Dr. Luz Banes, a senior faculty member from the College of Accountancy and Economics is one of the recepients of the Asian Qualitative Research Association(AQRA) Heart Award 2017 given last April 26, 2017 at the Tagaytay County Hotel, Tagaytay City, for her meritorious service to the community during the AQRA 2nd International Conference aon Qualitative Research. Dr. Banes and her students' project was the Mangrove Tree Planting at Brgy. Bucal, Calatagan, Batangas.

The AQRA is an organization of Qualitative Researchers with a vision "to empower scholars in touching lives through qualitative research". They started the Heart Award for members "with the most touching social responsibility project". The award is usually given every month of February, and is open to all members. Guidelines and criteria were set by the AQRA. Entries in video clip format for 3-5 minutes were evaluated by the board of judges based on the significance of the project in touching people's lives.

Dr. Banes also presented her paper entitled "Traffic Congestion and Its Impact to Selected Business in Gil Puyat Station" during the conference.