DOST expands scholarship program to 4 more universities

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Science and Technology-Science Education Institute (DOST-SEI) announced that more universities across the nation have opened to offer the DOST graduate scholarship programs in science and mathematics education.

DOST offers wider access to graduate scholarship program by adding more schools.
DOST offers wider access to graduate scholarship program by adding more schools.

Early this week, DOST Secretary Fortunato de la Peña signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with presidents of 16 leading universities and colleges.

Cebu Normal University (CNU), Leyte Normal University (LNU), Saint Mary’s University (SMU) and Mindanao State University – Iligan Institute of Technology were added to the list of schools.

The partnership was aimed at expanding DOST’s program Capacity Building Program in Science and Mathematics Education (CBPSME) - graduate scholarship for master's and doctorate degrees in science and mathematics education.

The program aims to improve the quality of science and mathematics education and accelerate the development of critical mass of experts in science and mathematics education.

Universities who joined the consortium were:

University Master’s Doctorate
Ateneo de Manila University Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, Physics, Science Education Mathematics Education
Bicol University Biology, Chemistry, General Science, Mathematics, Physics Mathematics
Central Luzon State University Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics
De La Salle University Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, Physics Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, Physics
Mariano Marcos State University Biology, Chemistry, Science Education, Mathematics, Physics
Mindanao State University-Marawi Mathematics, General Science Biology, Mathematics
Philippine Normal University Biology, Chemistry, General Science, Mathematics, Physics Mathematics Education, Science Education
University of San Carlos Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, Physics Biology, Chemistry, Physics
University of the Philippines Diliman Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, Physics
University of the Philippines Open University Biology Education, Chemistry Education, Mathematics Education, Physics Education
Western Mindanao State University Biology
West Visayas State University Biology, Mathematics, Physics Biology, Mathematics
Cebu Normal University Please contact S&T Scholarship Division for more details.
Leyte Normal University
Saint Mary’s University
Mindanao State University – Iligan Institute of Technology

The effort to include more universities was made to encourage more scholars to apply and pursue their education without worries of being far from their families and homes.

DOST Secretary De La Peña said, “We are hopeful that with the signing of this MoU, we shall have more scholars and we can look forward to the fruits of this collaboration – a better STEM education for our young people.”

Qualifications for CBPSME graduate scholarship are:
  • Filipino citizen
  • not more than 45 years old at the time of application
  • in good health and good moral character
  • pass the admission requirements for graduate studies at any of the consortium member-universities
  • have at least two years teaching experience in science and mathematics for PhD; or at least one year teaching experience or have graduated with academic honors or graduated as DOST scholar for Master’s
  • if employed: Be allowed to study full-time for two or three years (Residential Mode) and part-time for six years at UPOU (Distance Education Mode)
  • not be a recipient of other scholarship
  • be willing to accept the terms and conditions specified in the Scholarship Contract.

  • Accomplished Application Form
  • Photocopy of Birth Certificate
  • If employed, Certification of Employment and Permit to Study (Form 2)
  • Medical Certificate (Form 3)
  • Certified True Copy of Service Record, if employed
  • Certified True Copy of Official Transcript of Records (TOR)
  • Notice of Admission to the Master’s/PhD in Science and Mathematics Education programs in the Graduate School at any of the identified universities
  • Endorsement from two former professors
  • Letter of nomination/recommendation from the head of the university.

Scholarship Privileges

MS/PhD Component
Master’s Doctoral
Tuition Fee and other schools fees Actual Actual
Stipends P25,000/month P33,000/month
Book Allowance P10,000/ academic year
Group Health and Accident Insurance Premium
Transportation Allowance (for those studying outside of home province) 1 economy roundtrip fare / academic year
Thesis/Dissertation Allowance P50,000.00 P100,000.00

Secure and file your application (details here).
For more information, you can contact the S&T Scholarship Division:
Tel nos.: 8371333/ 8390083/ 8372071 local 2382;
Cellphone no.: 09278868816;

— Sally, The Summit Express

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OFW dad surprises kid with one-of-a-kind balikbayan box

A lot of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) enjoy sending balikbayan boxes to their families and friends back in the Philippines. These balikbayan boxes are often filled with goodies they bought in the country they are working with; and many of these countries have arrangements for affordable courier systems to take these items to the OFWs’ home country.
OFW dad surprises kid with one-of-a-kind balikbayan box

Most OFW families, especially the children, have become used to receiving balikbayan boxes especially during Christmas time.

