Zamboanga Medical School Foundation, Philippines

The Ateneo de Zamboanga University  is a Catholic and Jesuit university in Western Mindanao. AdZU began in 1912 as Escuela Catolica, a parochial school run by Spanish Jesuits. It is the second oldest Jesuit school in the Philippines and the second Jesuit school to be named Ateneo. It initially offered primary and secondary education for boys. It became a college in 1952 and a university in August 2001. It operates on two campuses, La Purisima Street with the tertiary and senior high school divisions and Barangay Tumaga, outside Zamboanga Cityproper, with the junior high school and grade school divisions.

AdZU operates two campuses. The main campus (4.3 hectares) on La Purisima Street, named for Fr. Eusebio Salvador, S.J., houses the undergraduate and graduate schools and the senior high school. The new campus (8.3 hectares) in Barangay Tumaga, which is outside Zamboanga City proper, named for Fr. William Kreutz, S.J., is home to the junior high school and grade school.

The name Ateneo is the Spanish form of Athenæum, which the Dictionary of Classical Antiquities defines as the name of “the first educational institution in Rome” where “rhetoricians and poets held their recitations.” Hadrian’s school drew its name from a Greek temple dedicated to Athena, the goddess of wisdom. The said temple, according to the Encyclopædia Britannica, was where “poets and men of learning were accustomed to meet and read their productions.” Athenæum is also used in reference to schools and literary clubs. The closest English translation is academy, referring to institutions of secondary learning.

The Society of Jesus has established 16 schools all over the Philippines since 1590 and named nine of them Ateneo. Ateneo de Zamboanga was the second school named Ateneo in 1916. Over the years, the name “Ateneo” has been recognized as the official title of Jesuit institutions of higher learning in the Philippines and synonymous with academic excellence.

The college varsity teams, men and women, compete in the Private Schools Athletic Association (PRISAA), and the grade school and high school varsity teams, boys and girls, participate in the Private Schools of Zamboanga City Athletic Association (PSZCAA).

AdZU holds a school-wide annual sportsfest called “Ateneo Fiesta,” a week-long event beginning in the last week of November. Most competitors, high school and college, are varsity athletes preparing for competition in sports events on the PRISAA agenda.

After receiving a five-year Level III Accreditation for the Arts and Sciences, Education, Business and Accountancy, and Nursing programs in May 2014, AdZU requested Institutional Accreditation, an evaluation process that looks at the overall quality of the school. On September 2014, the Philippine Accrediting Association of Schools, Colleges and Universities (PAASCU) granted Institutional Accreditation to Ateneo de Zamboanga.

The University has also been declared by the Commission on Higher Education as a Center of Excellence (CoE) in Teacher Education and a Center of Development (CoD) in Information Technology.

On May 2017, the Junior High School was conferred a Level III accreditation status from PAASCU accreditors.

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