MPTC breaks silence over fraudulent training certificates

Mariners Polytechnic Training Center (MPTC) President Merle J. San Pedro in a huddle with officers of Mariners System and representatives from the Commission on Higher Education and MARINA. In the picture (left to right) - MPCF Cam Sur VPAA Marian Lazaro (side view), Ms. San Pedro, MPCF President and VACC Founding Chairman Dante La. Jimenez and CHED-Marina representatives.
Metro Manila – The Mariners Polytechnic Training Center (MPTC), a member-institution of the Mariners System expressed deep concern over the proliferation of fake training certificates these past months especially after the new requirements under the amended Standards of Training , Certification and Watchkeeping (STCW) paved the way for new courses to be taken by Seafarers to ascertain their continued competence to go on-board.

Ms. Merle J. Jimenez, President of MPTC said, “The equation is simple: with more training requirements, it means more business for the unscrupulous individuals who prey on the seafarers“.

This phenomenon has reached syndicated proportion that it has started to alarm the maritime industry.

With this development, MPTC has voiced-out the issue as its acquiescence could be misconstrued as tolerance to the decade-old problem of fake certificates, happening not only in the seafaring industry but in other agencies which ask for similar documents, as well. It can be recalled that even passports and licenses are now being attempted to be faked.

“In the past 30 years of existence of Mariners, this problem on fraudulent certificates has recently become noticeable especially now that the Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) has imposed a new requirement; the seafarers are asked to return to the training institutions which issued them the certificates so that they can be assessed prior to issuance of a new Certificate of Proficiency (COP).

Commodore Dante La. Jimenez (extreme left) with MARINA Head Maximo Mejia, Jr. (center in white shirt) and MPTC President Merle J. San Pedro (extreme right).

With the increasing number of fake certificates proliferating, what is even more disturbing is the claim that some employees of crewing agencies are the source of this illegal practice for a hefty fee. Sometimes, the cost is much more than the fees charged by legitimate training centers which invest on facilities and human resource in trainers and assessors who perform these highly specialized duties.

A large number of these fake training certificates are now in the hands of seafarers who unfortunately became ‘willing victims’ of the syndicates.

“We have sought the assistance of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to take cognizance of this issue in the seafaring industry and the filing of cases against 9 individuals for violation of Article 172 and 171 of the Revised Penal Code.

This law is aimed at curbing illegal practices that impact on the integrity of the trainings and certificates issued by legitimate institutions. This legal action is aimed at making concerned individuals who should be. Should this not be abated, it will continue to hurt not only the seafarers but it will also raise the question of the credibility and the quality of training of our Filipino seamen”, declared Ms San Pedro.

In order to strengthen the integrity of the training certificates issued by institutions, the MPTC has partnered with DOXCHECK , a centralized online security solution for documents and instituted to include more security features which can be verified ONLINE via the websites - or

Meanwhile, MPTC has called on colleagues in the industry to help put a stop to this practice by reporting similar fraudulent incidents to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) for appropriate action.

“We call on all seafarers to be vigilant not to fall into the trap set by syndicates and become victims. We also appeal to them not to allow to be used by these unscrupulous individuals who take advantage of the seafarers’ vulnerability. Finally, we appeal to MARINA and other government agencies involved in the issuance of certificates to embark on a massive information campaign to put an end to the scam”, Mariners Polytechnic Training Center President Merle J. Jimenez concluded. ###

Singapore Mission for placement tie-up of graduates yields positive result

The Mariners System delegation led by President Dante La. Jimenez of MPCF visited the Republic of Singapore and firmed-up tie-ups with Singaporean firms for job placements of the schools’ graduates. (Left picture) - Ms. Regina Eliza V. Jimenez of the Marketing Department of Global Manpower and Development, Inc., Mr. David Pik, Operations Manager of ICD Food Services and Commodore Jimenez. (Right picture) - Ms. Jimenez, Mr. Pik and Serve Q Manpower Services CEO William Quah.

Republic of Singapore – President Dante La. Jimenez of Mariners Polytechnic Colleges Foundation (MPCF) Camarines Sur and Legazpi City, Albay completed a mission to this city-state to secure job placements for the graduates of the school who finished not only maritime courses but also holders of land-based degrees such as HRM and Hospitality-related careers.

The three-day mission made from March 6 to 8, 2014 targeted establishments which manifested their intention to hire graduates from the Mariners schools to fill-up vacancies in various hotels, restaurants and shipping companies.

Among the enterprises which played hosts to the representatives of Mariners were MDIS Hostel, Serve Q Manpower Services, ICD Food Services, NTUC Food Fare Cooprative, Ltd., ASP Ship Management Group and the Ken-Pal (S) Pte. Ltd.

