Cadiz plans to establish city college for scholars

Student-applicants for the Cadiz City Education Assistance Program (CCEAP) during the distribution of application forms at Cadiz Arena in Cadiz City, Negros Occidental on February 17 and 18. (Photo courtesy of Bilis Cadiz)

By Glazyl Y. Masculino

BACOLOD CITY – The city government of Cadiz in Negros Occidental is planning to set up its own city college in the near future.

Mayor Salvador Escalante Jr. announced the initiative following a surge in student-applicants for the Cadiz City Education Assistance Program (CCEAP).

During the recent distribution of application forms at Cadiz Arena, more than 5,000 students applied for scholarships for the second semester of the 2023-2024 school year.

“The application was open to both returning and new scholars, as well as to walk-in college students, provided they are bona fide residents of Cadiz,” said Escalante.

He emphasized that the 23-year-old CCEAP is inclusive, catering not only to top-performing students but also to those with average academic records. “As long as the city government can afford it, we will not be selective,” he stated, clarifying that the city’s scholarship program is not just for the economically disadvantaged or the brightest college students.

The processing of applications will start this week, with the aim of announcing the results before the commencement of the next semester.

The city government dedicates P16 million per semester, totaling P32 million annually, solely to the CCEAP.

“With the yearly CCEAP allocation being more than sufficient to operate a city or community college, we are now finalizing the plan for this purpose,” Escalante added.

The CCEAP, a brainchild of Escalante from 23 years ago, draws inspiration from the life stories of famous business magnates like John Gokongwei, Lucio Tan, and Ramon Ang.

“Academically, these esteemed taipans were average students during their college days. Yet, they went on to excel in the business world,” the mayor reflected.

Hence, Escalante expressed his intent not to discriminate against students who may currently be achieving at an average level. “We welcome even the mediocre ones. Who knows? Some of these students from Cadiz may be average now, but they could become ‘the best’ in their chosen fields tomorrow,” he concluded.