Saturday, October 20, 2012

UOG Culture and Learning Forum

The University of Guam's Enrollment & Student Services in collaboration with the School of Education and Human Resources Office held a meaningful Culture & Learning Forum on October 19, 2012 with focus on "enriching and contextualizing teaching and learning in Pacific Island settings to improve achievement."

Participants were enlightened by various cultural speeches. Among a few of the highlights are the following:

"I have my own story, my own identity, and I need to accept that," said Dr. Isebong Asang, Palau Community College. Asang said that it's essential to have "knowledge, history and truth specific to Palau." MESULANG, Dr. Asang, for the inspirational speech!

Dr. Nicholas Goetzfridt shared that we must genuinely focus on ethnomathematics, the language of numbers. He said that it "requires different people around the world, and in this case the Pacific, to adapt (relevant mathemathetics)."

Traditional ethnomathematics in the Pacific involve "navigators of the past, navigators of the present, and values to live on," Goetzfridt said. He stressed the traditional ideas of patterns and that if the indigenous mathematics is unable to be carried out, it is done through imperial colonial means.

Our traditional mathematics need to be preserved in education, because it is the essence of communal identity. In fact, the UH Project MACIMISE is doing research to recover mathematical ideas and curriculum ideas to be used in schools. This will allow us to imagine with purpose and resolve for our own ethnomathematical identity. To get an insight of the experience on one of the UH candidates' first phase of Project MACIMISE, visit

Dr. Frankie Santos Laanan, SOE Dean focused on "Sieving Through Asian and Pacific Island Data on Culture Variation and Achievement." He mentioned about the importance of STEM. He further shared videos and websites to provide explicit, yet meaningful visuals pertaining to its relevance. Check out for more information.

Students in the videos shared powerful messages, such as the following: "I'm just as good as anyone else in college." Another student said, "I deserve to be here. I work just as hard as anyone here."
The CARE was also highlighted and its relevance in research regarding Asian Americans, risk factors of AAPI students, and other critical areas of research. Laanan also presented statistics and terminologies, such as MSI-Minority serving institution and AANAPSI-Asian Americans Native Americans Pacific Islanders.

Laanan expressed the need to expand knowledge, broaden awareness, and build institutional capacity. He shared DOE and UOG data to stress the critical needs. He mentioned that of the 31,000 students in DOE, there is a high ESL population. This entails that we are faced with the challenge to meet the unique needs of ELLs.

Unfortunately, Guam's latest SAT10 performance data shows low scores. This makes us question what's happening in these areas. "What are we going to do about it? How do we serve these students? What do we do to ensure that they understand?" Laanan asked.

He presented student demographics, trends, enrollment by ethnicity, gender, and status. He also shared that for the UOG English placement, 2/3 placed in developmental English (EN085 and EN100).
Laanan further shared retention and graduation tracking by program statistics, so that we can reflect and analyze the data. He then showed a Robert Feldman video that mentioned we need to take action, so that we don't endanger college student success. We need to provide opportunities for first year experiences before college students arrive on campus.

Dr. Michael Bevacqua focused on decolonization. He said that Guam is a colony and shared the expansive definition of decolonization. He stated that some people think that "if he (colonial power) ever leaves, all the things disappear" or "so long as the colonizer is in power, you are out of luck."
He questioned, "What is the role the university should take in regards to this situation?" He stressed that we should "look more regional for things," because it's important that we tap on our own resources that are within reach.

UOG President, Dr. Robert Underwood, also highlighted the importance of culture and education. "Education is one through which cultural knowledge is formulated," he said.

Underwood said, "It takes the strength of soul for a child to struggle, to travel, to succeed." He reminded participants to make a difference. "As you navigate, you must help them learn," he said.
He highlighted culture as a process and that we must understand where those places are. Underwood further questioned, "What do we do about our students? What do we know about our students? Did we do anything about it (data performance)?"

Enjoy the following snapshots taken during the forum!

Dr. Robert Underwood, UOG President, says his speech on culture and learning.

Dr. Isebong Asang, Palau Community College Professor, conducts her presentation titled, "Palauan Epistemology: Implications on Teaching & Learning."

Dr. Frankie Santos Laanan, SOE Dean, conducts his presentation titled, "Sieving Through Asian and Pacific Island Data on Culture Variation and Achievement."

Dr. Michael Lujan Bevacqua conducts his presentation titled, "Decolonization at the University of Guam."

Larry Gamboa, UOG Chief Human Resources Officer, welcomes the participants of the Culture & Learning Forum.

Dr. Nicholas Goetzfridt conducts his presentation titled, "Ethnomathematics in Micronesia."

