Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Event Post: PLDT Digital Campus Suite Launch at Shangri-La Makati brought by PLDT SME Nation, Microsoft Philippines, Samsung Philippines, and Smart

Last August 26, 2015, I was invited by Millet Liberato of DDB to the launch of an innovative tech program of PLDT called Digital Campus Suite. The venue was at Shangri-La Makati at 10 am. The initial gathering was a press conference aimed at promoting this brand new venture while the second part was a grand celebration complete with a speech from Br. Jun Erguiza of COCOPEA and the stunning performances of the UP and NU Pep Squads. The bigger ceremony was kicked off by drum medleys by the Ateneo Blue Babble Battalion and the La Salle Animo Squad. Apart from these offerings, the event also hosted a short skit performed by Improv Manila as regards the practical application of this new project. 

We got to know about the idea, aims, and capabilities of the Digital Campus Suite. It is a package partnership deal offered by PLDT SME, in cooperation with Microsoft Philippines and SMART Communications Inc. to primary, secondary, and tertiary educational institutions all over the country. The target of this program is the digitization of the learning experience in schools to simply the process and make it more stimulating and interactive for a generation that relies so heavily on technology. In this sense, the program takes advantage of the fast growing trend of technological utilization to create a generation that is more adept to the changing whims of today's world. 

Before we move on, let's check the statistics. The year 2015 has seen a sharp spike of over 50% in jobs that require basic to advanced technology skills. The number will shoot up to 77% in the next decade. Worldwide, over 14 million jobs will be created on the IT industry. Thus, there is an imperative need for tech savvy college graduates to fill this burgeoning demand in the job market and thus end the 50% unemployment rate of the country's employable youth. The Digital Campus Suite aims to just do that. With its emphasis on the use of Microsoft Office and other business software, it stands to create a well-rounded college graduate that doesn't lack the rudiments of a technologically literate employable graduate.

The Digital Campus Suite equips the schools with high-speed internet to cater to population of hundreds, if not thousands, of student in a particular, institution. In turn, the students can use the powerful tools supplied by the Microsoft IT Academy program to learn basic and advanced technological skills and courses that prepare students to become competent professionals. The Microsoft IT Academy program is a highly advanced software programs that makes the most out of cloud technology to connect the students to their teachers without the limitations of distance. Through this platform, the students will be able to use Microsoft Office 365 to draft, edit, and collaborate their reports, homework,  and other school requirements through the ease of the electronic and virtual world. Gone are the days when students would use the good old fashioned manila paper, snowflake correction fluid, the type writer, or the once ubiquitous Dewey Decimal System to create their output. Furthermore, students and teachers can meet using the Skype for Business Application without the limits of distance. Thus, teachers who are not physically present in school can still give their lessons and transmit their ideas through the electronic media. Lastly, the distractions of Facebook will not be able to bother students who need the advantage of group forums or pages to disseminate information. Yammer meets this need. The app is a social networking platform where the members can connect in group discussions and manage information pertaining to their classes. It is a highly secure and controlled online environment where the discussions can be highly moderated and tempered.

Software is not the only benefit of this package. Hardware is another integral benefit. Under the program, these schools will receive a generous supply of tablets and computers installed with the aforementioned software packages complete with legitimate licenses. Furthermore, the schools will be given wi-fi-equipment that will be able to give high-speed hotspots for a thorough and complete e-learning experience.

Availing the program will provide even more benefits aside from hardware and software. Students under this program will be able to avail of certification programs to formalize their learning experience for Microsoft software. This will enable them to avail of even more career opportunities in the tech industry. Also, preset curriculum modules will help assist students in learning skills that will enable them to succeed in life. Apart from these two, the schools will also be provided marketing resources for business programs. Lastly, the specialized Dreamspark software will be given for students to learn web development and design.

Through this program, PLDT SME Nation hopes to empower a new generation that can master an ICT System - a system that has solidly become the mainstay for rapid economic growth in today's world.

The story in pictures:

Br. Jun Erguiza delivering his keynote speech


The true application of collaboration: the Ateneo Blue Babble Battalion and the DLSU Animo Squad

The UP Pep Squad strutting their stuff

The Digital Campus presscon

A shot of the Ateneo Blue Babble Battalion

The NU Pep Squad

The Lunch Menu - a la carte

The NU Pep Squad

The Juicy Lapu-Lapu Fillet

The Bloggers

Ms. Millet

Special Thanks to:

Mars Callo of for the pictures
Millet Liberato of DDB for the Invite

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