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Foremost educator Dr. Caroline Enriquez awarded the Gusi Peace Prize
Foremost educator Dr. Caroline Enriquez awarded the Gusi Peace Prize

By: Vicente Santos


By: Vicente Santos


The visionary educator was recognized for her valuable contribution to education and peace in society

Dr. Caroline Marian S. Enriquez, President of Our Lady of Fatima University (OLFU), was hailed as one of the distinguished laureates of the Gusi Peace Prize International for 2019.

Dr. Enriquez was awarded with the Gusi Peace Prize because of her exemplary and visionary leadership in the academe as a prime mover towards a more innovative and globally recognized Philippine education system, and for her significant efforts towards the attainment of peace in society.

In the glittering awards rites held on 27 November 2019 at the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City, Dr. Enriquez humbly accepted the award together with 18 other laureates from all around the world, mostly politicians, diplomats, physicians and acknowledged global leaders. Aside from Dr. Enriquez, the other Filipino Gusi Peace Prize laureate is Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso, Mayor of the City of Manila.

Dr Enriquez Gusi Peace Prize (1)

The other 2019 Gusi Peace Prize Laureates are Justice Ignacio Mahiques (Argentina), Amb. Patrick De Beyter (Belgium), Dr. Bernhard Sabel (Germany), Dr. Trevor Gibbs (Great Britain), Dr. Mark Berelowitz (Great Britain), Prof. Jeffrey Levett (Greece), Amb. Mario Bucaro (Guatemala), Dr. Dinesh Sharma (India), Edward Khoo (Malaysia), Dr. John Cook (New Zealand), Farhan Wilayat Butt (Pakistan), Margarita Parshukova (Russia), former President Kgalema Motlanthe (South Africa), MCV Maphalala (Swaziland), Senator Teerakiat Jareonsettasin (Thailand), Dr. Burak Küntay (Turkey), and Dr. Gary Dunbar (USA).

In her acceptance speech, Dr. Enriquez pointed to OLFU as the pillar of her aspirations and vision for the young generation. “They (OLFU) have supported me in everything that I have been doing for the sake of educating the Filipino youth. For and in behalf of all the students, old and young alike, please consider education as a catalyst for improving your lives,” she said.

Dr Enriquez Gusi Peace Prize (3)

“My whole life has been dedicated to education, and I believe that this is one way of transforming lives, as well as contributing to nation-building,” added the esteemed educator.

Dr. Enriquez is no stranger when it comes to leading the pursuit of excellence in education and uplifting the lives of students and individuals in society. She is the current president of the Philippine Association of Colleges and Universities (PACU) and was also bestowed with an Education Leadership Award by the Asian Confederation of Businesses (ACB) and CMO Asia for “excellence in application of leadership principles to business situations.” The Friends for Cultural Concerns of the Philippines (FCCP) also lauded Dr. Enriquez as a Distinguished Leader of the Academe for her efforts in furthering Filipino culture and arts in the young.

She was also instrumental in the continuing expansion efforts of OLFU. Last August 2019, Dr. Enriquez led the way in affirming OLFU’s commitment to better and world-class education for Filipino students with the inauguration of the Research, Innovation, Science and Enterprise Tower, or simply the “RISE” Tower located in Marulas, Valenzuela City. The highly advanced, 8-storey building serves as an integrated academic space where theories are experienced and put into play. RISE Tower houses various simulation laboratories and collaborative areas with cutting-edge equipment and technologies.

Also part of OLFU’s expansion was the inauguration of its new Laguna campus, located at the Old National Highway (Manila South Road), Barangay Macabling, City of Santa Rosa. The first building has five stories with over 20 classrooms and laboratories. Initial course offerings include Bachelor of Science in Medical Laboratory Science, Pharmacy, Psychology, Computer Science and International Tourism Management.

Dr. Enriquez also spearheaded OLFU’s “50 Homes for Fatima’s 50 Glorious Years” project in partnership with Habitat for Humanity. OLFU helped fund the construction of 50 homes and make a difference in the lives of 50 families, in conjunction with the celebration of the school’s 50th founding anniversary in 2017 and its vision of “improving man as man.” The first 12 homes are located at Northville 2 in Bignay, Valenzuela City, while 33 homes have risen in Bistekville 5, Quezon City. Construction of the remaining five is currently underway.

The Gusi Peace Prize traces its roots through the valiant efforts of Capt. Gemeniano Javier Gusi, a World War II guerilla who fought against Japanese oppressors, and became a politician and staunch human rights advocate. The Gusi Peace Prize aims “to honor individuals and organizations who have given exemplary contributions to global peace and progress through world brotherhood, and by using their God-given talents for the benefit of mankind.” Its awarding ceremony is held every 4th Wednesday of November, declared as the Gusi Peace Prize International Friendship Day by virtue of Presidential Proclamation No. 1476, signed by then-President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

This year’s event was broadcasted globally through the Taiwan-owned International Constructive Programming Channel, Supreme Master Television. Ambassador Barry Gusi, a renowned internationalist, currently serves as the Chairman of the Gusi Peace Prize Foundation based in Manila, Philippines.

The Gusi Peace Prize is awarded to excellence in the following categories: Academe, Scientific Research and Discovery, Physiology or Medicine, Chemistry, Physics, Journalism, Statesmanship, Philanthropy or Humanitarianism, Economics, Cinematic Excellence, Performing Arts, Visual Arts, Engineering Technology, Religion, Politics, Poverty Alleviation, Literature, Cultural Heritage, Internationalism, Architecture, Archaeology, Ecosystem and Biodiversity and Biology.