July 14, 2022

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LRT-1 operator, Ateneo tie up to offer courses in railway engineering

LIGHT RAIL Manila Corp. (LRMC), the private operator of Light Rail Transit Line 1 (LRT-1), said on Thursday that it will collaborate with the Ateneo de Manila University on designing courses that it hopes will generate more railway workers.

“Under the intended arrangement, LRMC is working with ADMU in designing railway engineering courses and programs,” the company said in an e-mailed statement.

Ongoing railway projects include the LRT-1 Cavite Extension, the Manila Metro Rail Transit System-7, the Metro Manila Subway, the North-South Commuter Railway, and the Mindanao Railway. 

“We live in an exciting time for our railway sector, with several infrastructure projects taking shape and more sustainable modes of transport being pushed,” according to LRMC President and Chief Executive Officer Juan F. Alfonso, who is also a member of the advisory board of the Ateneo Research Institute of Science and Engineering.

There is a need to support the “growing need for highly-skilled, competent, and world-class rail workforce as the country develops further the local railway industry,” the company said.

Ateneo is working on preparing courses in Transportation and Society, Principles of Railway Transportation, and Railway Management and Engineering.

The first course is a general course on transportation that will be an interdisciplinary elective, the company said.

“The second course a technical interdisciplinary course intended for students with majors under the Department of Electronics, Computer, and Communications Engineering, while the third course, a major elective, will be open to all Computer Engineering students taking the railway engineering track and to all students taking the minor program in railway engineering,” it added.

LRT-1 will serve as Ateneo students’ laboratory for their five-month internship program.

Students will be exposed to railway maintenance and construction management, project management, and working in a corporate setup, LRMC said.

The company noted that it is also discussing with the university how railway innovation and technology can be the subject of research projects to be undertaken by students or faculty.

LRMC is a joint venture of Ayala Corp., Metro Pacific Light Rail Corp. and Macquarie Infrastructure Holdings (Philippines) Pte. Ltd.

Metro Pacific Investments Corp. is one of three Philippine subsidiaries of Hong Kong’s First Pacific Co. Ltd., the others being PLDT, Inc. and Philex Mining Corp. Hastings Holdings, Inc., a unit of PLDT Beneficial Trust Fund subsidiary MediaQuest Holdings, Inc., maintains interest in BusinessWorld through the Philippine Star Group, which it controls. — Arjay L. Balinbin