The first day of the mission was spent with officials of MDIS Hostel in which Mr. William Quah of Serve Q Manpower Services has forged a tie-up to undertake the procurement of Filipino workers needed for this establishment. It can be recalled that Mr. Quah visited MPCF-Legazpi in Albay in the month of February, 2014.

A meeting was made on the same day with Operations Manager David Pik of ICD Food Services who informed the Mariners System delegation that the manpower needs of the government-run NTUC Food Fare Cooperative are currently being processed and developments will be announced soon, in coordination with the Ministry of Manpower, Singapore.

The MPCF President meets with officers of the Singapore-based ASP Ship Management Group. (Left to right) General Manager Captain Robert Walker, Commodore Dante La. Jimenez, Ms. Regina Eliza V. Jimenez, Group Operations Manager Vitayli Chayka and Manager of Marine Operations and Safety Denzil D’Souza.

The second day was an appointment with the ASP Ship Management Group in which the Mariners schools used to have a tie-up with this firm. Aside from the revival of the previous joint cooperative activities, President Jimenez also embarked on inviting one of its executives to be the Commencement Speaker at the graduation rites come March 4, 2014 at MPCF-Camarines Sur.

On the third day, the delegation made a courtesy call to Her Excellency Minda Calaguian-Cruz, the Philippine Ambassador to Singapore and to Minister and Consul-General Alan L. Deniega at the Philippine Embassy.

On the same day, a meeting was made with Mr. Paul Lim, a construction company owner in which the idea of partnering with the Mariners System on the establishment of a Training Center which will be approved by the Singapore BCA. An A-1 contractor like Mr. Lim can qualify in setting-up a Foreign Training Center which can be built in one of the Mariners school’s campuses.

The meeting held at MDIS Hostel. (Left to right) Ms. Florence Quah, Ms. Jimenez, Ms. Sherri Lee, the hostel Directress and Mr. William Quah.

Meanwhile, the delegation expressed satisfaction on the success of the Singapore Mission.

“The three-day trip to the Republic of Singapore has been a productive endeavor. It has been done to continue the Mariners System’s cherished tradition of facilitating the employment of graduates be they in the land-based or sea-based courses. The institution envisions those who finished their courses get decent and high-earning jobs domestically or in foreign lands”, declared MPCF President Dante La. Jimenez. ###

PRC releases more names of board passers from Mariners

Legazpi City, Albay – The Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) released more names of graduates from Mariners Polytechnic Colleges Foundation (MPCF), this city who passed the recently concluded board examination for Second Marine Engineers and O.I.C. (Engineering Watch) levels for those who finished the degree of Bachelor of Science in Marine Engineering (BSMarE). Aside from 2nd Engineer Lord Morano Llona of Anislag, Daraga, Albay who topped the Second Marine Engineering Board Examination given on February 26 and 27, 2014, the following alumni also hurdled this test:

  • 2/E ABELLEDA, Carnold Lagunes of Bankilingan, Tabaco City, Albay
  • 2/E ASIS, Amando Ayende of Bigaa, Legazpi City
  • 2/E MAGALLENO, Abnel Noromor of Burabod, Libon, Albay.

Meanwhile, PRC also conveyed the list of the following Marine Engine Officer-graduates who passed the O.I.C. (Engineering Watch) examination given in the month of February 2014:
  • BRAGAIS, Laurence Bolanga of Pawa, Tabaco City, Albay
  • CESTINA, Rafael Loseño of Tuliw, Malinao, Albay
  • PESINO, Joffer Embido of Tuburan, Ligao City, Albay
  • LUBIANO, Gerald, Jay, Maristela of Putiao, Pilar, Sorsogon

This list was confirmed by MPCF-Legazpi Registrar Norma Villanueva who said “we are delighted by these results especially that the number one slot in the 2nd Marine Engineering Examination has been captured by an alumnus of the school.

With these developments, the school’s administration, faculty, staff and students rejoice in another landmark for the institution created by the board topnotcher and board passers.

“I congratulate those who passed the recent board examination given by the Professional Regulation Commision. Indeed, they serve as inspiration to the thousands of aspiring cadets who wish that someday, they will also reach the pedestal where they are now. This development gives the faculty, staff and administration the signal to continue working for excellence in the quality of education and training provided to the enrollees of the institution”, MPCF President Dante La. Jimenez declared.

With the Mariners System in Bicol having just celebrated its 40th Foundation Anniversary this March 2014, these achievements attained by the school alumni make a fitting tribute to the Founder – Commodore Jaime C. Jimenez, Sr. who dreamed of graduates able to reach the stars after they finish their courses. ###

MPCF – Legazpi athletes shine in 2014 PRISAA Regional Meet in Camarines Norte

Daet, Camarines Norte – Players from Mariners Polytechnic Colleges Foundation (MPCF), this city ruled in five sports events by garnering the championship in Football, Badminton, Taekwondo, Boxing and Swimming in the recently concluded Private Schools Athletic Association (PRISAA) Regional meet held in Daet, Camarines on February 20 to 23, 2014.

