Saturday, February 20, 2016

DOST-SEI, Intel, FIT-ED announces ‘innovation prize‘ for the youth

The Department of Science and Technology – Science Education Institute (DOST-SEI) recently partnered with Intel Technologies Philippines and the Foundation for Information Technology Education and Development (FIT-ED)—a non-profit organization advocating ICT learning among communities—to launch a project that will bank on creativity and innovativeness among teenagers.

Dubbed as “imake.wemake”, the project seeks to unleash the creativity of young Filipinos in innovation using accessible technologies that can address a certain community issue or social problem. The competition, which is launched this February, is open to teams with 15-18 year-old members who can propose an innovation or a product that can “solve a problem” using the Intel Galileo platform.

The Intel Galileo is a microcontroller board that can be used as a development tool in building simple to complex projects such as LED lights, robots, automation features in appliances, and many others.

“The technology empowers people, most especially the young tech savvy ones, to imagine and create something out of that imagination,” said SEI Director Dr. Josette Biyo. “Through this initiative, we want to make them think and be creative in utilizing the technology in making their innovations or products in mind become reality.”

Biyo added the imake.wemake project also intends to hone the students’ skills in communication, critical and analytical thinking, engineering and technical proficiencies, as well as the value of risk and failure analysis.

Submissions will come in the form of a project proposal stating the rationale, problem statement, objectives, methodology, and plan for the development of the innovation. A team from DOST-SEI, Intel, and FIT-ED will lead the assessment of the proposals.

Ten team-projects will be selected and will receive technical assistance and a unit of the Intel Galileo board from DOST-SEI. They will also undergo training, to be led by Intel Technical Consultants, before the build-phase, which can be up to three (3) months.

After the build period, teams will have to present their products and demonstrate their functionality through Poster and Project Presentations to the Jury.

Three prize awardees will emerge among the 10 and shall be conferred with the Youth Innovation Prize by DOST Secretary Mario Montejo including a P50,000 cash prize.

“As we aim to produce more scientists and engineers it is important that we let our students make something out of their imaginative minds. This competition will certainly be a good platform for creativity and we hope that they find their niche in innovation and become great ones in the future,” Biyo remarked.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Philippines' win most int’l science & math medals in 2015

Filipino science and mathematics wizards just keep getting better.

After setting a record 484 gold, silver and bronze medals from international science and mathematics competitions in 2014, our national contingents collected a total of 614 medals in 2015, stamping another memorable mark in the history books.

Youth Excellence in Science (YES) Awardees filled the stage at Phivolcs during the awarding ceremony held on February 4, 2016.
At the Youth Excellence in Science (YES) Awards—an annual event organized by the Department of Science and Technology – Science Education Institute (DOST-SEI) that recognizes students who win gold, silver and bronze medals in world science and mathematics contests—some of the medalists from Metro Manila and nearby provinces received their badges of honor from no less than DOST Secretary Mario Montejo. The ceremony was held on February 4, 2016 at the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology in Diliman, Quezon City.

Of the total tally, 321 come from the national capital region, while 293 come from the other regions.

Philippine Science High School – Main Campus garnered the most number of international medals with 52, followed by St. Jude Catholic School and Grace Christian College with 28 and 23, respectively.

Montejo lauded the historic achievement of the awardees, citing efforts of DOST in promoting science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) among the youth as reinforcements in the said feat.

He said that while a lot of issues and challenges remain to be faced in terms of S&T, the excellence of YES medalists prove that there will be great minds to drive the field in the future.

“Each year, the YES Awards reminds me that despite the difficult task of creating solutions to various challenges, the future of the Philippines is bright knowing that we are developing the future leaders well,” said Montejo who urged the medalists to choose STEM fields when they go to college.

Montejo cited the increased scholarship slots and strengthened benefits to motivate the students to go into STEM fields.

“The scholarship slots have soared since 2010 and we have indeed helped produce scientists and engineers in the process. We hope to capitalize on this improvement by encouraging all gifted students to go into sciences and make their mark in the field,” he added.

An Awardee from the historic 2015 batch receives his YES Medal from DOST Secretary Mario Montejo.

An Awardee from the historic 2015 batch receives his YES Medal from DOST Secretary Mario Montejo.
Meanwhile, one of the YES Awardees, Bryce Ainsley Sanchez of Grace Christian College addressed his fellow awardees and urged them to continue doing great in competitions.

Finally, DOST Undersecretary Dr. Rowena Cristina Guevara encouraged the students to follow into the foot steps of the likes of DOST scholar-graduates, Reinabelle Reyes, Gay Jane Perez, and others who are now “impact scientists” today.

“We have all the reasons to believe that you will be like them, if not better, in the future,” said the Undersecretary.