Gov. Amado T. Espino, Jr. has distributed scholarship grants last June 10 to 100 new academic scholars amounting to P7,000 as financial assistance to each scholar for their college education under the academic scholarship assistance program of the Provincial Scholarship Fund Board (PSFB) at the Sison Auditorium here.
In his speech, Gov. Espino has stressed the importance of education among the youth as he told the provincial scholars that “education is the best equalizer in life because it is only through education or our acquired knowledge that we achieve equal status with others.”
Gov. Espino said the program seeks to help the Pangasinan youth to develop them into better citizens in the future as he said: “we are pinning our hopes on you.”
The new scholars who made it to the new list of provincial academic scholars were among the more than 500 poor but deserving high school graduates from indigent families who underwent qualifying examinations last May 11 given by the province in coordination with the five divisions of the Department of Education in Pangasinan.
Dr. Mina Francisco, chief administrative officer of the office of the Governor and executive chairman of the PSFB academic scholarship management team, said that with the addition of new scholars, the number of academic scholars now totals to 385.
This year’s top ten examinees include Lingayen’s Fern Adriel M. Velasco on the top list. Velasco is a 16 year old graduate of Pangasinan National High School who is now enrolled in Accountancy.
The other members of the top ten are: Lhea B. Ubod of Sison; Remi Renzel M. Castillo, Mangaldan; Darien John Rivera Rosales; Leo Erandio, Jr., Bolinao; Ian Kit Bautista,San Fabian; Erwin Ortiz,Lingayen; Jims Collin Ibasan, Binmaley; Ryan James Cancino, San Carlos City; and Fatima Asuncion, Binmaley.
Dr. Francisco has also noted that this year’s selection has been revitalized with the inclusion of new policies into the program.
The new amendments she said include the assistance of the five schools division superintendents in the formulation of test questions to comply with the principles of test preparation and the minimum learning competencies required of high school graduates.
She said that to maximize the participation of students and to make the program more competitive and far-reaching, the examinations were also conducted in two venues, the Pangasinan National High School for the divisions of Pangasinan I, Alaminos City and San Carlos City; and Juan G. Macaraeg National High School for the divisions of Pangasinan II and Urdaneta City.
The academic scholars include the automatic qualifiers who are valedictorians and salutatorians of their high school class.
Dr. Francisco said each will receive an educational assistance of P7,000 per semester.
The PSFB is part of the youth development program of Gov. Amado T. Espino, Jr. which seeks to provide quality education to poor but deserving Pangasinan college students.
The recipients can enroll in ladderized courses on Education and Engineering, Social Work, Entrepreneurship, Agriculture and Agro-Industrial Courses, and Philippine Studies such as History, Culture and the Arts.
However, due to the surplus of nursing graduates, effective Academic Year 2011 until further notice, the scholarship grant does not cover the Bachelor of Science in Nursing. (PIO/Angeline D. Villanueva)