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by: Darenn Rodriguez
As the Philippine maritime industry expects to grow even more significantly in the next decade, Our Lady of Fatima University (OLFU) through its College of Maritime Education (CME) is beefing up its quality standards by opening up opportunities for its exchange students with Mokpo Maritime University; this, being one way of helping the Philippines blossom into a major maritime nation.
OLFU President Dr. Caroline Marian Enriquez met with Mr. Jae Sin Sim, Chairman of the Mokpo Maritime University (MMU) Alumni Association and Korean Maritime Association of the Philippines on 04 July 2017 to discuss a possible partnership with MMU.
“This is a big opportunity for our students to travel to Korea, and learn their culture, and be immersed in the Korean education system,” Dr. Enriquez said. Mr. Sim said he will propose to MMU officials about drafting a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with OLFU. Further, he touched on the possibility of OLFU Maritime students doing on-board training on Korean ships.
However, one of the hindrances to this alliance is the language barrier. Mr. Tae Jong Lee, the OLFU Korean Coordinator, said most of the schools in Korea require foreign students to at least have an intermediate level of proficiency for the Korean language. Fortunately, MMU’s Mr. Sim is open to providing resource materials to OLFU if an elective subject on the Korean language is to be offered by OLFU.
Currently, OLFU has an existing MOU with the Korean Maritime and Ocean University (KMOU) which allows four OLFU students to apply for the exchange student opportunity provided that they hold at least a 3rd level of proficiency on oral and written Korean language. KMOU will provide accommodations and food on-campus, free-of-charge.
Aside from Dr. Enriquez, the others present at the meeting were: College of Maritime Education representatives Capt. Ernesto Leal, C/E Antonio Ballester, C/M Cesario Regacho, and Engr. Jay dela Cruz; OLFU Korean Coordinator Mr. Tae Jong Lee, CPDAP Manager Dr. Rodehlia Macaspac, and CPDAP Technical Assistant Darenn Rodriguez.