(Photo by YiKai Luo)

Delegation from the Philippines visits Boston College

Nearly 20 lawmakers and higher education officials came to campus, part of the group's U.S. higher education learning exchange

Boston College recently hosted a delegation of nearly 20 lawmakers and higher education officials from the Philippines who visited the United States as part of a higher education learning exchange. The Filipino delegation received an overview on how the University and institutions in the Philippines are connecting and about future endeavors involving students and faculty.

The visitors included Senator Juan Edgardo Angara, Senator Sherwin Gatchalian, Ateneo de Manila University President Roberto C. Yap, S.J., and University of the Philippines President Angelo Jimenez.

“Boston College has an enduring relationship with higher education in the Philippines, especially the Ateneo de Manila and the Ateneo de Cagayan,” said Vice Provost for Global Engagement and Canisius Professor of Theology James F. Keenan, S.J. “It was a pleasure to welcome our great friend, Bobby Yap, S.J., and our other esteemed guests.”

During the delegation’s campus visit on April 17, a panel of BC faculty and administrators discussed initiatives and programs connected to universities in the Philippines.

Professor Glenn Gaudette, the John W. Kozarich ’71 Chair of the Department of Engineering, noted that he will bring 12 BC engineering students to the Philippines in July. The cohort will collaborate with a group from Ateneo de Manila University on a local engineering project and also work on water supply issues in neighboring regions.

Professor Brian K. Smith, Honorable David S. Nelson Chair at the Lynch School of Education and Human Development, discussed joint work between the schools of education at BC and Ateneo de Manila University.

“The Ateneo de Manila school of education and our Lynch School have extensive connections,” noted Fr. Keenan, who also directs BC’s Jesuit Institute. “We look forward to the same type of collaboration in engineering and to faculty exchanges between our schools of theology and ministry.”

Connell School of Nursing Dean Katherine Gregory talked about the partnership between BC’s nursing school and Xavier University-Ateneo de Cagayan College of Nursing, which signed a memorandum of understanding in 2022.

Other BC panelists included Vice Provost for Faculties Billy Soo, Vice President for Institutional Research and Planning Mara Hermano, and Larry Pickener, director of the Office of Global Education, who shared data on BC students studying in the Philippines as well as Filipino students studying at BC.

Fr. Keenan said he, Ateneo de Manila School of Law Professor Alu Dorotan, and BC Law Associate Clinical Professor Evageline Sarda are exploring relationships involving the law schools.

Dorotan is a member of the Climate Change & Migration working group of BC’s Program on Global Ethics and Social Trust. She was recently in Washington, D.C., to take part in meetings with President Joe Biden and Philippines President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr.

Fr. Keenan, along with Executive Director of Global Engagement Bryan Fleming, organized the BC visit, which concluded with a tour of the Chestnut Hill campus led by Hermano and Andrew Kolebuck ’25.