The Early Years
In June 1933, Holy Angel Academy (HAA) opened its door to a modest group of 78 students in the Holy Rosary Parish Convent. It was initiated through the joint efforts of the late Don Juan D. Nepomuceno, a known philanthropist/prominent businessman and Fr. Pedro P. Santos, then parish priest of the town of Angeles and later Archbishop of Nueva Caceres. It’s primary purpose was to offer Catholic education in the secondary level, which the founder felt as the need of the community at that time. It was organized as a non-stock, non-profit corporation oriented toward service to the community.
The founders employed the able leadership of Ricardo V. Flores, an energetic educator from Pagsanjan, Laguna. Consequently, the Holy Angel Academy became the first Catholic coeducational high school run by laypersons with a first Friday devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. By 1940, HAA moved to the Main building from the Parish Convent.
When the war broke out, classes were suspended and resumed only in 1945. By 1947, the High School Department has attained government recognition.
In 1960, acceding to public request, the elementary department was opened. In 1961, the one- and two-year Secretarial courses were opened. To pave the way for further educational expansion, the two-year pre-engineering course was opened in 1962. In the ensuing years, this department was extended to offer complete courses in Civil, Electrical, Mechanical and Industrial Management Engineering.
From Academy to College
Considering what has been attained, in 1962 the school was permitted to become the Holy Angel College with Don Juan D. Nepomuceno as the first President.
Under his leadership and the able assistance of his son, Mr. Geromin G. Nepomuceno, the school experience a revitalized management that led to the adoption of the fiscal policy, which opened new possibilities for further growth and expansion. The dream of making the school more responsive to the need of the community in particular and the nation in general began to assume reality.
In 1965, the Graduate School of education was opened primarily to foster professional growth among teachers in the community. This was followed by the opening of the Vocational/
Technical Department that offered courses in Industrial Electricity, Refrigeration and Air-conditioning, Radio Electronics, Automotive Mechanics, and Machine Shop Practice. This department was established in response to the nation’s Manpower Development Program.
From College to University
Realizing the significance of the unprecedented growth of the College, the administration decided to aim for university status, which it attained on December 4, 1981. Engr. Mamerto G. Nepomuceno was installed as first university president March 8, 1982. On the same occasion, Archbishop Oscar V. Cruz of the Archdiocese of San Fernando proclaimed Holy Angel University a Catholic university. University enrolment peaked at 27,000 in SY 1983-1984.
On August 12, 1985, Sister Josefina G. Nepomuceno of the Congregation of Missionary Benedictine Sisters of Tutzing was installed as Second President of Holy Angel University. Under this new leadership, the professional dimension of the University was pursued with greater vigor and its Catholic character given greater and renewed emphasis. From 1985 to 1994, curricular offerings added were AB majors in Sociology and religious
Studies two year programs in Computer Science and theater Arts, Bachelor of Science in Accountancy, BSBA major in Small Business Management/ Entrepreneurship, BSED majors in Values Education, PE Health and Music and Library Science, BS in Electronics and Communications Engineering, and Associate courses in Computer Secretarial and Medical Secretarial. The Graduate School offerings were MA in Education major in College Teaching, English Teaching, Mathematics and Library Science, Master of Business Management.
The Center for Research and, Measurement, and Evaluation, the Institute of small-
Scale Industries and Enterprise Resources Center reflected the University’s thrust towards research and community service. After 33 years, the Grade School had its final graduation in April 1994 as a result of its phase-out.
Quest for Quality and Excellence
In April 1995, the programs in the college of Arts and Sciences, Business and Accountancy, Education, and Engineering attained FAAP second level (full) accreditation status through PAASCU. Thus, Holy Angel became the first and only university in Region 3 accredited by PAASCU.
In the same year, Sr. Josefina ended her 10-year term as president with Mrs. Bernadette M. Nepomuceno as successor. Her first year of administration saw reforms in structure as well as operations and new courses offerings: BSBA major in Hotel and Restaurant Management, BSSA in Computer Secretarial and Travel Management, and BS in Computer Science.
In 1997, the Laboratory Elementary School was established to meet the requirements of the College of Education for its teacher-training program.
On August 6, 1999, the programs in the four Colleges were reaccredited by PAASCU. The Electrical and Industrial Engineering programs were conferred Centers of Development Level II status by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED).
SY 2001-2002 saw the opening of new programs, namely Mater in Engineering Program, major in Electrical Engineering and Industrial Engineering, Doctor in Business Management, BSEd in Home Economics and BSEd in Computer Education followed through.
In August 2001, CHED listed the University as one of the top 52 tertiary educational institutions in the country effectively conferring on it a deregulated status.
For SY 2002-2003, the new offerings were AB Psychology, BS Computer Engineering, BS Information Technology, BS Information Technology, BS Information Management, and BSEd Physical Education with specialization in Golf Sports.
