New FEU building ‘complete and ready for use’: Kilakiga

FEU Advocate
January 19, 2021 04:25

By Janna Mae E. Bobier

The new building within Far Eastern University (FEU) Manila campus, which will officially be called FEU Transformative University Resource Center (FEUTURE Center), is new normal-ready after its construction was completed late last year.

Situated along Lerma Street, the construction of the new building started last 2018 and in a previous report of FEU Advocate, it was initially set to finish within the first quarter of 2020. 

However, the project encountered some delays caused by operation restrictions during the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) period last March 2020 to curb the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in the country.

Facilities and Technical Services (FTS) Vice President Engineer Edward Kilakiga told FEU Advocate that the construction status of the building is now "essentially completed and is ready for use when face-to-face classes resume."

Kilakiga added that FEUTURE Center features innovative and sustainable multi-purpose facilities that are designed to suit the envisioned academic initiatives of the University.

“It is designed to address the special needs of academic initiatives, such as what is envisioned for some [general education] Gen-Ed subjects where plenary lectures with breakout sections will give students the benefits of both expert perspective and close attention by the section teacher,” he shared.

Aside from this, Kilakiga assured that the new building is prepared to accommodate students once the national government allows the resumption of face-to-face classes.

“We will abide by the government's mandate. To meet the COVID-19 safety protocols, we will reduce classroom capacity [by half]; partially open windows for fresh air; designate [one-way] foot-traffic lanes on stairways, hallways, and the lobby; set up thermal scanners at entry points; and provide accessible hand washing stations,” he said.

As of writing, there is still no specific date for the official inauguration of the newly completed building. It will be launched in time for the resumption of face-to-face classes.

While President Rodrigo Duterte stands by his position that there will be no physical classes until a COVID-19 vaccine is available, Commission on Higher Education (CHEd) has reportedly been working with several institutions to prepare for limited in-campus classes for health-related programs—including courses that require actual applications and are difficult to be done remotely.

CHEd Chairman J. Prospero De Vera III also clarified that it will be “an option,” not a requirement for all higher education institutions (HEIs). 

The Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases has yet to issue an approval for limited in-person classes in tertiary level, according to De Vera.

(EDITOR'S NOTE: All photographs above were taken last February 2, 2020 during the official visit of FEU Advocate inside the building)