Trivia about the Central Philippine University
Central Philippine University is a non-stock, non-profit Christian institution of higher learning, where a well-rounded program of education is offered under influences that strengthen faith and build up character. It was founded in 1905 as the Jaro Industrial School by missionaries of the American Baptist Foreign Mission Society. It started as an elementary vocational school for poor boys who worked for their board and tuition. Dr. William O.Valentine, the first principal, worked hard to have the school incorporated and recognized by the government. His goals were reached in 1913, the year when the school began to admit female students also. In 1915, the first two years of high school were opened. In 1920, the third and fourth year classes were added and the following year the first batch of high school graduates were produced. To satisfy the growing desire of young people for education, a junior college was opened in 1923 and the name of the school was changed to Central Philippine College. The senior college was established in 1936 and by 1940, five degrees were offered: Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Education, Bachelor of Theology and Bachelor of Religious Education.
World War II broke out and with it, came destruction and death. Eleven (11) American missionaries were massacred by the Japanese soldiers. Central students, faculty and staff members and alumni joined the guerrilla movement or the Civil Resistance Government. April 1, 1953, was an important landmark in the whole CPU story. On that day, the ardent dream of thousands of alumni and the long line of American and Filipino pioneers became a reality: Central Philippine College gained university status and became Central Philippine University.
From the founding of the school, Filipinos were gradually given larger responsibilities in its administration. In 1966, the first Filipino president. Dr. Rex D. Drilon, was elected; and in 1968 the entire university property – land, buildings and equipment – was turned over by the American Baptist Foreign Mission Society to the Filipino Corporation of CPU. Since 1973, all members of the Board of Trustees and administrative officials of the University have been Filipinos.
In 100 years, CPU has grown from an elementary vocational school with 20 pupils to a widely known university with an enrollment of over 12,000. The 24-hectare campus, which was originally chosen for its quiet and relative isolation and pervaded by a Christian atmosphere known as the “Central Spirit”, is now a veritable community by itself, with more than 46 buildings used for classrooms and support facilities. In 2001, it was declared as a Tourism Site by the lloilo City Council.
Today, CPU holds the distinction as No. 1 in the Philippines in the number of tertiary academic programs accredited Level III by the Federation of Accrediting Agencies of the Philippines. It was also granted Autonomy by the Commission on Higher Education for the overall performance of its graduates in the government licensure examinations (No.1 in Region Viand No. 5 in the country), for having established Centers of Development, and for its consistent delivery of quality education, research and extension work. Just last year, it was awarded the ISO 9001:2000 Certification for its educational and support services.