OFW dad surprises kid with one-of-a-kind balikbayan box

But one girl recently received a one-of-a-kind balikbayan box.

Marco Caesar shared a video of his niece standing next to a balikbayan box, smiling from ear to ear. It was just a standard photo beside the balikbayan box filled with goodies and treats, the girl thought. What she did not know is that this box was extra special.

OFW dad surprises kid with one-of-a-kind balikbayan box

The girls parents are both OFWs. They were not supposed to go home this year; their schedule for going home was supposed to be next year but the couple took pity on their daughter who would be spending Christmas without her family. So, the dad decided to take a break from work and be the one to spend Christmas with her.

His coming home was already a surprise for the kid but this dad knew he had to add one more surprise to the list. So, he enlisted the family’s help and got into a balikbayan box that the girl was supposed to open.

OFW dad surprises kid with one-of-a-kind balikbayan box

She fully expected to find chocolates and other goodies inside the box as she happily posed for the camera. She was all smiles but after opening the box and finding her dad inside, the girl could not hold back tears in her eyes. It was a joyful, though rather teary, reunion for the father and daughter who had not seen each other in months.

What a sweet moment…

— Joy Adalia, The Summit Express

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PBA Governors' Cup Finals: Magnolia escapes Alaska, takes 3-2 series lead

MANILA, Philippines – What a nail-biting game! Paul Lee’s on-time game-winning jumper rewarded the Magnolia Hotshots a much needed win and above all, a 3-2 series advantage after edging the Alaska Aces, 79-78 on Friday, December 14, 2018 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

Paul Lee proved why he’s the Best Player of the Conference
Paul Lee proved why he’s the Best Player of the Conference by hitting a game-winning jumper for Magnolia and 3-2 series lead over Alaska | Photo Credit:

With both squads playing a virtual best-of-three finals after Alaska tied the series at 2 apiece last Wednesday, the winner of Game 5 will surely be having the unsurmountable confidence in the next game. Because of this, the protagonists were all out as early as the tip off.

The game was too close to call and the players were too intense defensively that resulted to a number of deadlocks and lead changes midway of the opener.

The reinforcements of both squads put on a show as the locals led by series arch nemesis Mark Barroca and Chris Banchero assisted them in the offensive department. Magnolia however, had a very slight edge after the 1st period, 29-28.

Newly-crowned Best Player of the Conference, Paul Lee, unleashed his scoring prowess in the the 2nd quarter as his team grabbed its first double-digit lead of the game.

Physicality had been part of the series even from the start of this finals. Players kept on hitting the deck that even college teammates Rome Dela Rosa and Jake Pascual traded bodies to fight for positions and ball possessions.

Hotshots’ secret in this game and the reason why they were ahead by a significant number was containing the Best Import of the Conference, “Monster” Mike Harris. The Aces did the same to Romeo Travis but they failed to neutralize the Magnolia locals.

Ian Sangalang for an instance. The former San Sebastian Stag got into double-digits in the 2nd period and outscored the entire Hotshots who only scored 6 points in more than 11 minutes in the same quarter.

53-40 was the score at the half in favor of the Magnolia Hotshots.

The halftime powwow made a huge difference for the Aces as they rallied and cut the lead down to just 5 in just 2 minutes after the 3rd quarter commenced.

Mike Harris finally broke out of his shell and initiated Alaska’s 13-2 scoring run. In contrast, his counterpart, Romeo Travis, had a very bad night with just 4 markers in 30 minutes of basketball.

