outlook on academics.”

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