Porta Coeli Center for Continuing Education. . . School for Our Marginalized Brethren
Porta Coeli Center for Continuing Education is non-traditional educational institute which gives people the opportunity to earn a college degree through distance education system. It delivers through the principle of education, leadership and integrity.
The institute considers its priority target the men and women for one reason or another missed the opportunity to earn their college degree during their younger years but the passion of learning still burns in them or through the years have realized the value of earning a degree to widen their options in life. Family men and women who can no longer attend traditional classroom settings for learning without affecting their work schedules and income potentials. These are the OFWs, factory workers, kasambahay and those who can’t get college education because of financial constraint. The institute gives the same opportunities to our Indigenous People like the Dumagats and the religious men and women, seminarians as well as other pastoral workers aiming to earn their college degrees without leaving their monasteries, abandoning their apostolates or work commitments.
Tools for learning are through modules or study kits, research and the use of internet system.
Porta Coeli was conceptualized in the year 2000 by few religious leaders and personalities from SAIDI. They conducted series of brainstorming sessions and consultative meetings. The result of their hard work was Porta Coeli Center for Continuing Education, an institution that would give a chance to those who want to continue their college studies through distance education or home study program.
In 2006, the program was offered to our OFWs in Hong Kong who have worked hard to support their families, send their children and other relatives to schools but have forgotten that they too need college education to have better options than serving as domestic helpers in foreign lands.
The program was also given to the religious sisters of Poor Clare who have not finished their college education. The courses offered were Bachelor of Science in Business Management and Bachelor of Science in Religious Studies.
In 2010, the Dumagats of San Ysiro Antipolo was also given the same opportunities. From then on, staff and volunteers of Porta Coeli have trekked the mountains of Montalban, Banahaw, visited the provinces along Laguna Lake to promote the value of earning a college degree.
General Profile of the Students
In partnership with Carmelite College, Porta Coeli was able to offer the program in Lipa City and Muntinlupa. Canossa Academy supports the program through providing venue for the monthly meetings of the students and allowing Ms. Noemi G. Estrella to help Porta Coeli as coordinator.
Age Range 19 – 50 yrs old
Civil Status married, separated
Occupation mostly city hall and supermarket employees, school utility staff,
housewives and singe parents
Course: BS Entrepreneurship 24
AB Religious Education 8
Most of the students are breadwinners or helping their families augment their family income. They have been city hall employees for several years but until now they are still considered casual. One student is a mother of 10 children, her husband is in prison charged as drug pusher. Students from programs that are on hold like Antipolo, Montalban, Talim Island and Banahaw belong to the marginalized sectors of our society.
The institute wants to give college education to more people in order to give them wider options in uplifting the economic and social status of their families. We hope and pray that more kind hearted people will help the institute achieve its mission.