Together with Harris, Kevin Racal was simply exceptional in the third. In fact, his long trey erased the 17-point humongous Magnolia lead in the 1st half and gave them the lead after quite some time in this game.

Romeo Travis atoned his subpar performance during the dying minutes of the third as he brought the lead back to his team’s side, 65-62.

Travis might had an off night but his guards Mark Barroca and Jio Jalalon stepped up big time to increased their chances of winning game number 5. Jalalon didn’t only pinned Alaska down in terms of scoring. The 5’9” court general even beat everyone in the rebounding department.

Just as the Hotshots gained their momentum, the Aces out of nowhere surprised them with a series of buckets and found themselves ahead of their rivals once again.

The last few seconds of the game was crazy where Alaska was up by just 2. A handful shot attempts were made by both teams but missed them all until Paul Lee found the wide opened Ian Sangalang for a deuce and one.

Alaska had 18 seconds left and down by just a point. Mike Harris got fouled by rafi Reavis and fortunately sank both of his foul shots for the lead.

11 ticks was spared for Magnolia to win the game or go home. Paul Lee orchestrated the play and found the cutting Romeo Travis at baseline but his import missed the shot. The ball luckily fell into the hands of Lee who sank the jumper for the 79-78 victory.

The Magnolia Hotshots can finish off the Alaska Aces on Wednesday, December 19, 2018 for Game 6 at the Ynares Center in Antipolo City.

The Scores

Magnolia 79 – Sangalang 20, Barroca 14, Jalalon 13, Lee 11, Travis 10, Herndon 6, Dela Rosa 4, Reavis 1, Melton 0, Brondial 0, Simon 0.

Alaska 78 – Harris 28, Enciso 13, Racal 13, Pascual 6, Exciminiano 5, Cruz 4, Banchero 3, Casio 2, Teng 2, Manuel 2, Baclao 0, Galliguez 0.

Quarters: 29-28, 53-40, 65-62, 79-78.

— Joey Boy Capos, The Summit Express

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Shopee Philippines wraps up a record-breaking 2018

MANILA, Philippines – Shopee, the leading e-commerce platform in Southeast Asia and Taiwan, wraps up a record-breaking year with its highly successful Shopee 12.12 Big Christmas Sale. On 12 December, Shopee saw over 12 million orders across the region, surpassing all past records including the recent Shopee 11.11 Big Sale.

Shopee Philippines wraps up a record-breaking 2018
Shopee wraps up a record-breaking 2018 with over 12 million orders on 12.12 Big Christmas Sale

Supported by more than 450,000 brands and merchants, Shopee recorded 48 million visits as users shopped 60 million deals across all categories. Shopee’s in-app games were also highly popular; Shopee Shake was played 46 million times throughout the campaign, while the newly launched Shopee Quiz saw 11 million participants tuning in from across the region.

In the Philippines, Mobile and Accessories, Health and Personal Care, and Women’s Apparel were the top three most popular categories. Leading brands, including Maybelline, the SM Store, Xiaomi, and Pampers emerged as favourites amongst users.

Terence Pang, Chief Operating Officer, Shopee, said, “Shopee 12.12 Big Christmas Sale marks another significant milestone as we celebrate a year of exponential growth. Following the success of Shopee 11.11 Big Christmas Sale in November and Shopee 9.9 Super Shopping Day in September, it has been an exciting and fulfilling quarter for us as we surpass past records and set new benchmarks to reach next year. As we wrap up 2018, we would like to thank our loyal users, sellers, and partners for their continued support; and we look forward to having everyone join us in attaining even greater heights in 2019.”

Shopee’s achievements in Southeast Asia and Taiwan

Since launching in 2015, Shopee has seen tremendous growth across its seven markets, achieving over 195 million downloads across Southeast Asia and Taiwan . In the third quarter of 2018, Shopee saw 158.8 million gross orders and US$2.7 billion in gross merchandise value (GMV), a respective 24.0% and 21.1% increase from last quarter.

