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Last year, we continued the Michaelean journey to significance and transformation by taking a giant leap to determine whether SMCL’s operations are globally competitive.

 

The College underwent a rigorous process that put to the fore the Michaelean community’s commitment and passion in ensuring quality in its operations and service delivery meriting for it to be ISO certified. TUV Rheinland awarded SMCL its ISO certification on an institutional level on 24 April 2014.

 

This is truly a remarkable feat. While earning the distinction of being the first to be ISO certified in the 1st District of Laguna, it likewise posed bigger challenges. To gain the competitive advantage for the College, the ISO certification must be put into action by embracing service excellence in the truest sense.

 

This year saw us aiming to achieve higher perceived quality; higher customer satisfaction levels; improved customer perception; and lower operational costs. We had to address the following setbacks: following thru, meeting deadlines; and full understanding of standards. On the macro level, with the Asean integration this 2015 and the implementation of the senior high school in 2016, education is once more put at a most critical crucial point.

 

We need to identify strategies to respond to the challenges of transition, competitiveness, accessibility, and sustainability beyond 2016. We have no choice but to embrace and adapt to turn all these into opportunities that will improve and enhance our service delivery. The future demands a collective responsibility, a healthy, convergence that will create a happy, caring, and nurturing environment where the commitment of one is the commitment of all.

 

Let me end by citing Dr. Jamil Salmi, tertiary education expert & former World Bank tertiary education coordinator, whom I was privileged to hear during the 5th COCOPEA National Congress on “Leading Philippine Education for Global Excellence”: “Excellence requires time, hard work and, importantly, not becoming complacent. It is essential that the university continue to challenge itself to improve and maintain a sense of urgency even when it experiences successes. Building excellence remains a long term endeavor requiring thoughtful and measured approaches for sustainability.”

 

My dear Michaeleans, we made the right choice when we embraced international certification. It addresses a new dimension - that of comparability with international standards. As an added bonus, in CHED’s typology scheme, SMCL qualified to apply for an autonomous college from the points earned being ISO certified. Let not our fears paralyze us. Let us welcome the opportunities ahead of us and act with urgency.

 

Once again let me express my immeasurable appreciation to our stakeholders for their continued trust, support and patronage. To the men and women of SMCL who have always shared their individual and collective best, I take my hat off to you!

 

Lourdes Almeda-Sese, EdD

President and CEO

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