Around 30 students recently graduated with a four-year university degree under the El Nido municipal government’s comprehensive scholarship program for indigents.
Most of these students finished with tourism and hospitality management and education degrees in El Nido and Puerto Princesa City, the Municipal Social Welfare Development Office (MSWDO) said.
Vice Mayor Leonor Corral told Palawan News that the municipal government yearly allocates P5 million to the scholarship program, which aims “to give a break” to intelligent students who belong to poor families.
“If they won’t be able to go to school, what would happen? They would marry at a very young age. We believe it is through education they will have a bright future,” she said.
At Palawan State University’s El Nido campus, eight town scholars marched on Sunday, said Corral who guested the graduation rite.
“Once they are educated, they will have a positive outlook in life, and eventually they could give back by helping the municipal government in stirring economic development,” she added.
Last year, Corral said they employed their 17 scholars after obtaining their respective degrees.
The municipal government has started giving out scholarships to poor but deserving students since 2003. For the current school year, 346 students have benefited from the program.
Scholars receive an annual stipend of P1,500 for elementary, P2,500 for junior high school and P3,000 for senior high school. College scholars get P10,000 every semester.
To get retained in the program, students have to maintain a general weighted average of 85% for elementary and high school and 2.25 for college.
The MSWDO said they have been accepting applications since last month, with priority especially given to students who are indigent, orphan, neglected and abandoned, and single parent’s children.
Along with their filled up form, they also need to submit the following requirements: photocopy of birth certificate, report or class card record, certificates of good moral character from school head and indigency from barangay captain, certificate from school head for valedictorian and salutatorian applicant, and two pieces of 2X2 ID photo.
Applicants who passed the initial assessment are required to score at least 85% in the MSWDO-administered pre-qualifying exam.
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