Twenty (20) webinars covering industrial, environment, disaster risk reduction and management, health, research and development, academics, and leadership were all held in July 2020 by the Department of Science and Technology Scholars Association in Region 7 (DOST SA 7) amidst the COVID-19 pandemic when all students are subjected to mandatory quarantine.

The resource persons of the said public webinar series were alumni DOST Scholars from the region’s various universities. The webinars were shown from 8:00 PM to 9:00 PM based on scheduled dates.

 “Learning should never stop amidst this pandemic and DOST SA Region 7 is finding ways to connect especially those who are living in the countryside. We want to contribute something good during these trying times as Patriot Scholars for the nation,” DOST Scholars Association in Cebu President Crester Rhyan Ducay said.

“This initiative is the new platform for learning and making science education accessible for everyone. We fight as one, we learn as one, and we heal as one,” Scholars Organization in NegOr President Febb Adam Silagpo added.

The organizers included scholars who were studying at Cebu Technological University (CTU), Cebu Normal University (CNU), Cebu Institute of Technology-University (CITU), University of the Philippines – Cebu (UP), University of San Jose – Recoletos (USJ-R), University of San Carlos (USC), Negros Oriental State University (NORSU) and Silliman University (SU).

“Networks among scholars between Cebu and Negros Oriental DOST Scholars were connected after attending the Patriot Project Program of the DOST-SEI (Science Education Institute) in Cebu on February 25-26, 2020. The webinar initiative is considered as one of the relevant outputs of the project,” Elvirg F. Solana, Science Education Institute (SEI) – Cebu Scholarship staff said.

After the one-month run, scholars studying in Bohol universities are invited to join the upcoming initiatives.

“The initiatives of the DOST SA 7 are driven by the core values of being a Filipino Patriot and commendable. The present pandemic do not hamper them to show professional excellence, social responsibility and servant leadership. We are hoping that the same spirit lives in all of us, Filipinos, especially now that we are in a challenging health situation,” said Engr. Jesus F. Zamora Jr., Officer-in-Charge of DOST 7.

Now that the 2021 DOST-SEI (Science Education Institute) S&T Undergraduate Scholarships’ application is now open for online registration, the scholars’ organization will also conduct online tutorials for the benefit of the scholarship applicants. Within their capacity, the organization considers to assist the needs of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs).

Industry partners supportive to the webinar series initiative were DOST assisted MSMEs in Negros Oriental. It includes Chef Tobz Cakes and Pastries and Tribal Miracle Oil in Dumaguete City, Joring’s Café in Canlaon City and LM Renoboth Pork Chicharon in Bayawan City. (DOST Negros Oriental PSTC Media Service)