Notre Dame University, Cotabato City

Notre Dame University is a Catholic institution in Cotabato City run by the Oblates of Mary Immaculate[1] and it has been a member of the Notre Dame Educational Association, a group of Notre Dame Schools in the Philippines under the patronage of the Blessed Virgin Mary.


The Congregation of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate (OMI) first came to the Philippines on September 25, 1939, and immediately went about their work of evangelization in the then Empire Province of Cotabato and the islands of Sulu and Tawi-Tawi, endeavoring to win friends among Christians and Muslims.

In 1948, the Oblates established the Notre Dame College as the first college founded in Cotabato City and the entire province. Fr. Robert E. Sullivan was its first Rector and Dean. When it opened, there were only 128 students and a pioneering faculty of eight, with classes being held at the Notre Dame of Cotabato Girls Department building. In 1949, the Notre Dame College acquired its own building.

In 1953, the college received full government recognition for its course offerings in Liberal Arts, Commerce and Education. In the same year, the College of Law started offering first year law subjects. Complete elementary education was offered later with the establishment of the Notre Dame Training Department, envisioned to be a teaching laboratory for Education students majoring in Elementary Education.

With the increase in enrollment, the administration saw the need of finding a new school site. On February 27, 1959, the cornerstone-laying and blessing of the present University site was held with no less than the Very Rev. Leo Deschatelets, OMI, Superior General of the Oblates, presiding over the ceremony.

In an order signed by then Secretary of Education Onofre Corpuz, the Notre Dame College was elevated to University status on March 11, 1969 . The Notre Dame University was formally inaugurated on September 9, 1969, highlighted by the investiture of the Very Rev. Joseph Milford, OMI as the first University President.

The decade of the 70's brought about significant changes in the life of the University. From a struggling small college in 1948, it metamorphosed into a University in twenty-one years of its existence. One significant change was the assumption of the first Filipino President, the Rev. Fr. Orlando Quevedo, OMI (now Archbishop of Cotabato).

In 1974, NDU opened its Nursing College that was approved by the Bureau of Private Schools. In June 1975, the College of Commerce offered two new courses: Management and Financial Management. In November 1975, three new graduate courses were offered: Master of Arts in Education major in Elementary School Management/Secondary School Management; and Master of Arts in Guidance.

In 1980, The Philippine Association of Schools, Colleges and Universities (PAASCU) certified the Level I accreditation of the three colleges of the University, the College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Commerce and the Teachers' College.

In the same year, the Core Curriculum was introduced integrating both Christian and Islamic Values in all core subjects taken by the students.

In 1983, a program towards a doctoral degree in the field of Education, major in Peace and Development Education was introduced.

In April 1984, four Colleges earned PAASCU re-accreditation. These were the College of Arts and Sciences, Teachers' College, College of Commerce, which were reaccredited for Level II and the College of Engineering, which was given accreditation for Level I.[citation needed]

The College of Arts & Sciences, College of Education and the College of Business & Accountancy earned the PAASCU Level III Accreditation in 1992.[citation needed]

In school year 1997-98, the University, in cooperation with the Mindanao Advanced Education Project (MAEP) of the Commission on Higher Education, offered a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Peace and Development Education and Master of Arts (M.A.) in Peace and Development Education.

In 2001, NDU was afforded a deregulated status by the Commission on Higher Education. Hence, NDU enjoys the following benefits: Issuance of Special Order, Deregulated Monitoring/ Evaluation of CHED, Access to Subsidies/ Assistance, Curricular Prescriptions, and Conferring Honoris Causa.

Faced with challenges of the times in this part of Southern Philippines, Notre Dame University aims to be an educational institution for peace and development in Region XII, and the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao. The University has then aligned all its formation, academic, research and extension program goals and plans with such direction for peace and development.[clarification needed]

The different curricular programs offered by the Colleges of Education, Arts and Sciences, Business and Accountancy, Engineering, Health Sciences and Law, and the Graduate School have maintained the integration of values and peace education.[clarification needed]

At present, NDU has a student population of 4,949. As a summary, NDU has 33 administrators, 183 fulltime faculty members, 40 part-time faculty members and 110 non-teaching personnel, or a total of 369 personnel[citation needed]


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