Dr. Emiliano Hudtohan

Educator, Business Writer, Industry Expert and Entrepreneur

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Manila Standard Today

Dr. Emiliano T. Hudtohan

July 29, 2013

Creative fidelity, which globally propelled the De La Salle institutions to the 21st century, was engineered by Br. John Johnston, FSC during his term as super general.  I shared this concept with San Juan de Dios Educational Foundation, Inc. (SJDDEFI) and the Philippine Women’s University, as matter of divine providence and in obedience to the law of attraction.

On July 12, 2013, I was at San Juan de Dios Educational Foundation, Inc. with my spouse, Pearl, a former SJDEFI faculty and MBA student Marc Co. to address the issue of sustainability. It was recruitment officer Val Alejandro who sensed that “It’s not business as usual” at San Juan de Dios.

Marketing Feedforward

Pearl’s visit was an act of gratitude to San Juan de Dios. She was there from 2003 – 2009 Pearl with Dr. Chona Hernandez, Caroline Hizon, Apple Reynoso, Jeanne Aberion, Dr. Trix Ponsaran and Dr. Erick Laya..  During that period she had her most rewarding experience teaching English to nursing students, who ran up to as many as 10 sections of freshmen.

With the decline in nursing enrolment and a foreseeable 2 year hiatus of incoming freshmen due to K 12, Pearl endorsed Marc Co to rally the school community for student  recruitment. Marc offered technology to market San Juan de Dios in cyber space. He said that today 54 per cent of  netizens are  young Filipinos (16 to 24 years of age) students and young professionals. They use the  internet  roughly 14 hours on mobile phones and smart phones in a week.  Technology, he said, can provide: 1. E-Learning and webinars; 2. Student online checking of grades and tuition fee balance; and 3. Advanced online enlistment of student subject requirements.

Mirroring creative fidelity

In the presence of academic affairs Vice President Sr.Myrha Merene, DC, values formateur Sr. Adelaida Ricarte, DC, and the San Juan de Dios community I related the 100-year experience of Philippine Lasallian creative fidelity.  The Daughters of Charity and De La Salle Brother are both religious orders with French founders, who lived in the 17th century. St. Louise de Marillac, D.C., (1591-1660) was the co-founder, with St. Vincent de Paul, of the Daughters of Charity and Jean-Baptiste de La Salle (1651-1719) was an  educational innovator and founder of the Brothers of the Christian Schools.  Both orders made their presence in the Philippines 100 years ago.

Br. Luke Johnson says that “creative fidelity it means that Fidelity is the attitude of trust [loyalty] extended through time [and] to be truly faithful, one must be creative. This is because the other, as free subject, always changes. Creative fidelity is the willingness to trust, be attentive to, and suffer with the other even as the other changes. It is a living process”

Disruptive fidelity

Can innovation be disruptive fidelity?  According to Clayton Christensen, disruptive innovation is “a process whereby a product or service takes root initially in simple applications at the bottom of a market and then relentlessly moves up the market; displaces established competitors.”

Today, there is  an opportunity for theological update.   According to O’Murchu theology ought to explore our search for meaning for we are spiritual beings with human experience. However, religions adopt theologies that profess the notion that we are mere humans with spiritual experience.

Badrinarayan Shankar Pawar suggests that spirituality happens in the workplace at the level of meaning in work, community at work, and positive organizational purpose and that individual spirituality is manifested in job satisfaction, job involvement, and organizational commitment.

The search for creative fidelity of Catholic schools requires a reflective exercise on their theological tradition and at the same time a decisive action to address their religious and spiritual relevance for all stakeholders.

Creative feedback

On July 16, 2013 the Philippine Women’s University honored their top board passer Glenda de Rama Relova, 9th placer Kate Kathleen Magno Santos,  the 30 other PWU social work graduates who passed the 2013 Philippine Regulatory Commission examination  and  1983 PRC 4th placer and 2013 PRC outstanding social work awardee Sr. Marivic Sta. Ana.

Two years ago, Dr. Nenita Cura, PWU dean of social work, also an outstanding social work awardee, and I developed a new curriculum for the doctoral program in social development. She readily adopted the creative fidelity framework in rationalizing the program for doctor of philosophy in social development.  It grounded the practicing social scientist to a 21st century philosophical and cosmological development perspective..

Creative cosmology

Dr. Cura’s cosmology drove her to challenge the faculty to conduct PRC review with “a sense of closure and resolve” to top the PRC exam. Thus, Annie Leyson, Alice Molina, Ester Galia, Joseph Lumanog, Nancy Pareno and Sr. Kit Legaste, DC offered an 8-day pro bono session. This is 21st century volunteerism and divine accounting at work. Her drive for excellence was made manifest in a dream where a beautiful lady appeared while she was attending mass at PWW chapel; the reassuring presence of the lady made her proclaim that PWU will top the exam. In faith, she and Dr. Rosylyn Arnigo, PSSW faculty, had a precognition of PWU’s historic feat.

According to Dr. Cura, President Francisco Benitez’ mandate for vertical articulation, the school of social work grounded the professors to a 21st century holistic paradigm for sustainable ”human and divine” development.

By the time the Tangco group partnered with PWU, Dr. Cura’s creative fidelity already re-established the relevance of the school of social work at the local off-campus learning clusters and at the Asean region, gaining foothold in Korea and Vietnam.


Creative fidelity requires a delicate balance of doing a retrospective exercise on one’s historical significance and at the same time acting upon current opportunities for sustainable growth.  Institutions like De La Salle University and San Juan de Dios are century old, and right behind is 94 year old PWU.  To be sustainable for the next 100 years, they must continue to be faithful to the ideals of their founders through creative fidelity.

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