Thursday, October 18, 2012



As part of the Sinajana Fiesta activities this year, you are cordially invited to the exhibit opening of I SONGSONG SINAJANA:  A PHOTO COLLECTION OF SINAJANA this coming WEDNESDAY, October 24, 2012 at 7:30 p.m. at the Sinajana Community Center exhibit hall.  The photo exhibit showcases the L. Ron Hubbard Collection of black and white photos of the resettlement of Sinajana village by WWII refugees from both old Sinajana, Hagatna and surrounding areas.  As a result of the WWII resettlement, this ancient village (indicated in 17th century records) became the largest village in Guam with many residents establishing themselves as parishioners of St. Jude Church.  The collection dates from late 19th century to post Urban Renewal period.  The exhibit was made possible through a grant from the Guam Visitors Bureau as a way of augmenting and enhancing Chamorro cultural celebrations.  Photos were also provided by Sinajana residents, the Capuchin Collection, and the Micronesian Area Research Center at UOG.

The multi-page exhibit catalogue will be provided to the first 100 signed-in guests--one per family.

PLEASE COME, SEE and ENJOY OUR EXHIBIT of over 50 photos.  And, please kindly pass this invitation on to relatives, friends, off-island guests and military visitors.  The Exhibit Hall will also be opened from Thursday, Oct. 25 to Monday, Oct. 29, 10a.m. to 5:00p.m.

Peter Onedera, Chairperson & PIBBA International President

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Guam will host the 32nd Annual International PIBBA Conference

Get ready for the upcoming PIBBA Conference in Guam in July 2013! Stay tuned, and visit or for updates!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Join us for the SOE Alumni Association Membership Drive

Please join us for the SOE Alumni Association membership drive to be held during the Guam Council IRA meeting on Saturday, October 13, 2012 from 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. at the Guam Aurora Resort & Spa (Old Hotel Okura). Visit us at the SOE Alumni Association table this Saturday, see any officer at the Guam IRA meetings, or check out our website at for further details.

The SOE Alumni Association supports SOE’s mission of effectively preparing educators and other education personnel for professional per-formance in diverse cultural contexts. It serves as a connection for which SOE alumni can give back to their alma mater by sharing their talents, resources, etc. in different SOE events. It further serves as a source for developing alumni pride, spirit, and life-long commitments to the School of Education.

We hope to see you soon!  Si Yu'os Ma'ase'!

Community invited to UOG Alumni Association Family Expo

The University of Guam Alumni Association invites the community to a Family Expo from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, October 13, 2012 at the UOG Field House. There will be games and activities, jumpers, a photo booth, food and drink sampling, raffle prizes and more. For more information, call UOG Alumni Association President, Robert Paulino, at 647-6841 or email

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Guam Micronesia Island Fair Eventful

Hafa Adai!  Despite the rain, the Guam Micronesia Island Fair was meaningful.  It is the annual signature cultural event of the Guam Visitors Bureau with presentations of the vibrant cultures of Micronesia. This year’s theme, Celebrating 25 Years of Unity Through Culture, commemorates and reinforces the solidarity we have shared through our arts and traditions.

Participants were able to experience the culture and arts of Micronesia on October 5, 6 and 7.  Delegations from the Federated States of Micronesia, Rota, Saipan and Tinian and the republics of Kiribati, Nauru, the Marshall Islands and Palau, gathered on Guam to commemorate the region’s largest cultural event. They had the opportunity to meet Micronesia’s master carvers, blacksmiths, traditional fishing experts, jewelers, weavers, dancers, musicians and chefs.


Source:  Guam Visitors Bureau
Images:  Pacific Daily News

Thursday, October 4, 2012

SOE Display Successful at UOG's 60th Anniversary: Celebrating the Triton Spirit and the Center for Island Sustainability Green Energy Career Expo

SOE held a meaningful display of its education programs at the University of Guam's 60th Anniversary: Celebrating the Triton Spirit and the Center for Island Sustainability Green Energy Career Expo on Saturday, September 15, 2012 from 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. at the Micronesia Mall. Several local business organizations were on hand to meet with students to discuss career opportunities. The University of Guam's colleges and programs were also available to provide information.  Entertainment was provided by the Alumni. Enjoy the following snapshots taken during this special event.

SOE Family with UOG President Dr. Robert Underwood, SVP Dr. Helen Whippy, and SOE Dean Frankie Laanan.

Pictured L-R:  Dr. Geri James, UOG SVP Dr. Helen Whippy, Dr. Lourdes Ferrer, and Dr. Matilda Naputi Rivera.

Pictured L-R:  SOE Dean Frankie Laanan, Dr. Geri James, Dr. Catherine Stoicovy, UOG SVP Dr. Helen Whippy, Dr. Lourdes Ferrer, and Dr. Matilda Naputi Rivera.

Pictured L-R:  Dr. Matilda Naputi Rivera, Dr. Michelle Santos, and Dr. Jacqui Cyrus.

UOG students are all smiles at the SOE display table.