Three Bicolano youths qualify as future fisheries industry leaders

April 29, 2015 4:30 am 

By Danny O. Calleja

PILI, Camarines Sur, April 28 (PNA) – Three Bicolano youths have qualified to become future fisheries industry leaders for passing the Fisheries Scholarship Program (FSP) competitive examinations given last February to top 10 graduating high school students nationwide.

Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Regional Director for Bicol Dennis del Socorro here on Tuesday identified the lucky Bicolano youth examination passers and scholarship qualifiers as Kessie Gonzalga and Markanjo Bandola, both of the Bagolatao High School of Minalabac, Camarines Sur, and Marvin Duque of the Del Carmen Memorial High School in Casiguran, Sorsogon.

The examinations, administered by examiners from the BFAR Central Office assisted by the regional FSP coordinators and Provincial Fishery Officers, were given in a multiple-choice format in subject areas such as Abstract Reasoning, English, Mathematics, Science (Chemistry, Physics, Natural Science) and Fisheries.

A total of 1,066 examinees took the qualifying test called the Nationwide Competitive Examinations for the Industry Leaders in 24 strategic testing centers all over the country, Del Socorro said.

Under the scholarship program, the three Bicolano youths were among the 48 — three each coming from 16 regions of the country — who will pursue a four-year Bachelor of Science in Fisheries course to commence on the first semester of school-year 2015-2016.

Del Socorro said a scholar under this program was entitled to privileges such as free tuition and other school fees, Php3,000 monthly stipend; Php2,000 semestral book allowance; practicum transportation expenses not to exceed Php3,000; Php7,000 thesis support; and Php1,500 graduation support.

The scholarship grant is a program of the BFAR aimed at generating sufficient number of manpower to serve the fisheries industry and to assist deserving high school students in their pursuit of higher education.

Apart from the FSP, BFAR also offers the Fisherfolk Children Educational Grant (FCEG) under the Youth in Agriculture and Fisheries Program (YAFP), which is designed in furtherance of the Agriculture and Fisheries Modernization Act.

The Act, according to Del Socorro, mandates the Department of Agriculture and the National Agriculture and Fisheries Council, in collaboration with other concerned agencies, to expand its existing program for scholarships for degree and non-degree training in agriculture and fisheries.

The educational grant is specifically designed for capable and deserving youth, particularly the children of smallholder farmers and marginal fishermen, in order to encourage and support their studies, services and professional careers in agriculture and fisheries.

It is also aimed at producing new kind of farmers and fisheries professionals who are equipped with the necessary knowledge and skills and possess the right attitude in putting up agribusiness enterprises.

As a matter of guiding principles in the implementation, Del Socorro said, the FCEG was open to all deserving children of small farmers and fisherfolk and enlists the expertise of state universities and colleges in providing quality education for these children.

In implementing the YAFP, the DA believes that providing scholarship will attract young talented persons to go into agriculture and fishery professions, he said. (PNA)

RMA/FGS/DOC/CBD/

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