Outstanding educator



       Dr. Concepcion A. Aguila was an outstanding educator.

         Born in San Jose, Batangas on September 11, 1894 to Pedro Aguila y Reyes and Paula Aguila y Andal, she finished her elementary grades at a public school in Batangas.  In 1912, she became a kindergarten teacher at the Centro Escolar de Senoritas and, in 1916, completed her secondary course. In 1924, she earned her bachelor of laws degree from the Philippine Law School, passing the bar examinations in the same year, and her master of laws degree in 1926 from Centro Escolar University. It was also at CEU that she obtained her Master of Arts degree, in 1937. In 1948, at Georgetown University in Washington,.  D.C., she became the first woman to graduate with a doctoral degree.

         Dr. Aguila was a gifted scholar. At CEU, she rose from the ranks, “from classroom teacher… to principal and supervisor” and, later, to executive director, consultant, and dean of the graduate school.

         After being admitted to law practice by the Supreme Court of the United States on March 5, 1946, she was appointed by President Roxas as member of the National Council of Education. This was in 1947. The following year, President Quirino appointed her as member of the National Commission on Educational, Scientific and Cultural Matters.

         Between 1952 and 1955, she was president of the United Nations Association of the Philippines and of the Philippine Association of University Women; general chairman of the preparatory committee of the UN Regional Conference for Non-Governmental Organizations; conference chairman of the UN Regional Conference for Non-Governmental Organization on UN Information; vice-chairman of the first regional meeting of the International Federation of University Women; and vice-president of the board of directors of the National Federal of Women’s Club of the Philippines.

         Dr. Aguila wrote the following published articles and studies: “Educational Objectives and Policies of the United States Federal Government” (Ph. D. dissertation), “Human Values: Their Ethical Basis and Implications in Citizenship Education and in the Organization of Work,” “Teacher’s Role in Functional Democracy,” “American Diplomacy in the Far East,” “A Comprehensive Study of the Political Theories of Hobbes and Locke,” “ Sphere of International Politics,” “International Cooperation of the Americas,” “International Exchange of Persons Program,” “ UNESCO  in the Philippines,” “ United Nations Organization and the UNESCO Education Program” and  “Marxist Socialistic Philosophy.” She also authored a book, Educational Legislation, published in 1956.

         She represented the Philippines at the 1937 Convention of the World Federation of Educational Associations in Tokyo, Japan; 1947 Convention of the General Federation of Women’s Club in New York; the 1947 Conference of the International Federation of University Women in Toronto, Canada; 1947 International Goodwill Tour and Forum Discussions in Havana, Cuba, sponsored by the General Federation of Women’s Club in America; 1953 International Federation of the University Women Conference in London; and the 1953 Centennial Celebration of the University of Salamanca and the Congress of Ibero-American Universities in Madrid.

         A recipient of various honors and awards, Dr. Aguila was listed in the Biography of Educators in 1950 and in the Who Is Who In American Education in 1952. She was featured in the Philippines Herald as “outstanding educator” by the Department of Education in December 1956.

         In 1947, CEU voted her as its most distinguished alumna. The Philippine Law School gave her the same recognition in 1955. The Federation of University Women of Australia as well as of New Zealand awarded her a travel grant and invited her as guest speaker in their national conferences in January 1956 in Sydney, Australia and Auckland, New Zealand.

         She died of cancer on December 16, 1958. In her honor, the city government of Manila renamed Tuberias Street near Malacanang Palace as “Conception A. Aguila Street.”




Espina, Richelle  B.