This was confirmed by Sports Coordinator Agnes D. Nacion, head of MPCF-PRISAA Regional Meet delegation with majority of the players sent to the event by the Albay province coming from the Mariners school.

“The Albay-Legazpi Team offered a good fight in almost all the games when fielded with players coming from other provinces of Bicol; it is with great pride that most of the athletes in the contingent come from our institution and they have contributed much in the overwhelming success of the group”, declared sports coordinator Ms. Nacion.

Below is the list of events participated in by players from MPCF-Legazpi and the rank attained by each team:

  • Football - Champion
  • Badminton (men) - Champion
  • Taekwondo - Champion
  • Boxing - Champion
  • Swimming - First Place

With this result, the players from Mariners are qualified to represent and be among the Region 5 delegation to the National PRISAA Collegiate Games to be held in Tagum City in Davao on April 5 to 12, 2014.

“This could have not been achieved had it not been for the abounding support by the school administration, Delegation Head Nacion added.

Meanwhile, Business Education Dean and Student Affairs Services (SAS) Chief Cynthia Duka expressed satisfaction on the achievement made by the players.

“I am confident that our players will continue to sustain the excellent performance started at the regional meet and duplicate it in the forthcoming National PRISAA Meet in Davao”, said SAS Head Dean Duka.

MPCF President Dante La. Jimenez has sent congratulatory message to the players and sports officials who in one way or another have contributed to the exceptional performance of the athletes. ###

Alumnus of Mariners gets highest slot in recent PRC board exam for 2nd marine engineers

2/E Lord Llona, from his old ID picture way back 2001
Legazpi City, Albay – Mariners Polytechnic Colleges Foundation (MPCF), this city takes pride in producing a topnotch alumni in the February 2014 Marine Engineering Examination given by the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC).

2nd Marine Engineer LORD MORANO LLONA, a graduate of Bachelor of Science in Marine Engineering (BSME) course from MPCF-Legazpi is number one in said government examination. This was confirmed by School Registrar Norma Villanueva after PRC released the result that he garnered a grade of 87.75%, making him the over-all topnotcher from among last month’s examinees.

Engr. Llona finished his course in 2004 and is a native of the municipality of Daraga, Albay. He was a consistent performer in his academic standing until he graduated and had been an outstanding maritime engineer in the several companies he joined in the past years after graduation.

With this development, the Mariners System community rejoices in the feat reached by one of its graduates.

“The administration and students congratulate Engr. Llona as we are happy upon learning that we have produced another number one in the recently released result of the board examination given by PRC to Marine Engineering graduates. What is important here is not only the honor but the inspiration it brings to the thousands of our maritime students who are aspiring to become seafarers, someday. This brings the message that to be an achiever is not impossible if one desires and works for it”, proudly declared MPCF-Legazpi President Commodore Dante Jimenez.

As of today, the school maintains an atmosphere for students to become achievers in the profession they have chosen. The highest level of the quality of education and trainings given to students are in its topmost priority.

“Mariners moves on to update and uphold its capability as a center for maritime education in the Bicol Region. It has beefed-up the qualification of its instructors as well as the laboratories and other equipment used in maritime studies to make them at par with the global requirements for seafarers as set by the International Maritime Organization (IMO)” said Executive Assistant and HR Head Lydia Cervantes.

Meanwhile, the administration has not ceased in its endeavor to keep the school conforming with global standards.

“It is not surprising that our graduates are able to land prominently in board examinations as well as their being hired in the big shipping enterprises anywhere in the world; Mariners is ISO certified and with the institution having passed the recent inspection conducted by the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) in the third quarter of 2013. This makes our alumni competitive, making them efficient and effective in their chosen field as professional seafarers”, Commodore Dante Jimenez concluded. ###

Philippine Swimming League stages 1st Commodore Jaime C. Jimenez, Sr.
Swim Meet in Legazpi, Albay

Mariners System’s swimming star Midshipman Jifrey Azor (left) showing his winning form as he practiced to grab gold before the 5th Invitational Swimming Championship held at the Royal Bangkok Sports Club in Bangkok, Thailand which made his school and country proud.

Metro Manila - The Philippine Swimming League (PSL), the national sports association for swimming of the Federation of the School Sports Association of the Philippines (FESSAP) will hold its 55th Leg Series dubbed as the 1st Commodore Jaime C. Jimenez, Sr. Swim Meet in Legazpi City, Albay on March 22, 2014.

FESSAP is the recognized body of the International Sports Federation (FISU) which works closely with PSL, the only organization that has the longest organized swimming grassroots developmental program in the country today.

This was announced recently by PSL President Susan Papa who said “The competition will serve as try-out for the 28th Summer Universiade to be held in Gwangiu, South Korea next year as well as for future international competitions in Australia, Hong Kong and Singapore.

