The basic purpose of the establishment of the Southern Leyte State University is clearly stated in section 2 of R.A 9261 to wit;
Section 2. General Mandate. The University shall primarily provide advanced education, higher technological, professional instruction and training in trade, fishery, agriculture, forestry, science, education, commerce, engineering and related courses. It shall also undertake research and extension services and provide progressive leadership in its areas of specialization.
Section 3. Curricular Offerings. The University shall offer undergraduate, graduate and short-term technical courses/within its areas of specialization and according to its capabilities as the Board of Regents may deem necessary to carry out its objectives, particularly to meet the needs of Southern Leyte and the Region. The existing high school shall be transferred to the jurisdiction and supervision of the Department of Education: Provided, That the high school shall be allowed to remain and operate within the campus of the University until the existing students shall have completed their high school education: Provided, further, That the University may operate a reasonably-sized laboratory school if it has a College of Education.
The tri-fold functions of teaching (instruction), research and extension services, as envisioned by the Philippine Higher Education, is one of the major functions of the university. In addition, the highlighted word such as training refer to the responsibility of the institution of providing a venue where academic learning be put into actual productive practice while developing the person’s moral and spiritual potential (Philippine National Development Plan). The expanded areas of discipline to be provided by the University matches with the mission of the Philippine Higher Education in its task to offer programs and services that meet the demands of an industrializing economy thus producing professional manpower and entrepreneurs. This opportunity will complement the provincial and regional plans regarding manpower requirement and the establishment of small and medium enterprises for its sustainable growth and development. The phrase “progressive leadership in its areas of specialization” comprises two important components. The former refers to the necessity to attain “excellence” in all services that the university is mandated to deliver and the latter emphasizes the need to gain expertise in one distinct program specialization among the disciplines stipulated in section 2 of the charter. This provision is in concurrence with one of the goals of the Commission on Higher Education in promoting efficiency and effectiveness as one of the concrete standards for excellence.
The university charter with its mandated functions and limitations shall also exercise flexibility in the formulation of its development plan moving forward as stipulated in RA 9261, section 3, which states that the Board of Regents shall carry out the development objectives deemed necessary in meeting the demands of the province and the region . Higher education will play a crucial role in supporting the continued economic integration of ASEAN by 2015. As component of this ambitious plan, SUC’s play an important role in creating a systematic mechanism to support the integration of universities across Southeast Asia. The four main priorities of this plan are centered on Student mobility, Credit transfers, Quality assurance and Research clusters in order to harmonize the ASEAN higher education system, encompassing 6,500 higher education institutions and 12 million students in 10 nations.
In instruction, the foremost challenge is for the University is to produce graduates who are certified as ready and able to work not only in the Philippines but within the ten-member states of ASEAN. This means thorough reviews and innovation of the university curricula and processes are necessary for the production of competitive graduates taking into consideration the provisions of CHED’s Strategic Plan and CMO 46, series of 2012. The policy-standard to enhance quality assurance in Philippine Higher Education through an outcome-based and typology-based shall be adopted and be the guide moving forward. Generally, the university will be able to contribute in building a quality nation capable of transcending the social, political, economic, cultural and ethical issues that constrain the country’s human development, productivity and global competitiveness (CMO 46).
Higher education, as the core action line to promote integration through enhanced human resource development in the region, the university has to contribute in narrowing the development gaps in the region, prepare the youth for regional leadership and increase the competitiveness. The university has to recognize promotion of better student and professional training, as well as skilled workers mobility that aligns with the ASEAN skills recognition framework.
On Research and Development:
In research, the challenges is to surpass national into international recognition of research outputs. This means that research investments for the University must be dedicated to the production of ISI/Spocus-indexed research outputs.
CHED has a new paradigm for Extension. In this new paradigm, Extension is viewed not just as technology-transfer but as part of the entire knowledge-production machinery of the University. Research feeds to Extension; Extension feeds both Research and Instruction. The challenge for the University is how to implement this paradigm.
The challenges in Production remain the same which is to earn income from businesses related to the main university functions. The university’s assets and business strengths have to be accounted for before the university invests in small-scale entrepreneurship. It has to recognize and utilize its vast resources, human capital & financial capital & resources/commodities. The University must recognize the importance of a Business Plan and capable people to run and operate the business enterprise.
The land classification and zoning as a result of the formulation of the Land-Use Plan of the university is a timely development for the administration to harness and optimize the use of these resources for income generation.
On Governance and Management:
The Administration and support staff shall be able to direct Instruction, Research, Extension and Production for the delivery of their respective outcomes transparently, efficiently and effectively and be able to manage available resources within auditing rules and regulations. Academic and business linkages have to be established or accommodated that will generate a positive impact on the University’s operation. Also, it has to empower each official by ensuring that authority and resources will be given corresponding to the degree of accountability and responsibility. The administration shall respond to the demand for greater accountability and efficiency with regard to utilization of public funds, the finite human and institutional resources, and the increasing requirements of various stakeholders for quality education and training.