A Year of COVID-19: Looking back at how the pandemic affected MSU-IIT

by Michelle Jeanne Caracut, OC/OPI

Exactly one year ago today, MSU-IIT suspended work and classes after Chancellor Sukarno D. Tanggol issued a memo canceling all face-to-face activities in the campus as a precautionary measure against growing coronavirus concerns in Iligan City.

As classes and work halted; students and employees filed out of the gates; and parking lots emptied; the campus was left uncharacteristically quiet. And this remained the case for the rest of the year as classes were moved online and only a skeleton work crew was maintained by the University. 

While the pandemic kept most everyone away in 2020, many notable things still happened on campus.  Here are some of them:

Innovative Flexible Teaching and Learning Delivery

To ensure that learning continues during the pandemic, the University utilized its Online Learning Environment or MOLE as the primary learning platform. The University made use of MOLÉ 2.0 during the First Semester, AY 2020-2021. By second semester, the University’s Center for Information and Communication Technology (CICT), together with the MSU-IIT Center for eLearning (MICeL), upgraded the system into MOLÉ 3.0, which is also available as a mobile app.

To support research activities during online classes, teachers and students can also access the University’s e-library, curated and maintained by the Office of the Institute Library. 

What used to be done face-to-face, conferences, meetings, and lectures are done virtually through available online platforms like Google Meet and Zoom.

Automation of Processes in the University

The University utilized the MSU-IIT Intelligent Course Adviser (MICA) for online enrollment that was also designed and developed by the CICT. 

A graduation app was also employed so that graduating students can apply online.

A Document Tracking System (DTS), commissioned by the Office of the Chancellor, was developed by CICT and MICeL. Employees can now record, track, and monitor online letter requests, financial and other documents.

Rankings

MSU-IIT rejoined the ranks of Asia’s top universities in the latest ranking results released on November 25, 2020 by Quacquarelli Symonds, a British company specializing in the analysis of higher education institutions around the world.

In the 2021 edition of the QS World University Rankings: Asia, MSU-IIT landed in the top 83% of all universities evaluated and held an overall rank of 551 – 600.

The University also ranked 3rd out of 6 Philippine universities in the UI GreenMetric World Rankings 2020. 

Overall, MSU-IIT is 548th out of 912 universities coming from different parts of the world.

New Vision and Mission

The University announced the full adoption of its revised vision, mission, and core values through Special Order No. 01403-IIT, Series of 2020 issued on December 2, 2020.

MSU-IIT’s new Vision and Mission:

Vision: A university committed to the holistic development of the individual and society

Mission: To provide quality education for the development of Mindanao and the country through relevant programs in instruction, research and community engagement

Two new core values were added to the five existing ones: 

Transparency. Accessibility to information and openness across all levels

Participation: Involving everyone in decision-making and policy-making

University Buildings

Two things students can look forward to when they return to the campus are the new University Canteen, located at the old SET Building, and the new, five-storey CASS Academic Building. Both are set to be inaugurated soon. 

Photo credits: Jan Christian Pagarigan, OPI