The exit that promises “return”: New batch of DOST-SEI scholar graduates called to serve the Filipino people

As the science community welcomes another batch of DOST-SEI scholar graduates, it also embraces a new cohort of competent Filipino citizens – those who are determined to give back by serving as an addition to the country’s critical pool of S&T workforce and empowered to take an active role in becoming instrumental figures to nation-building.

This year, around 1500 NCR-based DOST Undergraduate Scholars convened at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) in Pasay City for the 2024 Graduating DOST-SEI Scholars’ Exit Conference – courtesy of the Department of Science and Technology – Science Education Institute (DOST-SEI).

This annual event aims to reorient the new batch of scholar graduates of their scholarship obligations and inculcate in them the real value of serving the country after their graduation. It challenges them to become the future’s great Filipino STEM leaders – ready to create a significant and meaningful impact not only in their own communities, but in the whole country.

Ms. Sharamae Torres-Co of the DOST-SEI Science and Technology Scholarships Division (STSD) discussed the terms and policies for the various scholarships: RA 7687, Merit, and RA 10612; while Ms. Sheryl Lee Sales, also from the Institute’s STSD, introduced the various DOST-SEI local and foreign graduate scholarship programs, which the scholars may avail should they pursue their graduate studies in the future.

DOST Secretary Renato Solidum Jr., in his virtual message reminded the scholar-graduates of their commitment to serve the nation. He urged them to use their expertise to contribute to nation-building and be of service to the people.

Meanwhile, DOST-SEI Officer-in-Charge Engr. Albert G. Mariño expressed his heartfelt congratulations to the new batch of DOST-SEI scholar-graduates and encouraged them to never be afraid of failing and trying out new things. He hailed the scholars’ limitless s potential and reminded them of their capacity to uplift the lives of Filipinos.

Former DOST-SEI Director and Philippine Normal University (PNU) President Dr. Ester B. Ogena also graced the event and shared her inspiring journey in applying to various scholarship opportunities during her time. She highlighted the importance of having an innovative mindset in decision-making and hoped that everyone could work on becoming the catalysts of change that the country needs today.

“As DOST-SEI scholar-graduates, you must all be good key players. Don’t ever look at the exit of the program on the negative side. Withdrawing from any obligation, quitting, escaping – these are the things that you must never do,” said Dr. Ogena.

With the students’ eventual exit to the program, Dr. Ogena also motivated the scholars to never stop learning and forwarded the significance of 4Cs: Critical thinking, Communication, Collaboration, and Creativity – the key competencies essential to thrive in various industries.

The Exit Conference also became a venue for the scholars to forward their questions and concerns related to the scholarship terms and policies. They were glad to have attended the conference as they have picked some lessons which would prove beneficial in their journeys. They echoed how the talks have answered their inquiries and enlightened them about the true essence of being an Iskolar ng Agham para sa Bayan.

Graduating DOST-SEI scholars are all smiles as they pose for a photo opportunity, together with the DOST-SEI officials, during the conclusion of the 2024 Exit Conference.

Mr. Peter Gerry Gavina, Chief of Scholarship Division, concluded the Exit Conference by congratulating and praising the scholars for their perseverance, consistency, and dedication in being the best S&T scholars of their time.

Mr. Gavina expressed hope that the talks would ignite in the scholars the desire to serve the country and assured that the Institute would continue rooting for them, while also highlighting the Institute’s various graduate scholarship offerings should they decide to level up their science education.


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