The venue for the swimming competition will be at the newly-constructed Training Swimming Pool of Mariners Polytechnic Colleges Foundation (MPCF) annex campus at the beachfront of Albay Gulf in Bgy. Rawis, Legazpi City.

The venue for the 1st Commodore Jaime C. Jimenez, Sr. Swim Meet - the newly constructed MPCF Legazpi Training Swimming Pool

“We are happy to host the PSL Leg Series here at Mariners - Legazpi and that we are ready to showcase our school and the newly-built Training Swimming Pool used by our maritime cadets”, declared MPCF President Dante Jimenez.

The school hosts the one-day event which features swimmers from 6-under, 7-8, 9-10, 11-12, 13-14, 15-17 and 18 over.

“The main objective of this try-out is Excellence in Body and Mind and is open to all and no membership fee is required. PSL plans to send 96 swimmers to the 2015 Universiade”, PSL President Susan Papa added.

It can be recalled that the Mariners school in Bicol has already produced a swimmer of international caliber – Midshipman Jifrey Azor. He has won bronze, silver and gold medals in past domestic and international swimming competitions notably the swimfests in Bangkok, Thailand in December 2013 and Cape Town, South Africa in February of this year.

MPCF’s Midshipman Jifrey Azor (2nd from right) together with other Filipino swimmers during a warm-up at the 2014 Western Province Aquatics (WPA) Swimming Competition at the University of the Western Cape (UWC) Aquatics Center in Cape Town, South Africa in February, this year.

“Being a maritime school, we value excellence in swimming as a skill not only by those who engage in this sport but of every student who will soon embark on sea vessels when they graduate and become professional seafarers, soon”, Commodore Jimenez further disclosed. ###

5th and final batch of Mariners’ Mission Tabang to Tacloban rolls March 7

The team of MPCF school officials and PCGA Officers from MPCF-Legazpi which led the 5th and final mission of Mariners, Mission Tabang to Tacloban City as they gather for the last meeting, a day before their departure to the mission area. (Left to right) Gereon Gregorio, Erasto Alerta, Adel Bausa, Aproniano San Juan, Jr., Ronnie Gardon and Team Leader PCGA Captain Steven James Diño.

Legazpi City, Albay – The final and fifth group of Mission Tabang contingent by the Mariners System left for Tacloban City on March 7, 2014. They will be off for a four-day tour of duty.

The mission is composed of the combined groups of volunteers from the Mariners Polytechnic Colleges Foundation (MPCF) from Legazpi City, Albay and Canaman, Camarines Sur.

In an interview with Mission Head Captain Steven James Diño, Commandant of the 901st Coast Guard Auxiliary-Officer Training Corps (CGA-OTC) at MPCF-Legazpi, he confirmed that from this school alone, no less that 60 students and staff went with the group. Likewise, volunteers from the local Red Cross Youth were among those who joined.

Meanwhile, a similar number of cadets and school officials came from MPCF-Camarines Sur joined the Legazpi team as they converged at Port of Matnog in Sorsogon. The Canaman group was headed by PCGA Captain Felix Bautista, Commandant of the CGA-OTC Unit from this school.

This Mission Tabang delegation centered their relief and cleaning/clearing operation at the National Maritime Polytechnic (NMP) where it concentrated its effort in the school and in the neighborhood.

Included in the activities were the cutting of trees still scattered at the campus, the repair of electronic gadgets which can still be used including repair of machines used by students in the maritime laboratories which are still serviceable.

Scenes of destruction of properties and in agriculture such as these, taken from neighboring municipalities of Tacloban City immediately after the typhoon are still fresh in our minds. After four months, the victims now slowly return to their normal grind of life although still, much has to be desired.

This gesture of Mariners volunteers is helping NMP to return to normal. It has been noted that most of the students of this school were greatly and adversely affected by supertyphoon Yolanda and the storm surge it brought to the area.

It can be recalled that the first batch of Mission Tabang of relief operation and medical mission was focused in the coastal municipalities of Eastern Samar on the 4th week of November 2013 or three weeks after the typhoon. Commodore Dante Jimenez of Mariners System led the group as Mission Director. The initial operation served the victims in the municipalities of Balangkayan, Giporlos, Quinapondan, Balangiga, Lawaan and the City of Borongan.

In times of calamities, whether natural or man-made, the children are among the worst affected. These are scenes from BALANGKAYAN Town in Eastern Samar taken during an earlier Mariners Tabang Mission trip. It has been reported that 90% of residential houses in this municipality were totally destroyed.

The Mariners System is delighted to receive a message of appreciation sent by the leadership of National Maritime Polytechnic and from other sectors touched by the effort done by the schools and its volunteers.