Shopee Philippines’ key milestones in 2018

2018 has proven to be an exciting year for Shopee Philippines. Key highlights include:

1. Scaled up partnerships with leading brands: To date, Shopee has widened its product assortment to around 800 leading brands and retail partners on Shopee Mall; including Maybelline, Platinum Karaoke, Vivo, The SM Store, Head and Shoulders, Asus, Robinsons Appliances, Bosch, and Xiaomi. This year, Shopee also partnered with top brands to hold major events; including a beauty workshop in partnership with Maybelline and Palmolive to celebrate female empowerment, and an exclusive fashion show with Avel x Matteo in line with the launch of Shopee Celebrity Club.

2. Deepened engagement with users: Launched popular in-app games to drive user engagement, including the iconic Shopee Shake; and the latest in-app game, Shopee Quiz, which saw 400,000 participants throughout the entire Shopee 12.12 Big Christmas Sale.

3. Extended reach across the Philippines: Worked closely with top Filipino celebrities including Anne Curtis, Shopee Philippines’ first brand ambassador; and Jose Mari Chan, Shopee’s Christmas ambassador; to reach out to even more users and fans across the country.

To round off Shopee’s Christmas celebrations, users can shop one final round of Christmas treats at the Shopee 12.12 Thank You Sale happening from December 13 to 14.

Shop the Shopee 12.12 Thank You Sale here.

— The Summit Express

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‘Aquaman’ Movie Review: Jason Momoa introduces a brand new wave of superheroes into the DCEU

Marking Warner Bros. and DC’s return in the comic book movie arena is the arrival of Aquaman starring Jason Momoa as Arthur Curry who was introduced briefly in Zack Snyder’s “Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice” and officially met in “Justice League.” Directed by James Wan from the “Conjuring” franchise and “Furious 7”, the movie takes place after the events of Steppenwolf’s failed attempt to take over the world and will serve as the origin story to the hybrid hero.
‘Aquaman’ Movie Review: Jason Momoa

Jason Momoa as Arthur Curry in ‘Aquaman’/Warner Bros.

*Minor Spoilers Ahead*

“Aquaman” tackles Arthur’s own personal journey to claim his place as the rightful heir to the Atlantean throne as Queen Atlanna’s (Nicole Kidman) first born. However, his half-brother, Orm (Patrick Wilson) stands in his way. Fortunately, he has a couple of allies in Mera (Amber Heard) and Vulko (Willem Dafoe).

Nicole Kidman as Atlanna in ‘Aquaman’/Warner Bros.

A major shift for the DCEU

Coming from the financial flop that was Justice League, the DCEU took more than a year hiatus to regroup and reconsider their franchise plans moving forward. And although what “Aquaman” eventually become was always what Wan envisioned it to be, it’s important to note that this film is very different from previous installment in the cinematic universe.

Gone are the brooding heroes and dreary visuals, and in their place are a lead character with a sense of fun and a feast for the eyes - especially when one focuses on how much focus Wan and his team put into details that pivotal in world building. Momoa’s charm and cool vibe easily makes him the darling of the franchise.

That said, “Aquaman’s” star-studded supporting cast not only elevates Momoa’s performance, it builds on the established lore of the DCEU. The introduction of Mera follows the footsteps of Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman - strong female character that can hold her own ground. Her dynamic with Arthur is fun to watch and with a budding romance with Arthur, fans should be excited about a full-fledged love story moving forward.

Speaking of love story, the heart of “Aquaman” lies in the relationship between Arthur’s parents - Atlanna and lighthouse keeper, Thomas (Temuera Morrison). In just a couple of scenes, the movie sells their undying love for each other which fuels the lead hero’s motivation throughout the film. In its core, “Aquaman” is a family film - everybody can definitely find something to enjoy in it.

