TUGUEGARAO CITY- “Intelligence is not everything. You should have the heart, humility, sense of patriotism, and other values that will complete who a DOST Scholar should be. If there is anything we learn from this pandemic, it is that we do not just need bright scientist, we need scientist who have empathy.” Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Secretary Fortunato T. de la Peña said in his video message to the new DOST Undergraduate scholars from region 02.

DOST Region 02, through its Science and Technology (S&T) Scholarship Unit, welcomed 346 new Undergraduate Scholarship Qualifiers during their orientation and signing of scholarship agreement held via Zoom.

Dir. Virginia G. Bilgera, Officer in Charge-Office of the Regional Director, extended her heartfelt congratulations to the qualifiers. “It is not luck that you are here, it is what it is supposed to be, because you are beyond qualified and capable of being a Iskolar Para sa Bayan. Make the best out of this opportunity given to you. I am sure that someday, you will find your heart serving your fellow Filipino.” she stated.

Mary Ann P. Maglasin, Assistant Regional Director for Finance Administrative Support Services and Scholarships, also encouraged everyone to avail the scholarship. She stated that “It is an opportunity that everybody wishes for.”

Scholarship Policies and Agreement were discussed by Ms. Cecilia S. Calagui, Science Research Specialist II and Center Manager for S&T Scholarships, while Privileges and Scholar’s Obligation were discussed by Ms. Geraldine R. Cruz, Science Research Assistant of S&T Scholarships.

Due to the restrictions brought by community quarantines, the DOST-Science Education Institute (SEI) shifted from pen and paper examination to data analysis of academic grades. 207 MERIT and 139 RA 7687 Scholars were selected through a careful weighted analysis of multiple variables which include their grades in Grade 9-11.

Qualifiers will get full benefits of the scholarship, which includes a monthly stipend of ₱7,000; ₱40,000 tuition fee per academic year for those enrolled in private institutions; ₱10,000 annual book allowance; P1,000 one-time MS/PE clothing allowance; one economy-class roundtrip fare per year for those studying outside their home province; P1,000 graduation allowance; P10,000 for thesis allowance and group health and accident insurance.

Meanwhile, Deferment of Scholarship were advised for qualifiers enrolled in non-S&T Priority Programs and Higher Education Institutes that are not CHED identified Centers of Excellence (COE) or Centers of Development (COD). Deferment of scholarship may be allowed for one (1) academic year only. No financial assistance shall be released to the qualifier while on deferment period.

Some names were considered pending and they were notified to submit lacking requirements, as submission is currently on-going. The scholarship award takes effect in the First Semester of Academic Year 2021-2022. (Courtesy:S&T Pen 02-Jericho Fronda)