PhilDev and the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) continue to work to establish a network of Technopreneurship Hubs (TechHubs) hosted in Philippine universities strategically located nationwide. These TechHub universities will serve as Centers for Technopreneurship Excellence with whom surrounding universities and entrepreneurship communities can collaborate. The TechHubs are expected to spur innovation and entrepreneurship in various regions of the Philippines.
The University of San Carlos (USC) in Cebu City is one of PhilDev’s TechHubs. They have been actively involved in several initiatives pursuing the overall objective of the TechHubs to strengthen the linkage among the government, private sector, academe, and the community, to develop a thriving startup ecosystem, particularly in the Central Visayas region.
On January 22, USC launched the USC TechHub known as “Carolinian BRIDGES” in its Talamban Campus in Cebu City. The acronym BRIDGES was derived from Building Research and Innovation for the Development and Growth of the Enterprise & Society. It is a center where innovators and game changers can collaborate and develop products that solve real world problems.
This was followed by a signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) by Dean Taboada, Dean of USC College of Engineering, and executives from private industry partners like Zoog Technologies Inc.; GT Cosmetics Manufacturing Inc.; TrustE Web Services Technologies; Lexmark Research & Development Corp.; Fluor Daniel; Autoliv Cebu Safety Manufacturing., Tsuneishi Technical Services (Phils.) Inc.; Minebea Mitsumi ; and Knowles Electronics Philippines. Through the MOU, they aim to build active linkages and an active ecosystem network with industrial networks through exchange learning sessions, On-the-Job training and faculty immersion, collaborative research, curriculum development of disciplines, and technology innovation undertakings
Innovation enablers were also invited as speakers for the forum, with the objective of promoting and strengthening the Technopreneurship culture in the region. Present during the event were Bryan Ybañez, Research Specialist of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Region 7; Maria Elena Arbon, Assistant Regional Director of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Region 7; Rufino Olay III, Vice-President for Business Operations of the Artificial Intelligence (AI) Center for Excellence; and Fr. Aleksander Gaut, SVD, PhD, Vice-President for Academic Affairs of USC. Jones Castro, PhilDev Executive Vice Chairman, was also present during the Regional Forum and Pitch Competition.
Aside from the USC TechHub-Carolinian BRIDGES launch, a Technopreneurship Forum and Pitch Competition was also conducted as part of the activity lineup of the TechHub. The pitch competition aims to showcase the talent and innovations of USC’s students and alumni. This is aligned to the TechHub’s objective of propagating entrepreneurial thinking among the students and alumni.
“We are really excited with the new developments happening in our TechHub. We believe that the opening of the USC Tech Hub-Carolinian BRIDGES will further spur innovation. This is just the beginning and we are looking forward to implement more projects and programs that would help us implement best standards in developing innovations and enterprises that are globally scalable and responsive to local needs at the same time.” said Dr. Angelo Cabije,TechHub USC Manager.
“Since we at PhilDev started our partnership with University of San Carlos four years ago, we mark our journey with USC today with another milestone, the Carolinian Bridges, its Technology Business Incubator (TBI). USC is part of a nationwide Technopreneurship Hub (TechHub) initiative with CHED, wherein 15 TechHubs will be geographically and strategically located throughout the country to raise the entrepreneurship standards and spur innovation at the HEIs in its region and increase linkages with the industry and public sectors in their respective communities.” said Mr. Jones Castro, PhilDev Executive Vice Chairman.
At present, PhilDev is officially engaged with six (6) TechHubs from all over the country. The goal is to expand to more universities and HEIs to support the implementation of the Technopreneurship 101 subject that was rolled out in all 539 HEIs in the Philippines that offer engineering programs starting academic year 2018-2019.