DE LA SALLE UNIVERSITY (DLSU) and Ateneo de Manila University (ADMU) have inked a three-year linkage in social entrepreneurship and sustainable development.
The pact was sealed through a ceremonial signing of a memorandum of understanding on September 5 held at the DLSU Campus in Manila.
Through the Lasallian Social Enterprise for Economic Development (LSEED) Center and Ateneo Center for Social Entrepreneurship (ACSEnt ), both academic institutions have agreed to explore joint efforts in the promotion of social entrepreneurship and sustainability among higher education institutions, mobilization of internal and external stakeholders, and sharing of good practices.
LSEED Center is a pioneer of community-student partnership in formation and social-enterprise development in the country, more than over 70 social enterprises, and 350 social entrepreneurs as part of its portfolio under 11 local and international programs, including the “#WeCAN International Boot Camp for Asean+ Japan, China, and South Korea,” “Angat Buhay Young Social Entrepreneurs Program,” and “KAagapay sa Yugto-yugto at Abot Kayang Negosyo.” It is the home of multiawarded social enterprises Nama Microgreens, Sagup Negros, Twelve Topaz, as well as Lasallian technology inventor Angel Palma of AirDisc, among others.
In 2019, LSEED Center was recognized as first-runner up for “Academic Leadership in Social Innovation (Asia Pacific)” under In_Pact Asia. It was the “Sustainable Development Goals Initiative of the Year” first-runner up awarded in Asia Pacific by the Accreditation of Entrepreneurial and Engaged Universities in June 2023 in Barcelona, Spain.
The center currently chairs the National Association of Social Enterprise Educators and Administrators, a regional council-member of the Institute for Social Entrepreneurship in Asia, and is a member of the Asean Learning Network and Collegiate Entrepreneurs Organization.
Meanwhile, ACSEnt is ADMU’s center committed to foster social transformation and contribute to nation-building by cultivating a vibrant social entrepreneurship sector in the Philippines.
The first university social-entrepreneurship center in the Philippines, ACSEnt has been at the forefront of social enterprise development in the country through programs like the “BPI Sinag” University Awards, social impact clinics, and the annual National Social Enterprise Conference, among others.
ADMU also boasts of alumni social entrepreneurs who have been trailblazers in the sector like Reese Fernandez Ruiz of R2R, Anna Meloto-Wilk of Human Nature, and Krie Lopez of Messy Bessy, to name just a few. ACSEnt is also co-chair of the Institute for Social Entrepreneurship in Asia—a regional center undertaking research, education and platform building on social entrepreneurship.
Both universities are members of the PRESENT Coalition—an alliance of social-enterprise stakeholders lobbying for the passage of the “Poverty Reduction through Social Entrepreneurship,” or “PRESENT” Bill.
Key officials of both universities graced the event. DLSU attendees included Br. Bernard Oca FSC (president), Dr. Robert Roleda (provost), Dr. Laurene Chua-Garcia (vice president for External Relations and Internationalization), Fritzie Ian De Vera (VP for Lasallian Mission), Johannes Leo Badillo (Strategic Communications Office executive director), and Dr. Norby Salonga (LSEED Center founding director).
Ateneo officials who participated in the event were Fr. Roberto Yap SJ (president), Dr. Maria Luz Vilches (vice president for Higher Education), Dr. Roberto Martin N. Galang (John Gokongwei School of Management dean), Maria Teresa D. Villanueva (University Marketing and Communications director), and Ana Marina A. Tan (ACSEnt director).