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Aquaculture Takes Center Stage at the Central Luzon State University,
Nueva Ecija, Philippines
by Chris Brown
These are exciting times for aquaculture at CLSU. Students arriving to study aquaculture find the atmosphere charged, upbeat, and cosmopolitan. The establishment of a Ph.D. program in Aquaculture, the opening of a new Fish Museum on campus, and ongoing cooperative genetics and biotechnology programs with the University of Wales, Swansea (UK), are a few of the attractants for the best of the best aquaculture students from all around the Philippines and elsewhere.
an opportunity. It is also a declaration of high expectations. The concept behind this executive endorsement is to redirect resources to the strongest institutions, such that the most capable among them can serve national interests as effectively as possible.

The program continues its loyal service to local fish farmers but increasingly strives to reach out to a broader constituency. Independently, but at approximately the same time as the first-place ranking under the Fisheries Modernization Act,

Long recognized as a major focus within the university, aquaculture programs continue to develop at CLSU and have recently gained national recognition for their leadership. Growth and modernization of Aquaculture and Fisheries at CLSU are now national priorities in the Philippines. In a prioritization of agriculture research centers within the Philippines mandated under the Agriculture and Fisheries the Fisheries Program within the College of Fisheries at CLSU was accredited nationally. This followed a highly competitive review process, which resulted in only a few such programs gaining formal accreditation at that level. Again, the balance of strengths in academic instruction, scholarship, applied research, and extension activities contributed to the conclusion that the CLSU program is outstanding and worthy of
Hapas at Freshwater Aquaculture Center, Philippines
Modernization Act, CLSU and its flagship programs at the FAC were identified as the national leaders in freshwater aquaculture and inland fisheries sciences. This recognition follows a sustained period of programmatic development and academic accomplishments. Not the least among a long list of considerations leading to this decision is the unusually high and still-growing percentage of faculty at the FAC who have obtained their advanced degrees at prominent universities overseas. Dr. Ruben Sevilleja, FAC Director, has orchestrated much of the institutional program-building, and despite recent accomplishments, he acknowledges that his task is far from complete. The identification of CLSU/FAC as the Philippine national leader in inland capture fisheries and freshwater aquaculture is viewed not so much as an accolade but as
formal recognition. Dr. Terry Abella, Dean of the College, has described the mood of his hard-working academic staff as “triumphant.”
The prominence of Aquaculture at CLSU is a result of a significant and sustained effort on the part of a university that takes a great deal of pride in the accomplishments of this program. Past CLSU President Dr. Fortunato A. Battad loved to describe the Freshwater Aquaculture Center in his uniquely diplomatic style as “one of the best, if not the best, program” within the university. Current President Rodolfo Undan has expressed his own determination to continue the trend of growth and improvement at the FAC; he is actively committed to the fulfillment of its potential on both national and international scales.

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CRSP education development activities in country. Plans are under way to diversify, expand, and upgrade CLSUs aquaculture program and to offer one or more promising graduate students honorary and competitive scholarships. The scholarship recipient will have the opportunity to receive training in the US. This initiative dovetails well with the expanding scope of CLSUs aquaculture and fisheries programs. (See related article, above.)
arrangement with the Foundation, and they turned in a performance that disappointed no one—yields were consistently in the 5,000 kg/hectare range.

Efforts are under way to expand on these themes in the second year of the continuing CRSP Philippines project. The project will also take on responsibility for overseeing