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Outstanding Librarian 2018:
Elizabeth R. Peralejo

Elizabeth R. Peralejo

The Professional Regulation Commission conferred the Outstanding Professional Librarian of the Year Award on Elizabeth R. Peralejo on 21 June 2018. The citation reads:
For demonstrating professional excellence and relentless dedication to her 40 years of involvement in the field of librarianship as shown in her significant contribution to the advancement of the profession through the revision of the Bachelor of Library and Information Science (BLIS) program, the drafting of the Code of Ethics for Filipino Librarians, the formulation of Standards for Philippine Libraries, the preparation of Minimum Requirements for Higher Education Institution Libraries Common to all Programs, and the monitoring of library schools to ensure that they conform with existing policies, standards, and guidelines; for being a sought-after speaker and trainer in seminar-workshops and conferences, allowing her to sit as a member of the Education and Training Section of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions; for spearheading various activities for the successful celebration of Library and Information Services Month, the National Book Week, and Librarians Day; for initiating and instituting changes in the operation of the national accredited professional organization of librarians such as its rules of proceedings during annual conventions and general assemblies, guidelines in the management of funds and grants, as well as the holding of national conferences; and for her active participation in socio-civic and religious organizations dedicated for the welfare of people with disabilities and in the renewal of families.

Thanks to Jamie Peralejo for the citation and photo.


Category: Librarians—Awardees

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Why is the National Library headed by a Non-Librarian?





"Only qualified and licensed librarians shall be employed as librarians in all government libraries."

On 19 Jan 2018, I filed a complaint with the Ombudsman that questioned the appointment of a non-librarian as Director of the National Library of the Philippines. On 14 Feb 2018, I filed a supplement to the original complaint that charged the current Director with illegal practice of the profession.

This blog post shares the documents that I submitted to the Ombudsman, provides links to relevant sites (where, for example, you can verify for yourself if the current #NationalNonLibrarian is, in fact, not a licensed librarian), and links to all the articles and shows that have mentioned the complaint.

Just to be clear, I am NOT interested in the position. I filed my complaint because we have to safeguard the integrity and values of ALL professions by making sure that only licensed professionals are allowed to practice.

Here's the PDF of the complaint that I submitted on 19 Jan 2018:


Here's the PDF of the supplement to the Jan 19 complaint, which I submitted on 14 Feb 2018:

Here are the relevant links:
THE LAW
RA 9246 - AN ACT MODERNIZING THE PRACTICE OF LIBRARIANSHIP IN THE PHILIPPINES THEREBY REPEALING REPUBLIC ACT NO. 6966
"SEC 31. Employment of Librarians. – Only qualified and licensed librarians shall be employed as librarians in all government libraries."

THE JOB ADVERTISEMENT
As posted by the Civil Service Commission:
"Qualification Requirements
• Others : must be a licensed librarian"

WHO IS THE NATIONAL NON-LIBRARIAN?
National Library welcomes new director
This press release does not tell us much. Neither does Google.

IN HIS OWN WORDS
Excerpt from the message read by a subordinate at the national congress of librarians in Bacolod last November 2017. (Yes, he could not even be bothered to deliver it himself.)

"...The President himself had witnessed the destitute situation of majority of the Filipino people. With the numerous impoverished places he visited, he resolved that should he win the presidency, he would prioritize the majority who have been denied even of basic services from the government. His compassion over the poorest of the poor has been marked in his heart.

And so, when he won, he handpicked the people whom he believed could run with this vision. I am among those designated, not because I am the most qualified for the position, but because I have the trust and confidence of the President. To work with him closely in delivering government services to the majority who have been denied for these benefits for decades.

I have worked for Mayor Duterte, now President of this Republic, within fifteen years. My work as among the human resource officers was to hire, to deploy, and if ineffective, to fire. Over and above this, I handled some confidential matters for the mayor. I am appointed in this agency for a mission, ensuring that all citizens, especially the poor and other vulnerable groups, have access to NLP services..."

