Scholar-graduates need to embrace serving the nation not as part of their scholarship contract or obligation, but as something they willingly embrace and implement as patriotic Filipinos
Not because they were obligated, not grudgingly either, but because they love to
Twitter: @edd1819, Instagram: @bluestar0910, Facebook: SDN-Science, Digital & Current Affairs
By EDD K. USMAN
(SDN) — Scholarships are not that easy to come by, every student — high school or college — must prove themselves worthy first.
Or else the government would just be wasting tax payers’ money on students who don’t really have passion for their studies; students who are either weak or, worse, just plain purposeless.
Of course, the government won’t relish wasting scarce funds on fruitless programs. Including scholarships, that’s a no-brainer!
Comes the Department of Science and Technology with a number of scholarship programs through its Science Education Institute (DOST-SEI).
Led by Dr. Josette T. Biyo as its able director, SEI has many thousands of scholars in its stable of excellence every academic year; many have already finished their studies and some are now giving back to their country in various learned capacity.
With this in mind, Biyo’s SEI hosted recently a conference for its graduating scholars, a half-day online event. Objective: To remind the students of the “true essence of being national science scholars.”
Not just, to emphasize, “scholars” but “science scholars”. And there lies the importance of the SEI scholars, they are geared to promote and advance and embrace STEM courses, for they have direct or indirect impact on a nation’s march to progress and development. For STEM courses are synonymous with technology and innovation.
As many know, STI (science, technology, and innovation) is the engine that can help and propel the Philippines to Industry 4.0.
Or be left behind eating digital dust!
The DOST-SEI conducted the event on the internet for the first time on March 26 apparently because current health protocols still prohibit person-to-person mass activities.
SEI said a total of 703 participants composed of graduating undergraduate scholars; guest speakers; university representatives; and DOST officials convened for the activity.
Scholars must have perseverance, consistency, and dedication — Biyo
The conference, revolving around the theme “Renewing S&T Scholars Commitment to the Filipino People in the New Normal,” featured talks from government agencies and notable scholar-graduates to prepare attendees on life after graduation.
In her Welcome Remarks, Director Biyo expressed hope that the talks will ignite among scholars the desire to serve the country and that the service obligation turn to something they are “willing to do rather than supposed to do.”
She likewise congratulated them for their perseverance, consistency and dedication to reach the milestone and gave assurance that SEI shall continue to root for them.
DOST Secretary Fortunato T. de la Peña, meanwhile, spoke proudly of producing not only experts but also patriotic scholars, noting those who started volunteer initiatives in the Covid-19 relief in their respective regions.
“We’re confident that as DOST Scholars, you are sure to leave imprints in your work wherever you may go,” said the DOST chief.
Succeeding talks from DOST-SEI reminded the scholars of their scholarship obligations as well as introduced local and international Graduate Scholarship opportunities available for those wanting advanced degrees.
Department of Education’s (DepEd) Ruby Chanda Crisostomo also briefed attendees on DepEd’s Hiring Arrangements for Republic Act (RA) 10612/RA 7687 Scholars, while Department of Labor of Employment–National Capital Region’s (DOLE-NCR) Ryan Roberto Delos Reyes described the current labor market and presented insights on job application in the new normal.
Check your name here: 2020 results of scholarship exam
Dr. Jose Ernie Lope, Batch 1991 DOST-SEI Merit scholar and now professor at the Institute of Mathematics of the University of the Philippines – Diliman (UPD-IOM) closed the conference, sharing his inspiring journey from being a DOST scholar to now being one of the country’s pillars in mathematics education.
DOST through SEI has been implementing the following:
S&T Undergraduate Scholarships and Junior Level Science Scholarships for undergraduates.
And graduates, ASTHRDP-National Science Consortium (ASTHRDP-NSC), Capacity Building Program in Science and Mathematics (CBPSME), Engineering Research and Development for Technoloy (ERDT), Foreign Graduate Scholarship Program (FGSP), UAlberta S&T Graduate Scholarship Program, PhilFrance DOST Fellowship Program.
In March this year 5,917 examinees who took the RA 7687 Scholarship Program passed the competitive exam; on the other hand, 3,871 examinees made it under the DOST-SEI Merit Scholarship Program. That’s actually a total of 9,788 new scholars for the new school year.
In saying it’s not easy to become a government scholar, one must also consider the hardship and difficulties Biyo’s SEI and its personnel go through and put up with to implement the various scholarships, to make it more accessible to as many as possible students.
It’s not really a thankless job, it’s their job to implement it, but at least a scholar must consider that in ones mind. It’s called gratitude, it’s giving credit where it is due.
Meaning: Never take the government scholarships for granted. It did not grow out of a molehill. It’s of sweat and tears and mountains of tax payers’ money. (✓)