Within the walls of the Philippines’ most popular heritage site of Intramuros lies the country’s seat of technological education
excellence. Don Tomas Mapúa, the first registered Filipino architect, founded Mapúa University (Mapúa) on January 25, 1925, with the
vision of it becoming an educational institution that would give the necessary emphasis on the growing importance of science and
technology in the improvement of the country’s economy and the quality of life of its citizens. This vision led to Mapúa’s pioneering
of technical course offerings in the country, beginning with the programs Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering (CE) and B.S.
Tradition of excellence
For almost nine decades of excellence in technical instruction, Mapúa has grown to be the Philippines’ biggest engineering school,
with at least 15 undergraduate and 18 graduate engineering programs. Its enrollees account for at least 16% of the total student
population in B.S. in Chemical (ChE), Civil (CE), Computer (CpE), Electrical (EE), Electronics (ECE), Environmental and Sanitary (EnSE),
Industrial (IE), and Mechanical Engineering (ME) programs of the top 10 engineering schools in the country, based on Commission on
Higher Education’s (CHED) 2010 enrollment data. Mapúa’s program offerings in other fields of study have also expanded particularly in
Architecture and Design, Information Technology (IT), Business and Management, Multimedia Arts and Sciences, Social Sciences,
and Health Science.
Mapúa’s efforts to continuously improve the quality of its education have been notable. For demonstrating high standards in classroom
instruction, research, and extension service, CHED declared the University as National Center of Development for CE, CpE,
CS (Computer Science), EE, ECE, IE, IT, and ME programs. Industry partnership has also been given more focus in the recent years by the
University. Currently, it has tie-ups with hundreds of local and international educational institutions, organizations, and companies
for its faculty development, collaborative researches, and student internships. Such efforts enabled Mapúa to consistently produce
topnotchers in licensure examinations. On record, the University’s board heroes have reached close to 300 since 2002.
Mapúa moves to fine-tune its teaching standards with a series of accreditations. For one, the Philippine Association of Colleges and
Universities Commission on Accreditation (PACUCOA) affirmed the University’s high standards in educational operations, granting Level
IV accreditation to its CE program and Level III accreditation to its CpE, EE, ECE, EnSE, and IE programs. From 2010 to 2011, Mapúa has proven itself at par with other first-rate universities around the world when ABET, Inc. granted its first accreditation seal in the entire East Asia to its eight Engineering programs (ChE, CE, CpE, EE, ECE, EnSE, IE, and ME) and two computing programs (B.S. Computer Science and B.S. Information Technology), putting it ahead of the rest of educational institutions in the country.
Engineering for the environment
Alongside its pursuit of academic excellence, Mapúa also endeavors to be part of the solution to the global issue of climate change. Mapúa has long been an advocate of environment conservation and engineering for the environment, beginning with the opening of its B.S. Environmental and Sanitary Engineering (EnSE) program in 1958, followed by the opening of its Master of Science in Environmental Engineering program in 2001 and Ph.D. in Environmental Engineering program in 2004. EnSE’s curriculum currently includes 17 three-unit courses related to protection and conservation of and engineering for the environment. Furthermore, the University has also included environmental engineering and environmental science courses in all of its engineering and non-engineering programs, respectively. Mapúa believes that these courses are enough introductions for all the students to understand the real situation of the environment. It is also believed that these courses are sufficient to train them to be able to design, construct, and implement sustainable solutions to environmental problems.
To complement its instruction, Mapúa included in its 2010–2020 initiatives the reduction of its carbon footprint. To initiate an institutional effort of carbon footprint reduction (CFR), the University formed a core group led by the Subject Chairperson for Chemical Engineering (ChE) Dr. Alvin R. Caparanga. Some ChE students were commissioned to conduct an initial study to compute the University’s total carbon footprint. Upon the presentation of results, the CFR committee convened to come up with necessary actions to be taken by the University to reduce its carbon footprint, which is mainly produced by its consumption of energy, water, and paper. Together with the different schools and offices, the CFR committee has gathered best practices for the conservation of its resources. Mapúa has moved to replace all of its lamps with more energy-efficient ones. This will immediately be followed by the school’s replacement of its air-conditioning units. The CFR group is currently in the process of setting targets and monitoring guidelines for this effort, aiming for full implementation in 2012.
Apart from its internal efforts, Mapúa also has extension services dedicated to address environmental concerns through education. Under its Social Orientation and Community Involvement Program (SOCIP), the University has conducted seminars on recycling, energy conservation, and use of renewable energy; information drive about global warming and pollution in the community; and tree-planting and clean-and-green projects in partnership with the government and non-government organizations.