IS HE A LICENSED LIBRARIAN?
See the answer for yourself at the website of the Professional Regulation Commission:
Verification of Professional Licenses

THE NATIONAL ASSOCIATION'S POSITION
The only one available online before I filed my complaint:
PLAI Statement of Concern
The one that was uploaded after I filed my complaint:
Statement of Concern of which copies were sent to the PRC and CSC

THE CODE OF ETHICS
Code of Ethics for Philippine Librarians
Sec. 2.3: "Librarians shall not assist in the unauthorized practice of librarianship."

WHY AM I DOING THIS?
Why I became a librarian.

The following links lead to online articles and TV segments that have tackled this concern.

2 April 2018
Philippine Daily Inquirer
23 February 2018
Rappler
13 February 2018
Philippine Star
5 February 2018
Philippine Star
2 February 2018
Philippine Daily Inquirer
1 February 2018
Philippine Star
31 January 2018
CNN Philippines
28 January 2018
Philippine Daily Inquirer
Rappler
26 January 2018
ABS-CBN News
25 January 2018
ABS-CBN News
Esquire Philippines
Philippine Star
24 January 2018
Philippine Daily Inquirer
ABS-CBN News
GMA News Online
Philippine Star



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Hot Filipino Librarians

A few weeks ago, I was surprised to find my photo and name in a list of the hottest Filipino librarians. To be perfectly honest, I don't think I belong on the list. And I'm not being modest. Just take a look at the photos below ;-)

Note: All photos below are used with permission. And everyone on the list is a licensed librarian, except where indicated otherwise.



ISHEE finished her master's degree in library and information science in 2015, and is currently working at a law library. Her husband suggested using the pic above. He's sweet, right?



VINCE was a varsity basketball player before he traded balls and hoops for books and computers. He still manages, however, to score points with the college girls who line up to ask him questions... at the reference desk.



DIANNE, a magna cum laude graduate from the premier state university, is currently a full-time law student who's also studying for the librarian licensure exam. Oh, and she routinely beats her bf at Tekken.



NOEL followed in his mother's footsteps and is now a librarian at an international research institute. Except she's more like Marian the Librarian, and he's more like, well... Conan the Librarian's younger brother.



JOL is an AV librarian at an exclusive high school for boys. She approves their friend requests on Facebook only after they graduate AND only if she's friends with them IRL.



PHILIP is the kind of school librarian in whose presence a teenage girl has pretended to faint and who, after he took her into his arms to get her some help, started shouting, "Ang bango ni sir!!!"



KAORI is half-Filipino, half-Japanese. She's a librarian at the oldest university in the Philippines, where she's been told that she's "too hot to be a librarian." QED.



CARLO, who works at a local development bank, has been told he looks like K-drama star Lee Min Ho. But he does not take such comments seriously. He just strikes a pose and lets them decide. (Ok, I made up the last part.)



TIN is a hot mama who's employed as a librarian in Qatar. Her husband objected to posting her smoking hot pics, and that's why all you'll see here are the husband-approved pics above.



TROY is a storyteller who loves kids so much that once in a while he dresses up as HENERAL BASA at his public library and elsewhere. He makes reading fun... and that's hot!

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Outstanding Librarian 2017:
Mila Medina Ramos



Mila Medina Ramos

The Professional Regulation Commission conferred the Outstanding Professional Librarian of the Year Award on Mila Medina Ramos on 23 June 2017. The citation reads:
For her distinguished contribution in the field of librarianship as demonstrated by her exemplary service to her profession through sharing of her expertise as resource speaker in local and international fora and providing free on-the-job training to local and foreign librarians; for her strong commitment and professionalism having served as member of the Board for Librarians and conducting reviews for takers of the Librarians Licensure Examination; for promoting the library profession through her book, essays and lectures and updating of Philippine Standards for Special Libraries; for her participation in national committees for framing cataloguing standards and librarians' competencies;

For steering the International Rice Research library into one of the model libraries in the Philippines and for pioneering the creation of PhilAgriNet, and assuming a major role in the formation of the CGIAR Libraries and Information Services Consortium; for heading the ALAP as its President who engineered IRRI's membership in the Agricultural Networks Information Collaborative (AgNIC) and took the initiative in conducting librarian-related research;

For her competence, excellence, and commendable track record that earned for her various awards and recognition, such as the Outsanding Librarian Award (ALAP, 2005), Outstanding Academic/Research Librarian Award 2005 (PAARL, 2006), CGIAR Science Award (CGIAR, 2006), PLAI-STRLC Most Distinguished Librarian Award (2009) that served as a testament to her outstanding career.

