The University of the Philippines Department of Social Sciences (UPM DSS) is calling out a certain person named Kathleen Joy R. Poblete for using fake academic credentials during a graduation speech for Ramona S. Tirona Memorial School in Dasmariñas, Cavite held last July 15.
During the said virtual event, Poblete was introduced as someone who spent her first two years in college taking up BA Political Science in Cavite State University before finishing the next two years at the University of the Philippines Manila.
Poblete claimed to finish her tertiary education as a summa cum laude with an average grade of 1.015. She also claimed earning a “best in research” and “juris doctor” award. She was then introduced as someone currently enrolled at the UP Manila College of Law. The school has taken down the official recording of the said event.
In a statement, the department strongly denied that Poblete has any affiliation with it. Citing UP’s Office of the University Registrar, the department also emphasized that there is no record whatsoever of her attending the University.
Alvin Campomanes, a faculty member of the department, explained that the teachers and school officials who are part of Ramona S. Tirona Memorial School’s graduation committee could have easily verified the information provided for Poblete. For instance, Campomanes pointed out in a Facebook post that UP Manila does not have a College of Law because it is in UP Diliman. He added that their department does not grant a “best in research” award.
Campomanes also discovered that Poblete went to great lengths just to “prove” her purported achievements like having fake graduation photos of her wearing “sablay” – the official academic costume of UP system. She also posted on her now-deactivated Facebook account a doctored screenshot of her virtual graduation as well as a forged email from UP commending her for passing a non-existent “advanced graduation exam” with a score of 97%.UPM DSS noted that the UP administration is already investigating the matter and that it is coordinating with all institutions involved, which will most likely involve the Department of Education-Dasmariñas City division office and the Cavite State University.
Maybe had Poblete exerted the same effort in preparing for the University of the Philippines College Admission Test, she wouldn’t have to do all these just to pretend that she’s from UP. Knowing that Poblete seems to have a high degree of familiarity with how things go in UP, it is possible that she has an accomplice who is a UP student in doing all these forgeries.
This should serve as a warning for schools to be more careful in examining the academic and professional credentials of people they invite for events like graduation and recognition ceremonies. It is actually very easy to examine credentials these days.
PS: The Filipino Scribe is willing to publish the side of Miss Poblete if she or anyone in her behalf wishes to do so.