/ 27 January 2024

THE University of Santo Tomas held the groundbreaking ceremony for its Dr. William T. Belo Interdisciplinary Research Institute in Sta. Rosa, Laguna on Friday.

UST Rector Rev. Fr. Richard Ang said that the edifice symbolizes the continued fulfillment of the university’s hope and dreams in the city.

This, he said, complements two of goals —enrichment of research ecosystem and synergy among disciplines.

“Interdisciplinary approach is valuable since it takes into account diverse perspectives to solve complex problems. No one discipline has the monopoly of all solutions and answers. We will have to all work together,” Ang said.

The research institute aims to cultivate creativity and skills among Thomasian researchers, fostering efficient resource use.

It will be a collaborative hub driving breakthroughs across six interdisciplinary areas to shape society such as food, security, and safety; health and well-being; energy; environmental sustainability; information and communications; and materials and product innovation.

“Named after the Wilcon Depot Founder who generously donated for the construction of the edifice, UST-WitBIRIn is the first of the three important institutes that will comprise the UST Sta. Rosa Research Complex (UST StaRRCo),” the school said.

Meanwhile, Ang pledged to the local government of Sta. Rosa that the edifice stands as a beacon of change, envisioned to propel the city towards becoming the “Smartest City” in Luzon.

Vice-Rector for Research and Innovation Rev. Fr. Jannel N. Abogado added that UST-WitBIRIn will aid the university in its mission “to make an impact to people’s lives and society more efficiently through its research and innovation goals.”