SorSU reaches another milestone — holds ceremonial blessing and ribbon cutting of newly established Sorsogon Food Development Research Center & Herbarium Sorsogonense

As part of the institution’s strong efforts and relentless commitment toward realizing its vision of becoming a global research university, an official ceremonial blessing and ribbon-cutting event for the newly established Sorsogon Food Development Research Center as well as Herbarium Sorsogonense, a Botanical research center, was held last May 23, 2024, at the Sorsogon State University (SorSU), Sorsogon City Campus.

Dr. Telesforo D. Escoto (Campus Director, Sorsogon City Campus), in his welcome address, highlighted that the event is a key milestone for SorSU, taking forward to inaugurate innovative facilities dedicated to advancing research and development in the fields of food technology and botanical studies.

“As we cut the ribbon and bless the centers today, we are opening doors and possibilities in affirming our dedication to scientific incidence and environmental stewardship… We are confident enough that these centers will become hubs for education, collaboration, and discovery.”

Subsequently, the rationales of the two research centers were respectively delivered by Dr. Fely A. Habla (Head, Sorsogon Food Development Research Center) and Prof. Teresa Haide R. Belgica, in lieu of Dr. Richard V. Dumilag (Head, Herbarium Sorsogonense).

Dr. Habla emphasized that the Sorsogon Food Development Research Center will offer research development and extension programs & services to promote interactions among faculty, students, scholars, and the industry toward its goals of academic excellence and innovative solutions.

She remarked, “Sorsogon Food Development Research Center will provide a wide range of services from the process of creating, processing, and quality testing of locally made products out of local and natural resources. It also aims to assist the and reach upcoming business and local MSMEs in line with food certification, laboratory analysis, shelf-life analysis, and food labeling.”

Meanwhile, according to Prof. Belgica, the primary objective of Herbarium Sorsogonense is to collect, preserve, and document the rich and diverse species found within Sorsogon. She added that Herbarium Sorsogonense has stood out as the sole internationally recognized repository of plant specimens in the entire Bicol region, which holds an extensive collection of marine algae with a modest addition of terrestrial plants from Sorsogon.

“HS will be led by Phycologist, Dr. Richard V. Dumilag who will serve as marine plants species curator and yours truly [Dr. Belgica] as terrestrial plant curator to ensure comprehensive and meticulous curator of our collected species. Thus, Herbarium Sorsogonense conducts high-quality scientific research of plants in Sorsogon.”

Further, SUC President III, Dr. Geraldine F. De Jesus, underscored that the simultaneous launching and sanctifying of two research centers will further enhance the capabilities of the institution along with botanical studies and food development.

“I believe that since we have already embarked on this institutional journey towards excellence, it is only reasonable to follow it through until we achieve success. And once we reach that level, to sustain it and find new directions and ways to further expand… And as we expand our services beyond the boundaries of our province, these research centers will also become repertoires that we can share with the rest of the nation and even the world.”

Meanwhile, Engr. Robert O. Dizon (Executive Director, DOST-MIRDC) expressed in his message that he hopes that the Sorsogon Food Development Research Center and Herbarium Sorsogonense, like DOST, can likewise offer solutions and create opportunities for the community.

The ribbon cutting of the two research centers was led by SorSU President De Jesus and Engr. Dizon and facilitated by Ma. Lourdes D. Pancho (Provincial Director, DTI-Sorsogon), Senior Research Specialist Ms. Patricia Andes (representative of Engr. Sandro B. Noguera (Provincial Director, DOST-PSTO Sorsogon), Dr. Ryan V. Dio (VPRET), and Dr. Jhonner D. Ricafort (SorSU-VPAA), which was followed by Rite of Blessing. Further, the closing address of the ceremonial blessing and ribbon cutting was provided by Dr. Ryan V. Dio (SorSU-VPRET).

These remarkable milestones demonstrate SorSU’s vision to become an internationally recognized research university through one of its undertakings of establishing innovative research infrastructures and interdisciplinary collaborative partnerships, not only toward advancing scientific knowledge but also driving positive change and serving the broader community at local, and national, and even global levels. (SorSU PIO)