ELSEVIER Foundation and MPCF unveil billboard of Library for Safe Seafaring at Mariners’ Ruby Anniversary

A perspective of the college library being upgraded at the MPCF Camarines Sur campus in preparation for the modernization of facilities and updating of books for safe seafaring thru a grant from the Amsterdam-based ELSEVIER Foundation

Canaman, Camarines Sur – A soft launching of the project ‘Library for Safe Seafaring (L4SS) was made during the 40th Foundation Anniversary of the Mariners System on March 4, 2014 at the Mariners Polytechnic Colleges Foundation (MPCF) campus, this province. It can be recalled that MPCF-Camarines Sur was awarded this grant by the Elsevier Foundation thru the linkages established by Board of Trustees Chairperson Evita L. Jimenez with the end-view of establishing a globally-linked modern library which will help enhance quality maritime education and training and more especially in the field of maritime safety.

The Foundation is a corporate charity funded by Elsevier - a global provider of scientific, technical and medical information products and services; this includes the giving of grants to knowledge centered institutions around the world like MPCF, being a center for maritime education in Southern Luzon and in Southeast Asia. This grant will focus on developing world libraries which will be equipped with the latest technologies.

The grant has become relevant more so that maritime disasters are a continuing cause of global worry despite safety-conscious systems set up by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and the STCW ‘78 Convention.

One of the leading maritime institutions in the Philippines is the Mariners Polytechnic Colleges Foundation (MPCF) located in one of the country’s poorest coastal regions, Bicol. It is one of the country’s top performing maritime schools, hence the grant has been channeled thru this institution.

(Left) The official logo of L4SS. (Right picture) - The unveiling of the billboard during the soft-launching of the Library for Safe Seafaring at the MPCF-Camarines Sur campus attended by school officials during the Ruby Anniversary of Mariners System.

The occasion was attended by Commodore Dante La. Jimenez and Dr. Marilissa J. Ampuan, the Presidents of MPCF-Camarines Sur and MPC-Naga, respectively, together with school officials on the occasion of Mariners System’s 40th Foundation Anniversary .

Through the MPCF, the Library For Safe Seafaring (L4SS) as a modern learning with advocacy facility, a reliable source of knowledge on the latest maritime trends, relevant references, teaching tools and learning materials that are accessible to its main users; and technologically equipped, globally connected and manned by a staff trained to use modern technology for library development to promote quality maritime education and training with emphasis on safe seafaring.

A timetable has been set for start of renovation of the existing library for its transformation into the highly specialized state-of-the-art modern Library for Safe Seafaring expected to make more relevant the maritime education offered by the Institution to aspiring Bicolano seafarers. ###

Significant, colorful activities mark Mariners Sytems’ Ruby Anniversary

Chairperson Emeritus Eliza Lazaro Jimenez cuts the ceremonial ribbon at the blessing and inauguration of the newly renovated and refurbished Student Center and Training Swimming Pool at MPCF-Camarines Sur. Flanking the matriarch of Mariners System are Dr. Marilissa J. Ampuan (left) – President of MPC-Naga and Commodore Dante La. Jimenez (right, in PCGA uniform) - President of MPCF Camarines Sur and Legazpi City, Albay. At the back are relatives and officers of the Institution.

Canaman, Camarines Sur – The 40th Foundation Anniversary of the Mariners System was marked with significant and lively events befitting an institution able to survive the rigors of time and sustain with flying colors its uninterrupted service to the Bicolano community.

The anniversary theme ‘Mariners for Bicolanos: 40 Years and Beyond’ speaks of the institution’s track record on how it started, what it is now and the mission it intends to continue to do in the years to come.

Among the momentous and vibrant activities include the medical mission for barangay folks in the neighborhood of the school, the launching of the year-round program of Women in Maritime (WIMA), the ‘Educate the Educators’ electricity forum for the schools and electricity consumers, the launching of the local education sector’s advocacy - ‘United Stand Against Corruption’, Jobs Fair, Food Fair, Invitational Basketball Game, Swimming Exhibition by bemedalled MPCF International Swimmer Midshipman Jifrey Azor and the Employees’ Night highlighted by the giving of awards and cash gifts to the longest serving personnel in the institution who are still employed up to now.

The children and mothers from neighboring barangays who were served during the medical mission conducted on Anniversary Day.

The wreath-laying ceremony infront of the monument of the late Founder Commodore Jaime C. Jimenez, Sr. was done immediately after the Arrival Honors for the two Presidents of MPC/F Naga and Camarines Sur. Madame Eliza was joined in the floral offering by the Jimenez clan and the officers, faculty members and staff of the institutions.

(Left picture) - The blessing and inauguration of the newly opened MTI office with MPCF Cam Sur EVP Merle J. San Pedro cutting the ceremonial ribbon and assisted by MPCF President Dante Jimenez. (Right picture) - The Women in Maritime (WIMA) during the Round-Table discussion which was done simultaneously with other activities during the 40th Foundation Anniversary.