In 2002, the University also hosted the First International Conference on Kapampangan Studies and established the Juan D. Nepomuceno Center for Kapampangan Studies to preserve study and promote Kapampangan cultural and historical heritage.
In 2003, the University revisited its vision and mission. It focused on excellence, community linkages and promotion of local history and culture. It also rededicated its commitment to accessible quality education. Responding to popular demand, it offered Nursing, Architecture, Computer Engineering, Psychology, Sociology, Information Technology, and Library Science. It also initiated sweeping improvement in physical plant, namely Mamerto G. Nepomuceno Hall, Angel Buildings: St. Gabriel and St. Raphael, the Chapel of the Holy Guardian Angel, Café Juan, and JDN annex.
CHED further elevated the University to autonomous status thus acknowledging its academic leadership in Region III in 2003. in May 2005, PAASCU conferred the reaccredited status on the programs of the four colleges. Hospitality Management was given one year to prepare for its formal survey.
In December 2005, Accountancy, Arts and Sciences, Business Administration, Education, and Mechanical Engineering attained Level III accreditation making Holy Angel University one of the few schools that has attained this status. Electronics and Communications Engineering maintained its Level II reaccredited status.
In May 2006, PAASCU conferred Level I accredited status on the High School Program. The Graduate programs, namely Masters in Business Management and Master of Arts in education had the preliminary survey on September 1-2. In October, Hospitality Management achieved its Level I status.
On August 12, 2006, Dr. Arlyn S. Villanueva took the helm from Mrs. Nepomuceno in leading the University to its diamond jubilee in 2008. She vows to keep the founder’s dream aflame: Holy Angel University as the best higher education in Central Luzon anchored on the three E’s: Evangelization, Excellence, and Economy.
In the year 2007 alone, the Commission on Higher Education recognized the University as Center of Development in Information Technology on March 23 and Center of Development in Business Administration on December 7. Moreover, HAU ranked first among top performing schools with 26-50 examinees category in the May 2007 CPA Licensure Examination. Equally significant was the board performance of the first batch of Nursing examinees that recorded 63% passing rate compared to the national passing percentage of 48%.
The First Semester of the following school year registered the highest College enrolment statistics of 12,010 since SY 1985-1986 with the CBA and CON having the biggest enrolment. It was in August of the same semester when the Electronics & Communications Engineering program was conferred its Level III accreditation status by PAASCU.
The University merged the High School and College units thus, creating the University Guidance Office, University Sports Office, and University Discipline Office to systematize procedures and policies as well as share best practices on student services.
March 8, 2008 marked the opening of the Diamond Jubilee Year with the ground breaking rites for the University Chapel, the blessing of the San Francisco de Javier Building, and the gala opening of the University Theatre as the highlights. The implementation of a new enrolment system, CAMPUS++, the adoption of a new ID system for students and employees, the construction and refurbishment of various learning facilities and student centers also marked the celebration of the University’s 75th Founding Anniversary.
The University’s bid for international accreditation was realized when the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education (IACBE) conferred on the University on April 4, 2008, in Newport Beach, California, the Specialized Accreditation of the business and business-related programs of the College of Business & Accountancy. This recognition was the result of the preparation which started as early as SY 2005-2006.
On June 2, 2008, the University was conferred Center of Development in Teacher Education. In the same semester, the Graduate School enriched its programs through the inclusion of MS in Electronics & Communications Engineering, Master in Information Technology, and Certificate of Public Administration & Governance.
The High School Program has been presented for formal survey on October 9-10, 2008, and immediately after the visit, it was conferred its Level l accreditation status by PAASCU covering the period November 28, 2008 – November, 2011.
In recognition for its accomplishments, adherence to quality assurance and commitment to public responsibility and accountability as higher education provider, the Commission on Higher Education granted to the University the Autonomous Status for the period March 11, 2009 to March 30, 2014.
On April 2, 2009, the University formally closed the celebration of the 75th Founding Anniversary with the launching of the book, Destiny and Destination: The Extraordinary Story and History of Holy Angel University 1933-2008, authored by Mr. Robert P. Tantingco. On the same occasion, the Main Building was dedicated to Don Juan and was renamed as Don Juan D. Nepomuceno Building.
School Year 2009-2010 marked the founding year for the College of Hospitality Management and College of Criminal Justice Education and Forensics. New academic programs have been offered, namely BS in Accounting Technology, BS in Criminal Justice Education with Forensics Program, BS in Aeronautical Engineering, BSBA in Legal Management, Master in Special Education, and Doctor of Technology. It was also highlighted by the CHED’s conferment of Hospitality Management Program as the first Center of Development in the country.
True to its Mission Statement, Holy Angel University continuously co-creates with all its stakeholders the quality educational experience and environment for the service of man and for the greater glory of God.
Laus Deo Semper!