The Sorsogon State University (SorSU) is one of the oldest trade schools in the Philippines. It was established as Sorsogon Trade School in 1907, was renamed Sorsogon School of Arts and Trades by virtue of Republic Act 704 in June 1953 and again renamed Sorsogon College of Arts and Trades in 1976. In December 1993, after 86 years of existence, it was converted into a state college with three national vocational high schools in the province integrated to it. This was thru R.A. 7666 authored by then Cong. Salvador H. Escudero III and Sen. Leticia Ramos Shahani, approved on December 31, 1993, by President Fidel V. Ramos.

The university was formed from a province-wide umbrella system where four vocational schools were integrated. The Sorsogon College of Arts and Trades (SCAT) became School of Industrial Technology and Education (SITE) to concentrate on Teacher Education and Technology. The Sorsogon National Agriculture School (SNAS) became School of Agriculture and Agriculture Based Technology (SAABT), to concentrate on Agriculture and Agriculture Based Technology. Bulan Vocational High School was renamed School of Arts and trades (SAT) and became Institute of Management and Information Technology (IMIT) to concentrate on Business Management and Information Communication Technology (ICT), and Magallanes School of Fisheries became School of Fisheries and Fisheries Based Technology (SFFBT) to concentrate on Fishery Technology and Fisheries Resource Development. The main campus is located at Magsaysay Street, Sorsogon City.

The Presidents

Dr. Augusto R. Nieves

Term of Office: 1995 – 2005

As the former Director of Bureau of Technical and Vocational Education, before his term in Sorsogon State College (SSC), he was the steady hand that set the direction for institutionalization of policies in the Institution and the shift from Trade School to a College thru administrative and academic reforms.

Dr. Nieves pushed for enhancement and expansion of curriculum; open new undergraduate programs, and the School of Graduate Studies. His strategies for upgrading, enhancement and expansion spread from instruction, research, extension and production, which included Income Generating Project (IGP) to boost income productivity. Dr. Nieves was also responsible for establishing various school facilities. He was credited for sending faculty members to Australia and other countries under the Southeast Asia Ministers of Education Organization (SEAMEO) program and the network he established. Sorsogon State College was privileged to be a premier institution in the province and in the Region during his term.

Dr. Antonio E. Fuentes

Term of Office: 2005 – 2013

Dr. Antonio E. Fuentes was formerly the Campus Director of Castilla Campus for 10 years before his term as a second President of Sorsogon State College (SSC). His vision for SSC included the furtherance of all existing programs started by his predecessor and empowering the faculty and the support staff for a more efficient and effective instruction, research, extension, and production. His contributions were on the enhancement of faculty development program; curriculum development and aggressive program accreditation; and intensive research development, extension, and production. Dr. Fuentes made efforts to send faculty members to South Korea under the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) program, and sent faculty and non-teaching personnel for scholarships and other study leave and immersion programs. The College saw dramatic increase in institutional passing performance in licensure examinations and topnotchers in various programs.

Furthermore, Dr. Fuentes was credited for his initiatives in the establishment of Tissue Culture Laboratory, Agri-Fishery Laboratory, and Post-Harvest Building, Farmer’s Training Center, the Business Development Center (Bulan Campus), Audio Visual Hall, Auditorium, Student Pavilion and other facilities. In his term as the President, SSC-Magallanes and Castilla Campus were recognized by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) as the Provincial Institute in Fisheries and Agriculture from 2013 to 2016.

Dr. Modesto D. Detera

Term of Office: 2014 – 2018

Dr. Modesto Detera was a seasoned administrator and contributed to the development of the college in his 4 years as President. He was responsible for the offering of new programs particularly on doctorate degrees, master’s degree, and various undergraduate programs. He implemented a comprehensive faculty development program leading to quality instruction and excellent performance of graduates in licensure examinations. He was also accredited for laying the foundations of the requirements for Universityhood. He initiated the construction of the historic/iconic University Library in the main campus; forged agreements for the establishment of the Engineering Campus in Baribag and upgraded facilities of the institution. He was credited for the strengthened research development end extension services of the college.

Dr. Detera is noted for exercising prudence in the management of the College resources, earning the recognition and certification as 9001-2015 International Organization for Standardization (ISO) certified, and became a Civil Service Commission (CSC) PRIME-HRM Bronze awardee. It was also during his term that the College was awarded as Sentro ng Wika in 2016.

Dr. Helen R. Lara

Term of Office: 2018 – 2022

Dr. Helen Lara was the first Lady President of the Institution, and the Transition President of the University having been recognized for her efforts in the certification of Sorsogon State College into a full pledged University thru Commission on Higher Education (CHED) declaration last May 8, 2021. She steered the University into greater heights as she continued the works of her predecessors on the trifocal mandates of Higher Education Institutions (HEIs). She re-engineered ways of actualizing plans thru: policy enhancement, crafting of the University Strategic Plan and the Land Use Development and Infrastructure Plan. She was credited for the turnover of the administration and operation of the Sorsogon Community College, and the full transfer of the College of Engineering to Baribag Extension Campus. She worked for ensuring compliance with Certificate of Program Compliance (COPC) of all the program offerings of the University, notably, the 100% compliance for Bulan and Castilla Campuses.

Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, and the shift from face-to-face to online modalities, the outputs and outcomes of the University remarkably Increased including topnotchers in Engineering. She also set legacies in the establishment of state-of-the-art facilities and equipment.

Dr. Geraldine F. De Jesus

Term of Office: 2022 – Present

Dr. De Jesus is the 1st University President of Sorsogon State University. She was formerly the Campus Administrator of Sorsogon City Campus for 5 years. A transformational leader, noted Food Technologist, a CHED Regional Quality Assessment Team (RQAT) member, and an active researcher of the University, she is at the helm of the University who advocated for a shift in the overall character of the institution as a “Pamantasang may Puso” (“University with a heart”), strengthening the chain that binds all personnel to collaborate, cooperate and build on capacities to strengthen, sustain, expand and develop students, programs and projects, processes and provide support for excellent instruction, student support services, aggressive research development & extension, internationalization initiatives and engage in viable production activities for the development of the province and beyond.