The unveiling of the billboard with the details of the about-to-be-constructed Modern Library for Seafarers by ELSEVIER Foundation

There was also the arrival honors for the two Presidents of Mariners Naga and MPCF-Camarines Sur given by the Coast Guard Auxiliary – Officer Training Corps (CGA-OTC) cadets which was followed by the wreath-laying ceremony at the monument of the late Founder Commodore Jaime C. Jimenez.

The new site of the Shipboard Training Office (STO) and the office of the Maritime Training Institute (MTI) were blessed and inaugurated while the billboard showing the details of the proposed modern library funded by a grant from the Amsterdam-based ELSEVIER Foundation was unveiled.

MPCF’s international swimmer Midshipman Jifrey Azor (front) and teammate Cadet Romeo Galvez, Jr. (back, with an arm raised) show their swimming prowess during an exhibition at the Camarines Sur campus’ Training Swimming Pool at the Anniversary celebration.

The Ruby Anniversary springs inspiration to the men and women behind Mariners System today as it brings HOPE to Bicolanos. With the presence of this Institution in the region, it continues to contribute to changing the economic landscape in families whose children have become Professional Seafarers, Chefs, Restaurant Owners, Businessmen and Tourism & Hospitality Industry experts, not only in the Philippines but in other parts of the world. ###

Cam Sur’s education sector conducts electricity forum on Mariners’ 40th anniversary

The Forum Speakers (left to right) U.P. Professor Romulo ‘Bobby’ Tuazon (on the podium), Pete Ilagan of NASECORE, Commodore Dante La. Jimenez, Msgr. Zosimo Sañado and Atty. Ismael Albao from the local electricity consumers group.

Canaman, Camarines Sur – The education sector together with the electricity consumers group in Naga City and Camarines Sur carried out the ‘Educate the Educators’ Forum on March 4, 2014 at the JCJ Sports Complex at the Mariners Polytechnic Colleges Foundation, this province.

The occasion had for its theme ‘The increase of Electricity Rate by CASURECO and Its Impact to Colleges and Universities’ and it coincided with the 40th Foundation Anniversary of the Mariners System.

In attendance at the gathering were representatives from local universities and colleges such as the University of Nueva Caceres (UNC), Universidad de Sta. Isabel (USI), Naga College Foundation (NCF), Bicol State College of Applied Science and Technology (BISCAST), University of Saint Anthony (USANT) of Iriga City, Camarines Sur National High School (CSNHS), Mariners Polytechnic Colleges (MPC) – Naga and the Mariners Polytechnic Colleges Foundation (MPCF) in Canaman, Camarines Sur which played host to the event.

The resource persons took-up subject matters which enlightened school administrators & personnel, students and electricity consumers on the present condition of the local electric cooperative, how it was administered, the existing laws which protect paying consumers, the rights which consumers have to exercise and what could be done, in a concerted effort which will redound to the advantage of electricity clients not only for today but in the days ahead.

Among the speakers who graced the occasion were PETE ILAGAN - President of National Association of Electricity Consumers for Reforms (NASECORE) who focused on the rights of Consumers and understanding the monthly bill, PROF. ROMULO “BOBBY” TUAZON - UP Professor and Director for Policy Studies of the Center for People Empowerment in Governance (CenPEG) who discussed on the effects on education of high electric rates and ATTY. ISMAEL ALBAO of the electricity consumers group who delved on the present condition of the electric cooperative in Camarines Sur and the Magna Carta for electricity consumers.

Part of the crowd present at the Forum consisting of school administrators & accountants, members of the faculty, school staff, student leaders, professionals and electricity consumers & stakeholders.

MPCF President Dante La. Jimenez as Forum Convenor (extreme right) in a huddle with the awardees and participants before the start of the event – (left to right) Professor Renne Gumba, Mariners System’s Elmer Abad, former Casureco II President - Msgr. Zosimo Sañado, Atty. Manuel Teoxon and University of Nueva Caceres Vice President for Administration Dr. Eduardo H. Sison.

Included in the program was the giving of Plaque of Appreciation to local electricity consumers who stood their ground in clamoring for what is right and proper insofar as the operation of the local power firm is concerned.

Meanwhile, the signing of the statement of unity by the schools was also made during the event to firm up the education institutions’ United Stand Against Corruption. ###

The Mariners System at age 40 today and beyond

The latest infra-structure build-up in the three campuses of the Mariners schools in Bicol as Mariners System celebrates its 40th Foundation Annivesary. (Left picture) A wing of the main building at MPCF-Camarines Sur with the additional 4th Floor for the left and right wings having been completed. (Center picture) The façade of the five-storey MPC-Naga’s state-of-the-art laboratory Mariners Training and Hotel Institue (MTHI). (Right picture) The newly completed Training Swimming Pool at the school annex campus of MPCF-Legazpi, note the newly acquired orange-colored fully enclosed lifeboat attached to the Landship used in the training of maritime cadets.