Thanks to Rene Manlangit for the citation and photo.


Category: Librarians—Awardees

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Marianita D. Dablio — Filipino Librarian


Congratulations to Dr. Marianita D. Dablio for her Distinguished Alumna Award from the University of the Philippines Library Science Alumni Association (UPLSAA)!

Below is the response she delivered at the awarding ceremony.


Response
Marianita D. Dablio
2 July 2016


Thank you, UPLSAA 2015-2016, for this Distinguished Alumna Award.

It is with great humility that I receive this award in behalf of the librarians, library staff, and LIS faculty with whom I have worked at the Mindanao State University and other institutions in Mindanao. I would like to thank the faculty of the Institute, now School, of Library and Information Studies, who impressed on me the solid groundings of a good librarian: Prof. Rosa Vallejo, Dr. Ursula Picache, Prof. Filomena Tann, Prof. Namnama Hidalgo, and Prof. Herminia Santos.

How did I become a Librarian? My “romance” with the field must have started when I worked as a student assistant at the Mindanao State University Library, while pursuing a degree in BS Elementary Education. A long, long overdue expression of gratitude goes to two Institute alumni, Benifredo Sta. Maria and Leticia Espinas Aquino, who paved the way in my becoming a librarian. How can I ever forget the “imposing” voices of these two figures, who persistently told us what a library should be? Sir Benny and Ma’am Letty insisted that I should study in what was then the UP Institute of Library Science.

I would like to believe that as SLIS alumni, we have to spread our wings and leave a lasting imprint. I ventured to start the MSU Department of Library Science (now Department of Library and Information Science) as a one-woman department. Now the department has three full-time faculty members who are at the forefront of producing quality LIS professionals in Mindanao. It is worth noting the department has developed a number of Muslim and Christian librarians in the region, and in the country, as well.

Years of library work have earned me a number of monickers: “the walking encyclopedia,” “the walking dictionary,” and “Dabliography.” I realized that this image has highlighted our vital role in sourcing, resourcing, and outsourcing information for our various publics. It is our knack for looking for alternative sources of information that have connected us to our users.

Our profession is reaching a critical turn. It has reached a point where at the service delivery, “I don’t know” is not possible as a reply anymore. I always remind my students that “ewan” is not an acceptable option in dealing with our patrons. Colleagues tell us what happens when the librarian says “ambot” (meaning “ewan” or I don’t know). Perhaps it is is time to develop our reference course as an engaging moment where our students can apply their psychology, sociology, and even politics of the information interaction. With all the Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, there is still no substitute for face-to-face communication.

One of the most unforgettable lessons of being a teacher is how students and library practitioners are “teaching” me instead of the other way around. One never misses to listen to their endless stories of “no support,” “walang budget,” “walang paki si Boss,” and maraming “nega” sa buhay librarian. The realities of the field resound that libraries are indeed resource-intensive institutions. Perhaps we can train them how to manage libraries amidst resource constraints. Indeed the challenge is how to teach our students to see beyond the box.

With so much information around us, I have advocated the responsive and responsible use of library and information sources. We have to develop strategies on how our library professionals can respond to the changes, yet be ethically responsible for the use of such resources. Let us develop our information literacy sessions—where our students are provided opportunities to relearn, retool, and rethink—to enable them to rediscover the world from inside out.

Indeed, this award is a very prestigious one. With UP’s SLIS taking the lead in LIS education, we its alumni are challenged to reflect on what can do for those at the peripheries. UP’s SLIS has been a guiding light in our pursuit for quality education in Mindanao. While we see the need for increasing the number of Muslim and Christian library professionals, we look forward to encouraging more of the indigenous peoples of Mindanao to become librarians. Perhaps only then can we claim that Filipino librarians are multicultural. The UPLSAA has been the beacon for our initiatives.

