It has always been the goal of the College of Engineering and Agro-industrial Technology to establish a concrete relationship with its alumni. Under the CEAT’s Strategic Plan 2, “Improve Research Extension/ Training Volume, Industry-Academe Linkages and Reputation”, the college started reaching out its graduates by conducting the annual CEAT Alumni Homecoming celebration after the UPLB Loyalty parade and by giving awards to outstanding CEAT Alumni from the five undergraduate programs during the annual CEAT Foundation Day celebration. In response, alumni are extending their hands to the plans and programs of the college for the benefit of the current undergraduate students.

One of the major moves done by the college in this plan is through signing Memorandum of Understanding and Memorandum of Agreement to its alumni which showcase their financial and moral support to the college financial assistance programs through the CEAT Alumni Association Inc.

For the past three years, the college was able to inked agreements with the CL Follosco Group of Companies which made the establishment of CL Follosco Innovationeering lab at the New IABE Building possible. Meanwhile, the newly implemented CEAT Adopt-a-Student program were supported through the financial donations of Turalba Foundation Inc. and Aliling Group of Companies. On the other hand, BP Integrated Technologies (BPIT) committed on giving financial support for three years (2019-2021) to students who are conducting their thesis.

Aside from these companies, CEAT student organizations’ alumni associations are also actively participating in the college’s donation drives which is used for the CEAT Study Now, Pay Later program.

The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic have been giving a lot of challenges not just to the UPLB and college administrations but also to the whole community as well. One of the action plans of the college is to shift from the traditional face-to-face classes to online classes. Since remote learning is still new to everyone, we are continuously improving our learning materials to match the needs of the students. We are also tapping our alumni to take part in the college’s programs to help students who do not have stable internet connection.

Moreover, the college has been continuously teaching the concepts of “technopreneurship” and “innovationeering” which promote creativity and innovativeness amongst its students. While online learning is the new normal, it is also a good time for the students to use their honed skills in creating things at home and promoting it online for entrepreneurship opportunities. We believe that this pandemic could never stop how creative-technical minds work and how they can use this to uplift the research capability of Filipinos.

There are more challenges to face in the future, but we know that we can accomplish everything with the help of our alumni. Their support, financially and morally, is a big help for us to take a big step ahead of uncertain times. We will not let this alliance stop, instead we will ensure that we will sustain in making strong ties with our alumni despite the circumstances. (Mary Jane F. Gallardo)