Bogged down by structural and pacing issues

Despite everything that’s great in “Aquaman,” the film has glaring problems. The film runs for two hours and 20 minutes and that feels way too long especially with regard to what they want to accomplish. Following a great first act, things get lost in the shuffle in the middle of the film with various twist and turns that look and sound entirely different from what came before it. Tonal shifts are so sharp it becomes jarring at times. A

At the end of the day, “Aquaman’s” problems are rooted from the same one “Justice League” and “Dawn of Justice” had - it’s crammed full that sometimes, it loses sight of what it’s supposed to be. In return, this hinders people’s (mostly casual fans who are not invested in the franchise) ability to feel for Arthur and ultimately root hard for him. The movie would’ve been better if the script was tighter and the story concise and focused.

Amber Heard as Mera and Jason Momoa as Arthur Curry in ‘Aquaman’/Warner Bros.

Call it a decent comeback

All in all, “Aquaman” brings the DCEU a step closer to the ideal franchise Warner Bros. wants it to be. In the pantheon of films in the series, it’s easily one of the most enjoyable thus far. It’s also a great entryway for casual moviegoers who just want a good time in theaters and not feel lost about backstory and what the movie means in the bigger picture. Yes, it has major issues, but Wan’s bold narrative and visual choices are commendable and the cast is great. For what it’s worth, the spectacle alone is worth seeing the movie.

RATING: 7 out of 10

— ALD, The Summit Express

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Woman earns ire for complaint about messy table occupied by old man at Jollibee

When dining out, do you complain about messy tables and poor service at the place where you are eating? While answers might differ, depending on the case, a woman has recently been dubbed snobbish after she complained about a messy table occupied by an old man at Jollibee.
Snobbish woman earns ire for complaint about messy table occupied by old man

Everyone is, of course, entitled to complain about messy tables but the woman’s approach was condescending. She received netizens’ ire after she continued complaining about the table, despite knowing that its occupant is an old man.

Snobbish woman earns ire for complaint about messy table occupied by old man
Photo credit: Gelica Manuel Tulauan / Facebook

“Ano ba yan?! Ang baboy!” the woman shouted as she spotted the table, talking to no one in particular inside Jollibee Waltermart Makati.

Curious, netizen Gelica Manuel Tulauan turned to the woman and checked the table she was pointing at. True enough, the spot was so messy, with rice and bones scattered all over the place. Sauce was also making the area more messy.

Since the service crew were busy at the time, Tulauan silently helped the woman.

“May mga tao talagang akala nila alila nila ‘tong mga fast food crew, e. Ako, malinis ako kumain sa ganitong lugar kasi alam ko ring mahirap ang trabaho nila,” the woman explained.

“People experience various difficulties, even disabilities, as they grow much older; this is part of a person’s life and many have come to accept these as challenges that must be overcome.”

Acknowledging that the woman had a good point, Tulauan agreed but still kept her silence.

Snobbish woman earns ire for complaint about messy table occupied by old man
Photo credit: Gelica Manuel Tulauan / Facebook

She angrily told the crew to clear up the table but the crew left and went back shortly afterwards, telling her that the table’s occupant was not yet done eating.

“The lady looked aghast as she stared at the old man who sat down in front of the mess and continued eating. She exclaimed, ‘Hay, naku! Pakilipat na lang ako dun sa isang table. Nakakasuka talaga!’ Her tone was condescending and her voice was loud enough for the people around to turn their heads to our direction,” Tulauan shared.

“She looked at me as she was making her way to the other table, as if she couldn’t fathom the idea of me continuing to eat so close to the old man and his mess of food.”

Tulauan decided to stay in the same table as the man, making some small talk. She learned that he was formerly a Physics teacher. Back in the day, he invented a War Tactics board game that was sold in Goodwill Bookstores.

As they continued talking, Tulauan learned a lot about this old man named Nestor. She later shared some photos on Facebook, encouraging everyone to stop always complaining about things and start listening…

“But everytime we fail to look beyond what our eyes can see, little by little, our vision becomes blurry. Until we lose sight of what truly matters. Until we turn completely blind to all the goodness and kindness in this world.,” Tulauan wrote.

— The Summit Express

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DepEd's 2019 budget approved, assures more bonuses, allowance increase

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Education’s proposed budget for 2019 has finally been approved by the Senate.