It has been a long but colorful journey for the Mariners System since its inception in 1974 by its Founder - Commodore Jaime C. Jimenez. What it is now did not come in a flick of a finger; it consists of a story worthy to be reminisced. What Mariners is today is a product of the labor of love through the years of the men and women behind the Institution.

It started out as a maritime school with makeshift classrooms but with a Founder full of vision despite the local community’s expression of apprehension on the future of a school for seafarers situated in a place far from the sea. Looking back at what transpired and seeing what the Institution is now, indeed we say it has gone a long, long way and the rest is history.

As of today, Mariners System has established three campuses in the Bicol Region – one in Naga City, another in Canaman, Camarines Sur and in Rawis, Legazpi City. With the start of the second semester of Academic Year 2013-2014, the educational establishments now serve more than seven thousand students for its sea and land-based course offerings combined, with enrollment noted to have been climbing as it increases every semester.

It has its allied member-establishments complementing the schools, namely - the Mariners Training Center in Manila and Cavite, Unlad Ship Manning & Management Corporation and Globalmanpower & Development , Inc. based in Metro Manila.

The past forty years have brought marvelous transformation to Mariners System as it continues to be of service to Bicolanos and other adventurous would-be seafarers coming from the neighboring regions.

With the banner course offerings in the fields of Maritime Studies, Business, Hotel and Tourism-Related education, the Institutions have made a mark and secured prominence in rank in the local academic community especially in the fields of producing quality seafarers, business professionals and workers in the hospitality industry.

It has delivered an impact to the local economy, seeing graduates becoming maritime officers in various inter-island and international shipping companies. Notable among the impacts is the improved standard of living of families once a member is able to work abroad. As a result, we now see concrete houses being built, new micro and small businesses started, siblings being sent to schools where before, these were never imagined by an alumnus to be happening in his very-own family.

Thus, the slogan SARONG MARINERO SA CADA PAMILYANG BICOLANO or ‘One Seafarer in Every Bicolano Family’ has been adopted and has become more meaningful to struggling broods as it speaks of HOPE and a dream which is attainable for anyone via the Mariners brand of education.

This phenomenon is true not only to graduates of maritime courses but to those who finished Hospitality and Tourism-related courses. The academic program has been uniquely crafted to enable them to have a chance to work not only in domestic firms but abroad which gives them the choice to earn better compensation. The schools see to it that links are created and maintained with establishments here and abroad so graduates can be guided where to work after graduation.

More infra-structures at the Mariners System’s institutions cropped up in 2013. (Left picture) The new additional 3rd Floor of the Engr. Jaime Jimenez Engineering Building at the annex campus of MPCF-Legazpi. (Center picture) Inside the restaurant of the MTHI laboratory hotel of MPC-Naga. (Right picture) The newly renovated Training Swimming Pool at MPCF-Camarines Sur.

Meantime, a massive infra-structure build-up, procurement of state-of-the-art equipment especially for the maritime and tourism-related studies, the coming up with improved curriculum and the hiring of qualified instructors conforming to the requirements asked by the Commission on Higher Education (CHEd) and the global standards set by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) - among others, have become common sights in the Institution.

Foremost among the new edifices are the freshly-constructed solid structures in 2013 which include the Mariners Training and Hotel Institute (MTHI) - a five-storey state-of-the-art training hotel of Mariners Polytechnic Colleges (MPC) in Naga City and the newly- built Training Swimming Pool at Mariners Polytechnic Colleges Foundation (MPCF) Legazpi - equipped with the latest model of an enclosed lifeboat used in the training of future seafarers.

At Mariners Polytechnic Colleges Foundation (MPCF) in Canaman, Camarines Sur, an additional floor on what used to be a three-storey ‘left and right wings’ of the main building has been completed and is being used now by the ever-increasing school population. In another milestone, the Training Swimming Pool at the Camarines Sur campus being renovated is nearing completion as it is transformed into a resort-type attraction, aside from its being a training facility for maritime cadets.

Mariners System also boasts of modern equipment in its maritime studies laboratories such as the latest models of ‘simulators’ installed at MPCF Camarines Sur and Legazpi. The Mariners Training and Hotel Institute of MPC-Naga has a modern laboratory kitchen and ambience of a hotel with international standard equipped with elevator and other amenities.

From the vision of simply being a prime mover of quality education and training for students through a working quality management system to produce a Total Mariner or a Professional who is technically and globally competent, Mariners System now envisions to be the Center of Development not only in maritime but also in business and tourism-related education in the region.

In achieving this, the System has adopted a strategic direction that promotes outcomes-based instruction, research, community service and resource generation under an enhanced Quality Management System as the solid framework.