A librarian’s work is never done, even after retirement. I retired three years ago, but my retirement felt more like a back subject. I have returned to the readings and many other things I wanted to do before I retired. I also call this phase in my life as “in progress.” I have not finished sending my expression of gratitude to the many students I have interacted with, and to the colleagues who supported me all the way.

My response has been full of “we,” “us,” and “our” because in every aspect, I was not doing the job solo. So I share this award with my former administrators who, while setting high expectations, had confidence in my ability to deliver. I would also like to thank the many individuals who shared the true meaning of resourcefulness.

I would like to thank my family, who have been there ALWAYS, through thick and thin.

For the greatnesS of God’s love in his mercy and compassion.

For all of us, MAGANDANG BUHAY!


Reproduced with the author's permission.

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Librarians' Licensure Examination 2016: Results

Congratulations to the new librarians!

The passing rate for this year's Librarians' Licensure Examination (LLE) is 65 percent (738 out of 1,140), which is the highest-recorded passing rate since librarians began taking the LLE in 1993, and certainly higher than the 2015 passing rate of 47 percent.

The most important question is "Why?" Was the exam easier? Or are graduates getting better? It's hard to say for sure, but comparing the passing rates of the 2016 first timers (80 percent, or 622 of 780) and the 2015 first timers (70 percent, or 273 of 388), as well as the passing rates of the 2016 repeaters (32 percent, or 116 of 360) and the 2015 repeaters (22 percent, or 76 of 354), it's clear that the percentage of first timers and repeaters who passed the exam this year is consistently greater than the percentage of those who passed the exam last year.

While the change in exam schedule (i.e., from April last year to September this year) gave last year's graduates more time to study for this year's exam, the increase in passing rate for repeaters from 22 percent last year to 32 percent this year suggests that the 2016 exam was easier. There is a need to examine all previous passing rates for repeaters, but the passing rates for repeaters in 2013 and 2014 (22 percent and 15 percent, respectively) support my thesis that this year's exam was easier.

"Easier" in what sense? From what I've learned from previous and current members of the Board for Librarians, greater efforts have been exerted to ensure that test questions are easier to comprehend (though not necessarily making them easier to answer). From my own experience taking the exam in 2004, LLE questions can be rather difficult to comprehend, and examinees just have to make a guess regarding the answers to many questions. This can be rather disconcerting, especially to repeaters.

Anyway, while the University of the Philippines had a 100 percent passing rate (50 out of 50) and 4 of its examinees made it to the top 11, I think it's remarkable that 4 of the top scorers were from provincial schools, namely Holy Cross of Davao College, Baliuag University, University of Saint Louis-Tuguegarao, and Bicol College; with University of Santo Tomas taking the top spot, and examinees from University of the East and Philippine Normal University rounding out the list of topnotchers.

The list of the top scorers is reproduced below. The list of successful examinees may be downloaded from the official website of the Professional Regulation Commission.

Top 11
KARL EMMANUEL VILLANUEVA RUIZ 89.90
APRIL MAE BADILLA DELOLA 89.25
ELAINE BARBARA MAGLAQUE CRUZ 89.20
PAUL JASON VISAYA PEREZ 89.15
JONATHAN DE GUZMAN ISIP 88.85
ROANA MARIE LUCENA FLORES 88.85
GRACE RUTH TANTEO DAULAT 88.55
DANOLEENE MARIE PASICOLAN TUGADE 88.40
RAYMOND BALASAN AZUL 88.20
DENISE MARIE OCAMPO MACROHON 88.15
SHAUNTEL PEREZ ORTEGO 88.00

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Outstanding Librarian 2016:
Rodolfo Y. Tarlit

