British Council, CHED partner for P117-M ACT-IHE project

Published January 25, 2021, 12:48 PM

by Alexandria Dennise San Juan

The British Council and the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) has partnered to implement a P117-million project for Filipino students to have wider access to quality higher education and make Philippine universities more globally competitive.

Minister Nigel Adams and CHED Director for International Affairs Atty. Lily Milla during the signing ceremony of the collaboration between the British Council and CHED held at the British Ambassador’s residence last November 2020.
(Photo from CHED Director for International Affairs Lily Milla / MANILA BULLETIN)

In a statement, the British Council said the project called Access and Competitiveness through Internationalization of Higher Education (ACT-IHE) aims to create new transnational education partnerships between the United Kingdom (UK) and Philippine universities.

The project will also support students to earn internationally recognized qualifications and enhance the use of English as a medium of education in the country.

“This partnership will expand bilateral cooperation in higher education between the Philippines and the UK. Through the project, we will facilitate exchanges of expertise and create new academic partnerships between our two countries,” UK Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office (FCDO) Minister for Asia Nigel Adams said during his visit to Manila last November.

British Council Country Director Pilar Prudencio noted that the three-year project will contribute to the development of people’s potential in areas critical for the economic and social development of the Philippines.

“With the help of CHED, we will provide transnational education scholarship grants to Filipinos. These grants will focus on niche areas in response to the Philippine government’s goals of building local expertise in national priority areas, especially in academic fields where there are few or no local programs available,” Prudencio added.

CHED Director for International Affairs Lily Milla said the Commission is optimistic that the new project will ensure a quality higher education system in the country.

“As the education sector moves to recover from the impact of the pandemic, we are confident that our project with the British Council will help build the resilience of the higher education sector as we explore and create flexible, innovative models of collaboration and delivery of higher education programs,” Milla said.

According to the British Council, the ACT-IHE project builds on the success of its previous partnership with CHED, as well as the Joint Development of Niche Programmes through Philippines-UK Linkages which pioneered UK-Philippine transnational education degrees in niche areas such as data science, tropical biological oceanography, and sustainable food systems.

“Through transnational education, Filipinos can now access UK degrees in the Philippines and gain global qualifications through postgraduate programs offered by Philippine institutions in partnership with UK universities,” it added.

The latest partnership between the British Council and CHED came during the global celebration of the International Day of Education with the theme “Recover and Revitalize Education for the COVID-19 Generation” last Jan. 24.