NOTE: “Leadership Reflections” shares views of the different members of the University Leadership Council on matters related to campus life and the operations of the University. As well, it features opinions on issues of national and/or international relevance.
Teaching as a Passion
By Dr. Betsy Joy B. Tan, Vice President for Academic Affairs
(Message delivered during the 2012 Faculty & Staff Recognition Day)
After Amy Winehouse, and within a few months of each other, the world has just lost another entertainment icon in Whitney Houston, the voice that put to the top of the popularity charts the song meant for love, … for Valentine's Day today, “The Greatest Love of All”. In one comment about her death, someone from Las Vegas, Nevada, wrote: If entertainers were paid 20 bucks an hour, and scientists and engineers were paid millions instead, our world would be a better world!
Indeed, the world has turned into a world with misplaced values: where entertainment is more important than instruction and learning; where EQ pulls more weight in the scheme of things than IQ.
Silliman University's tradition of honoring our fellow teachers for years of selfless service is then not only a most welcome relief from the many national and global issues due to decisions where the clash between EQ and IQ is most prominent; but also, today's Silliman tradition for faculty recognition is a refreshing respite for the greatest love of all that knowledge work can bring to the kind of service that teaching can make of us and for us – and our students with us, too!
Faculty and Staff Recognition Day – where, because we have just experienced the effects of climate change, I am sure that not one of us will exchange the millions for entertainers for the pittance of scientists, engineers, and other knowledge work professionals. Instead, I am assured that with everyone pooling knowledge and ideas together, we can lift our province and our countrymen from the pits of many individual knowledge gaps that have contributed to the collective formation of habits and attitudes that have given our world this environmental catastrophe.
From the Silliman classroom to the world, welcome all to this tradition of recognizing the value of knowledge where knowledge recognition is due – the love for teaching and learning over entertainment and self-promotion!