25 May 2022

AUN-CA updated its advancement on the 7th AUN-CA Annual Meeting

AUN Writer Team

By Hannah Louise P. Dimayuga, AUN Intern

The ASEAN University Network on Culture and the Arts (AUN-CA) held its 7th Annual Meeting on 6th May 2022 online via Zoom platform. The meeting was organized by the De La Salle University (PH) and attended by Faculty and Deans of prestigious universities in Brunei, China, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam. AUN-CA is a thematic network composed of universities in the ASEAN that uphold and maintain culture and the arts.

The meeting kick-started with opening remarks from Dr. Choltis Dhirathiti, the Executive Director of the ASEAN University Network (AUN). Dr. Choltis emphasized the role of the AUN-CA in crafting activities that can be conducted online and in person, being flexible despite the challenges of the pandemic. Moreover, Dr. Choltis highlighted the member countries to embrace their culture and become more artistic in portraying their heritage.

Following the welcoming remarks was a keynote speech from Atty. Dulce Blanca Punzalan, the Corporate Secretary and Trustee at the Asosasyon ng Musikong Pilipino, World Bamboo Ambassador, United Nations Global Impact Representative, and Chief Executive Officer at Crea 8 Innov 8 Marketing. Atty. Punzalan’s speech focused on the theme of “The Role of the ASEAN+3 Educational Institutions for the Recovery and Growth of the Creative Industries in the Region”, in which she discussed the effects of the pandemic on creative industries. She talked about the role of technology that not only does technology harness education to young children, but it also changes the path of the ASEAN market into a digitized e-commerce market. Finally, Atty. Punzalan presented ways to improve the digitalization of ASEAN small to medium enterprises (SMEs) through innovative technologies, business continuity planning and disaster resilience, and enabling the environment.

Afterwards, the meeting officially called to order with the discussion on the 7th Annual Meeting agenda. The first agenda was the introduction to AUN-CA, in which Ms. Glorife Samodio, the Chair of the AUN-CA, briefly introduced the history, goals, past projects, and membership benefits of AUN-CA to the new members. The next agenda focused on the NUS Asia Rising Film Festival and NUS Arts Festival Report. Ms. Mary Loh Chieu Kwuan of the National University of Singapore reported the success of Asia Rising, noting that 14 films from 5 universities in Brunei, Philippines, and Singapore were featured for a screening with a viewership of 1,028 views. Moreover, Ms. Kwuan discussed a project series entitled “To the Beat” which required dancers to perform a brief choreography without background music and musicians to create music based on the movements of the dancers.

The third agenda was the Needs Assessment Results in which Ms. Samodio presented to the members a survey that needs to be answered as a basis for future activities of the network.  The following agenda was about memberships. Ms. Samodio briefly discussed the concern on AUNCA’s membership and representation that lacked and caused a slow-paced resolution of projects conducted by the network. Several internal problems also arose, such as the abundance of new staff despite limitations on appointments and the difficulty in voting for a resolution on the problem. Moreover, the AUN-CA has already acknowledged 7 affiliates in the Philippines.  In line with this, Ms. Samodio asked for opinion on whether the network should accept new affiliates, and how will the network expand and maintain the influx of members. The members voted on the continuity of accepting affiliates and expanding membership to other countries.

Finally, the last agenda focused on the thematic network board. Ms Samodio briefly clarified the term duration of the board to be 3 years. However, the pandemic hindered activities that should have been conducted in 2020. Hence, many of the activities planned for 2020 were delayedly conducted in 2021. In this case, 2020 was considered a “non-active” year for the AUN-CA, which urged the AUN to extend the term of the current board to another year and call for an election in 2022. The members voted on having an online election in July, with a call for candidacy to be conducted by June. Lastly, the concern in the TOA with honorary members of the board being dependent on the hosting of AYCF, despite having already served a term, was resolved through a decision that the officership will not depend on the ACYF hosting.

The 7th Annual Meeting of the AUN-CA ended with a closing remark from Dr. Ramolete, thanking all the members for organizing and joining the event.