Senate approved the 2019 Education budget
The Senate approved the 2019 Education budget | Photo Courtesy: Facebook/DepEd Philippines

DepEd Executive Committee, led by Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones, and budget sponsor Sen. Bam Aquino breathed a sigh of relief after the Senate approved the education budget during a plenary hearing that lasted over an hour.

Education secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones
Education secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones | Photo Courtesy: Facebook/DepEd Philippines

Meanwhile, DepEd Undersecretary Finance-Budget and Performance Monitoring Annalyn Sevilla gave assurances that teachers can expect more good news in the coming year. First, she addressed the issue of bonuses. The Education official clarified that they have worked hard to give this year's bonuses on time.

Sevilla said, “We will make sure that everyone will receive the anniversary bonus, this is PHP3,000. That’s all employees. Also, the year-end bonus.”

She also clarified why some personnel have yet to receive the bonus. Sevilla said that DepEd is a big organization, so it might take time for teachers and personnel in remote schools to receive their bonuses.

Nevertheless, the DepEd official gave an assurance that their personnel can expect more bonuses and higher allowance by 2019.

Sevilla said the agency has worked hard to implement an increase in the allowances and the benefits stated in the Magna Carta for Teachers and other personnel.

The agency already made a move to increase the chalk allowance from P3,500 to P5,000.

Sevilla said, “Increase for chalk allowance will be in 2019. In fact, there will be more increases in 2019. We just don’t want to announce hangga’t di pa siya naisasabatas (while it’s not yet ratified).”

While the salary increase is still being put on the shelf, DepEd said they are already working on several financial benefits for their teaching and non-teaching staff.

“The Secretary and the whole department has worked hard na madagdagan hindi lamang ang chalk allowance kundi iba pang benepisyo na nakalagay naman sa Magna Carta ng Teachers and employees,” Sevilla added.

— Sally, The Summit Express

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PHOTOS: Catriona Gray stuns at the Miss Universe 2018 preliminary competition

MANILA, Philippines – Miss Universe Philippines Catriona Gray was oozing with confidence and beauty during the preliminary competition Thursday night, December 13.
PHOTOS: Catriona Gray stuns at the Miss Universe 2018 preliminary competition

During the introduction, Catriona wore a sparkly black dress made by Sherri Hill. Last September, Catriona walked for Sherri Hill 2019 Spring Fashion Show during the New York Fashion Week.

Catriona Gray stuns at the Miss Universe 2018 preliminary competition
Catriona Gray made her signature “lava walk” | Photo Courtesy: Vogue Thailand

Catriona captivated the crowd when she strutted down in her hot pink bikini for the swimsuit competition. Her swimsuit was designed by Thailand's princess Sirivannavari Nariratana. Catriona made her signature “lava walk” and drew gasps from the audience when she made a dramatic slow-mo twirl.

For the long gown competition, Catriona wore a an intricate glittery orange gown with a long side slit. Created by the fashion designer Mak Tumang, Catriona helped envision the look. The gown is named “Adarna”, inspired by the Philippine literature mythical bird Ibong Adarna.

Catriona Gray stuns at the Miss Universe 2018 preliminary competition
Catriona wore an Ibong Adarna-inspired long gown | Photo Courtesy: Facebook/Binibining Pilipinas

On Instagram, Tumang shared that the three final gowns of Catriona were products of 7 sketches, four prototype and the collective efforts of over 16 artisans in 113 days.

SEE ALSO: Catriona Gray wows with Miss Universe national costume

The total cost of all the gowns Catriona used was at P1,025,091.

Catriona Gray stuns at the Miss Universe 2018 preliminary competition
Intricate details of Catriona's long gown by Mak Tumang | Photo Courtesy: Instagram/Mak Tumang

In the pageant’s preliminary competition, judges will be choosing their top 20 or the semi-finalists. The results would only be announced on Miss Universe coronation night on December 17.

Here’s a few snippets of Catriona’s performance:

— Sally, The Summit Express

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