Design by Renz Joshua Palalimpa

Text by Liana Apostol

The launch of the UP online portal for first-year admission was marred by issues of inaccessibility and heavy online traffic Friday.

Within six hours of kicking off the systemwide admission process, UP issued two advisories warning users of potential delays in accessing the site.

The problems, according to the first advisory, were due to “some delays in domain name propagation” linked to users’ locations or internet service providers.

Another post from UP said users will have to wait for up to four hours before receiving email notifications, asking them to accomplish the application form as accurately as possible to “minimize procedural errors in the portal.”

With the admission process completely online, notifications are crucial in accessing the full application portal. An email containing the activation link grants users access to their account on the portal.

Another vital aspect of the process is the verification code used to log into the portal. A user must enter a one-time code every time they open the portal to view or edit their application. 

Several UP hopefuls expressed disdain after numerous unsuccessful attempts in accessing the portal.

Crystalyn Aguas, a senior high school student eyeing to get into UP Los Baños, has been trying to access the application form since 2 p.m. after receiving three unique codes rendered invalid by the site.

Less than an hour po akong naghintay [makatanggap ng] activation email, then six hours sa code [para gumana]. Ngayon, naghihintay ulit ako kasi nag-message po ako sa UP System, [at] sabi nila every attempt to log in magko-cause ng bagong code,” said Aguas, who is still unable to enter the portal as of writing.

Other students aiming to get into the university have not been able to sign up at all.

UP Manila aspirant Ariza Landicho has been sitting in front of her desk for hours, trying and retrying to create an account in the UP College Admissions Online site to no avail.

“The same error appears on my phone and laptop every time I try to sign up,” Landicho said.

The portal, which was originally slated to open on Jan. 7, was still “being finalized” at the time, according to UP. 

First-year applicants still have until Feb. 15 to sign up, giving them more than a month to finish their application. 

They must fill out and submit Form 1, which contains their personal information, while their current school will handle submitting grade transcripts for Form 2. 

The Office of Admissions will shortlist applicants based on final grades in Grades 8, 9, 10, and the first semester of Grade 11, “considering socio-economic and geographic factors” to equalize the playing field. 

Should an applicant be shortlisted for a degree program of their choice, UP will send instructions to fulfill additional requirements given by the degree program. 

This site malfunction comes after the university cancelled the annual UP College Admission Test, which would have been held on Oct. 10 to 11 last year had there been no pandemic.

For Landicho, this delay is only a road bump in her long-standing dream of being an Iskolar ng Bayan.

“I can wait,” Landicho said. “This is just the first day lang naman. In order to pursue the UP Dream, I’ll wait.” 

With reports by Cristina Chi

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