Rodolfo Y. Tarlit

The Professional Regulation Commission conferred the Outstanding Professional Librarian of the Year Award on Rodolfo Y. Tarlit on 22 June 2016. The citation reads:
For having sustained his dedication, competence and integrity, as a Professional Librarian, contributed in raising the level of competence of Filipino Librarians and the emergence of Librarianship as a profession from obscurity to vibrancy; for having been an outstanding library educator, most preferred resource person, lecturer and trainer in information analysis and organization of library materials; for a body of library literature he wrote/presented/compiled/edited, such as conference, seminar and workshop papers and proceedings, newsletters, articles and inspirational messages; for his indefatigable leadership as University Librarian of the University of the Philippines-Diliman, President of the University of the Philippines Library Science Alumni Association (UPSLAA), Philippine Association of Academic and Research Librarians (PAARL), Inc., Philippine Association of Teachers of Library and Information Science (PATLS) and Philippine Librarians Association, Inc. (PLAI); for having been recognized thru awards such as outstanding alumnus of the UPLSAA, Academic Librarian of the Year of PAARL, Professional Service Award of PATLS, Gabriel A. Bernardo Award, Severino I. Velasco Award, Service Award and Hall of Fame Award by PLAI, and Gawad Chancellor by the University of the Philippines-Diliman; and for his pioneering/trailblazing work as Convenor and Co-Chair of the National Committee on Resource Description and Access, which drafted the Policy and Guidelines on the Implementation of RDA in Philippine Libraries, as Chair of the National Committee that drafted the Guidelines on the Registration of Cultural Properties in Libraries, and as Member, Board of Trustees of the Martial Law Memorial Commission.

Thanks to Rene Manlangit for photo and to Elvira Lapuz for the citation.


Category: Librarians—Awardees

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FO: Rizaliana Online


I was invited to talk about "Rizaliana Online" at the Philippine Historical Association's National Conference on Teaching the Rizal Course. I don't have time to share what I said, but I did promise to share the links to the sites I mentioned.

Disclaimer: The inclusion of a website in the list below does not mean that I fully endorse the site and that there are no problems with its content or usability =)

Possible Sources for the Rizal Course

TV5 search: "jose rizal"
e.g., History | #pogiproblems ni Dr. Jose P. Rizal Part (1/3)

ABS-CBN News search: "jose rizal"
e.g., ABS-CBN's Bayani - Jose Rizal: "Sa Aking Mga Kababata"

GMA News and Public Affairs search: "jose rizal"
e.g., Pluma: Si Rizal, ang dakilang manunulat

JoseRizal.ph
Rizal-Blumentritt Friendship
Virtual Travels of Rizal

HathiTrust
e.g., Data papers: International Congress on Rizal (1961)

National Library of the Philippines: Digital Collections
Rizaliana: Manuscripts, Books and other Monographs
e.g., Noli Me Tangere (1887)

The United States and its Territories
e.g., El Filibusterismo (1900)

José Rizal, obras, en lenguas originales
e.g., Noli Me Tangere (1961) (pdf)

Internet Archive
e.g., Sucesos de las islas Filipinas (Morga, 1609),
Sucesos de las islas Filipinas (Rizal, 1890)

Biblioteca Digital Hispanica
e.g., Sucesos de las Islas Filipinas (Retana, 1909)

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Buwan ng Wika 2015


August is Buwan ng Wika (Language Month). This year's theme is "Filipino: Wika ng Pambansang Kaunlaran" (Filipino: Language of National Development). See the banner and calendar of activities below.

But perhaps the most interesting development—for me, anyway—is that Philippine Panorama has devoted most of its latest issue (2 August 2015) to a discussion of different aspects of the national language... in English! It's also interesting to note that while I've seen photos of the cover (see above) on social media, I haven't seen any links to the ePaper, PDF, or any of the articles. So, as a public service, here are the links to the articles:
Language for pleasure, not pressure (Editorial)
Why Filipino is "Filipino" by Virgilio Almario
What about Filipino? by Efren Abueg
New wave by Jacky Lynne A. Oiga
Don’t wince at the smell of rotten fish by AA Patawaran
Who says LIRA Stands for Literatura ni Rio Alma? by Vim Nadera


Click image for more information.


Click image to enlarge.