True to its name, the Mariners System now implements uniform programs, policies and standards as far as applicable for its three campuses. These are designed to ensure that they will similarly reap successes and enjoy benefits resulting from their respective operation.

Another trademark that Mariners System has become widely known is in its Corporate Social Responsibility. Be it in Legazpi, Naga or Camarines Sur, the Institution is awake to the realities affecting the community. It pushes timely advocacies to give Bicolanos optimum benefits of the region’s resources thru the Bicol Autonomy Movement (BAM); the condemnation of heinous crimes and the fight against rampant corruption in identified government agencies as they are being addressed thru the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC). The opposition to the abuses committed by officials in the power sector is ventilated thru its involvement in the various advocacy moves of the electricity consumers groups.

The Mariners System doing its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) thru Mission Tabang’s relief and medical operation led by Mission Director Dante La. Jimenez. The group conducted the operation in Supertyphoon Yolanda’s devastated areas in Eastern Samar in November 2013.

These developments have shown Mariners System’s dynamic drive to push for societal development in the region.

Visualized in a dream and planted to bear fruit, the MARINERS' SYSTEM was founded by Commodore Jaime C. Jimenez, Sr. in 1974 as Mariners' Polytechnic Colleges. The school was his humble contribution in educating the Bicolano youth and opening to them within reach the opportunities in maritime profession and industry.

Awarded ISO 9001: 2008 certificate by the Societe Generale de Surveillance (SGS).

All courses offered are duly accredited by the Commission on Higher Education (CHEd), Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), and the Maritime Training Council (MTC).

Mariners’ pride, the bemedalled international swimmer Midshipman Jifrey Azor as he poses with MPCF President Dante La. Jimenez. He has seen action in International swimfests held in Bangkok Thailand in December 2013 and recently in Capetown, South Africa in February 2014.

The theme for the Ruby Foundation Anniversary ‘Mariners for Bicolanos: 40 Years and Beyond’ is a fitting tribute to Mariners System, the men and women behind the organization and to its Founder whose vision does not end with the celebration.

This Institution gazes onward to giving HOPE to Bicolano families and to the community it wants to continue serving in the years to come.

Chamber of Commerce holds business forum; congratulates Mariners’ 40th Foundation Anniversary

Mariners Polytechnic Colleges (MPC) Naga prides itself with the newly-constructed laboratory hotel used by students taking-up HRM, Business and Tourism-related courses which help in boosting local hotel and restaurant businesses as it enhances job opportunities abroad for the graduates. (Left) President Dr. Marilissa J. Ampuan with EVP Dr. Gabriel L. Jimenez at the lobby of Mariners Training and Hotel Institute (MTHI).

Naga City – The Metro Naga Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MNCCI) held a business forum at Villa Caceres Hotel this city on March 1, 2014 on the occasion of its first quarterly General Membership Meeting the Induction of New Officers and Members for the year 2014.

Attended by local business owners and executives, Mariners Polytechnic Colleges (MPC) Naga Executive Assistant Eliezer Alipante represented the school’s President Dr. Marilissa J. Ampuan in the event.

During the affair, MNCCI passed on good wishes for Mariners System on the occasion of its Ruby Anniversary. Naga City Mayor John Bongat, who was one of the speakers likewise aired his congratulatory message to the Institution which he included in his address.

The business organization now headed by its new President Nicolas Beda Priela, a former Bicol Governor for the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI), acknowledged the role which MPC/F play.

“Mariners continues to give distinctive opportunities to families in Bicol thru the maritime education it offers. With its presence in the region, many of our youth are given the chance to uplift the living condition of their respective families with quality maritime education now offered and taken-up here. Students do not have to go to Metro Manila and other far- away places to study. Allow me to extend my best wishes to Mariners for its contribution to local business; after 40 years, many of its graduates are noted to have become entrepreneurs after they retire as seafarers”, said MNCCI President Priela.

Aside from Vice President for Chamber Management Elmer Abad, other officers in the organization include VP for Special Projects Alfredo Perdon who is Managing Director of GNN TV 48, the Board of Directors which include Bicol Mail’s Editor-in-Chief Jose Perez, ABS-CBN’s Regional Manager Amy Garcia-Villafuerte, Naga College Foundation’s President Michelle V. Padua-Hornby and Jack Hernandez of the University of Nueva Caceres, among others.

With business courses being part of the curricula-offering of the school, the Mariners System preserves its ties with the Chamber, cognizant of the importance of the linkages which have to be maintained with other local business institutions.

During the business forum, a PCCI official who was guest speaker and Inducting Officer at the event informed the Chamber members on the latest trends in business especially in the South Luzon-Bicol areas.

“There are various opportunities at hand which students and graduates can look into, especially the Alumni who now have the resources which can be utilized as seed capital needed to start sustainable micro or small enterprises”, declared Ed Nicolas, PCCI’s Vice President for Southern Luzon. ###