“Teaching minds, touching hearts and transforming lives” is no easy task, even for a university like DLSU. To begin with, the University needs impeccable faculty members.
In his inaugural speech on his installation and in preparation for the Centennial Celebration, DLSU President and Chancellor Br. Jun Erguiza FSC said, “What in effect, is my hope as president, is for our faculty to realize that they are involved in a ministry that obliges them to bring about the transformation of human capital.” The prestigious men and women that Lasallian graduates have become can be attributed to the mentorship and training their former professors made them experience.
In line with making DLSU a world-class research university, the University has established ways to ensure the quality of its teaching faculty. With this, DLSU has set specific guidelines and policies concerning the recruitment and training of its faculty.
According to the University’s Faculty Manual, the hiring procedure for full-time faculty consists of several steps. All applications, along with accompanying documents, are screened by the academic department chair, and based on consultations with the department’s faculty; the chair submits recommendations and other requirements to the college dean.
If the dean finds an applicant acceptable, the applicant is recommended to the Vice Chancellor for Academics (VCAD) for clearance. Eventually, the hiring board deliberates on the application and recommends a rank to the chancellor, with clearance from the VCAD.
Mitzie Conchada of the School of Economics (SOE) affirms, “Based on the Faculty Manual, we have guidelines for each rank. Let us say, for instance, for professorial levels, there are different qualifications. As one advances into the rank, more qualifications are required so there is a standard procedure based on the faculty manual.”
Another factor that the University considers is whether it needs quality of faculty members over their quantity.
In the case of the Manufacturing Engineering and Management (MEM) Department, which caters to less than 600 students enrolled in the program per school year, they can still afford to prioritize quality over quantity, says Department Chair Dr. Nilo Bugtai.
The department only targets three part-time faculty members, but do not set a quota for incoming full-time teaching staff.
Consequently, the department does not risk too much in hiring young and inexperienced faculty members, since the department does not need a big number of new teachers. Bugtai furthers, “We have few good MEM students who are finishing their doctorate degrees in 2012 and the others in 2014, and they signified to come back and teach in the department.”
Br. Jun shares that though young faculty members are inexperienced, they have the potential to develop. “It is better sometimes to get somebody with good potential. [These are faculty members] who could become really good researchers and teachers later on and [we can] gamble on [these people].”
According to Bugtai, “Having faculty members with doctorate degrees in their field of expertise means hiring staff with enhanced teaching methodologies and having the authority to conduct researches. They also teach the students with real experiences in their tangible research outputs that have contributed to new knowledge in the field.”
Dr. Brian Gozun, Dean of the Ramon V. del Rosario-College of Business (RVR-COB), shares that the teaching staff requirements vary depending on the college or department. He explains that colleges and departments are not necessarily limited by requirements mandated by the Faculty Manual.
The RVR-COB, for instance, is more flexible in looking for doctorate degree holders. Gozun explains that more than doctorate degrees, the industry experience needed for the faculty to effectively teach the courses COB offered is more crucial.
Certain colleges and departments are now trying to attract seasoned and skilled faculty outside the University. Br. Jun shares that the University invites seasoned professors to teach through networks established by DLSU faculty members with other universities.
While DLSU can continue developing its boast-worthy facilities and curricula, faculty members are still the greatest asset of the University. While good facilities can provide a great deal of training and development, they will be ineffective without quality members of the academe.