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Top 5 Free Sources for Filipiniana Online (Books)


"Online research" is supposed to be what lazy students do. Scholars, meanwhile, are expected to travel to different libraries, archives, and museums to consult documents, photographs, and books. This, however, is not necessarily true anymore because more and more resources are becoming available online. In some cases, surfing the web is not only less expensive, but also more productive because researchers can examine texts more closely and are not limited by policies regarding physical access to the materials. Plus, if your university library is closed, but you just need to check one small detail, online research is the most convenient alternative.

The 5 websites enumerated below in alphabetical order are, in my opinion, the best free sources for Filipiniana online at this time. They each have their own strengths and weaknesses, and you'll have to search them all if you want to make sure that a particular title is really not available on any of them, but what's really good about these sites, is that unlike others that only reproduce the texts, you can see for yourself how the text originally appeared on the page, you can cite specific page numbers as if you had the book in front of you, and you can even download the entire book or certain pages (with one exception, which is indicated below).

If you have any suggestions, please send a message or leave a comment via Facebook.


Biblioteca Digital Hispanica (Hispanic Digital Library)
This site is, of course, in Spanish, so if you can't read Spanish, make sure you click on "Welcome" (other languages aside from English are also available) at the top-right corner of the page. Once you're looking at the book, you can download the entire book by clicking on the disk icon on the upper-left corner of the page, next to the book's title. Some of the books available are:
La música popular de Filipinas (Walls, 1892)
Archivo del bibliófilo filipino (Retana, 5 vols., 1895-1905)
Mga tala ng aking buhay at mga ulat ng Katipunan (de Jesus, 1932)

HathiTrust Digital Library
This website was very helpful when I was doing my PhD because it was the only one then that had such a huge collection of downloadable books on the Philippines. Note, however, that many titles are not accessible to all. You'll have to select "Full view only" to limit your search to the ones that are freely available. Also, if you see that a book is downloadable today, don't assume that it will be downloadable tomorrow. So it's probably best if you download a title when you see it. Some of the books I've downloaded in the past are:
The Philippine Islands (Blair and Robertson, 55 vols., 1903-1909)
A history of the Philippines (Barrows, 1905)
A short history of the Philippines (Jernegan, 1905)

Internet Archive
This site doesn't only host the Wayback Machine, it also provides access to a lot of books digitized by different libraries around the world. What's good about it is that you can actually turn the pages by clicking on the left or right pages. Some of the books available are:
Arte de la lengua tagala (Totanes, 1745)
The medicinal plants of the Philippines (Pardo de Tavera, 1901)
Census of the Philippine Islands (1918)
Vols. I | II | III | IV.1 | IV.2 | Appendix to Vol. I

UC Press E-Books Collection, 1982-2004
This site is the only one that provides access to books that are still copyrighted. Not all books, however, are accessible, so you'll have to choose "public access books" to limit your search to the ones that are freely available. Note that books or pages cannot be downloaded, but page numbers are indicated at the end of every "page." Some of the books available are:
Unequal alliance: the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, and the Philippines (Broad, 1988)
Sugar and the origins of modern Philippine society
(Larkin, 1993)
Muslim rulers and rebels: everyday politics and armed separatism in the southern Philippines (McKenna, 1998)

The United States and its Territories: 1870-1925 (USIT)
I've called this site "the best and largest online collection of Filipiniana materials available for free" before, and in some ways, it is still the best because while its name suggests a larger geographic reach, it is the only one on this list that is almost exclusively made up of Filipiniana. And while most, if not all, its titles also appear in Hathitrust, some titles can only be downloaded on USIT. One big difficulty with this site, however, is that you cannot download entire books. You can only download one page at a time. Some of the books available are:
La imprenta en Filipinas: adiciones y observaciones á la Imprenta en Manila de D. J. T. Medina (Retana, 1899)
FO: Reports of the Governors General (1900-1915)
A review of the identifications of the species described in Blanco's Flora de Filipinas (Merrill, 1905)

Other sites you can check are: Biblioteca Virtual Miguel de Cervantes, Digital Public Library of America, Google Books, and Project Gutenberg.

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