Bill proposes dedicated seat for UP research staff in Board of Regents

Quezon City Representative Marvin Rillo has filed House Bill No. 7821, seeking to grant the research, extension, and professional staff (REPS) of the University of the Philippines (UP) their own seat in the university system’s governing Board of Regents (BOR).

“Our measure, once enacted, will make UP more democratic. It will ensure that every sector in the system enjoys a distinct voice and vote in the BOR,” Rillo said. “It will also further boost UP’s institutional research capabilities.”

Rillo, who serves as vice chairperson of the House committee on higher and technical education, represents the district where UP’s flagship campus in Diliman is located.

The proposed bill aims to amend Republic Act No. 9500, the UP Charter of 2008, by splitting the current shared seat of REPS and administrative staff into two distinct seats. This change would allow both REPS and administrative personnel to have their own sectoral representative, chosen by their respective groups.

Currently, the 12-member BOR is composed of the head of the Commission on Higher Education, the UP president, the heads of the Senate and House committees overseeing higher education, one regent each from alumni, faculty, students, REPS and administrative staff, three regents appointed by Malacañang, and the UP secretary.

The UP system comprises eight constituent universities across 20 campuses nationwide, accommodating 64,144 degree-seeking students and 2,757 basic education students.

The system employs 7,105 faculty members, 8,948 administrative staff, and 1,443 REPS. The system’s budget for 2024, as per the General Appropriations Law, is P24.8 billion, including P4.9 billion allocated for hospital services.

UP also operates the Philippine General Hospital in Manila and other healthcare facilities.

In addition to its existing campuses, UP has five new campuses under construction or in the final planning stages: Vista City campus in Alabang, Muntinlupa City; UP Visayas extension campus in Barangay Sta. Elena, Tacloban City; New Clark City campus in Capas, Tarlac; Panabo City campus in Davao del Norte; and UP Visayas extension campus in Pandan, Antique.