By Nathaniel Sabater and Lance dela Pena
Guided by adaptability, intelligence, and passion, the FEU Scholars’ Society launched its first International Student Achievers Forum [ISAF] on April 15 and 22, 2021. The virtual inter-school conference is a pioneer initiative, in collaboration with the FEU International Relations Office, to bring together 100 student scholars across the world. The event aims to empower the youth to take participatory actions towards global issues and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by creating solution-focused proposals.
The said forum carried the theme, “Flexible Leaders: A Collective Intelligence of Scholars towards Building a Great Foundation.” It focused on three areas of interests: (1) amplifying the voice of the youth sector, (2) forming and strengthening partnerships with different institutions, and (3) upholding the value of responsibility amidst the challenges brought about by the new normal.
On April 15 (Day 1), three keynote speakers imparted valuable insights about the youth’s role towards Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Charles Lucas Chacha, a global educator on injustices to women, discussed SDG 5 (Gender Equality) and SDG10 (Reduced Inequalities). Lyka Crystal Jane Ty, current FEU Scholars’ Society President and Regional Director for Membership at Lambak Youth Region 2, shed light on the importance of SDG4 (Quality Education). Meanwhile, Sayantan Bhaumik, product developer for Mind.io and founder of Ecology Lifescience, focused on the developments needed to achieve SDG 8 (Decent Work and Economic Growth).
During the afternoon session, distinguished student achievers Karl Patrick Taguberi, Lavisha Solanki, and Dann Andrew Mendoza gave their inspiring messages to their fellow scholars to attain sustainable development goals. Volunteer mentors from the Global Institute for Youth Development, Inc. (GIYD), led by Karlo Jayson Abila, together with Joal Cocjin and John Paul De Dios, also shared their insights during the breakout session. They guided the scholars on their solution-focused proposals about the three specific areas of interests.
On April 22, the participants presented their sustainable proposals. The following outstanding groups and individuals emerged:
GROUP CATEGORY AWARDEES
EXCELLENCE AWARD ON INNOVATION
Covid-19 Community Roaming Testing Mobile by Renmel Joseph F. Purisima, Arlene P. Paguio, Jenina M. Castro Erika Yvette G. Nicdao, Ann Marie Ysabelle C. Torion and Lyneth Anne B. Madura from Don Honorio Ventura State University, and Isah Inusa from Yobe State University
EXCELLENCE AWARD ON SUSTAINABILITY
The Cries and Voices That Could Change the World by Angelea D. Dacanay from Far Eastern University, Alvi Roelanda from Health Polytechnic Pontianak, Jerome A. Manalang from Don Honorio Ventura State University, and Enrique S. Cagas from University of Science and Technology of Southern Philippines – Claveria Campus
EXCELLENCE AWARD ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY
Ending World Hunger One Step At A Time by Joan Rubio, Christine Infiesto and Marie Joy Dela Cruz from Far Eastern University, and Shania Twain S. Dungcam, Raelene D. Sicat and Chrystel Kate A. Malitfrom Don Honorio Ventura State University
INDIVIDUAL CATEGORY AWARDEES
EXCELLENCE AWARD ON SERVICE
Quill and Paper: An Outline Platform to Empower the Youth’s Freedom of Expression – Mebe Mba’a Cedrick Serges Mel (International Relations Institute of Cameroon)
Ending World Hunger One Step At A Time – Christine Infiesto (Far Eastern University)
Covid-19 Community Roaming Testing Mobile – Erika Yvette Nicdao (Don Honorio Ventura State University)
#MoveforMentalHealth: A Multisectoral and Evidence-based Approach in Mitigating the Mental Health during the CoVid-19 Pandemic – Grace Anne Mercado (Don Honorio Ventura State University)
KAAGAPE: A Community Pantry for Katutubo Village – Jean Kyla Villa (Far Eastern University)
Growth and Innovation: Uplifting the Spirit of Responsibility in the New Normal Setting – Renmel Joseph Purisima (Don Honorio Ventura State University)
The two-day forum enabled 100 student achievers from various educational institutions from different countries, including Algeria, East Africa, India, Indonesia, Namibia, Philippines, Uganda, and Zambia, to amplify their voices in raising concerns and ideas that address timely and relevant global issues in education, partnership, sustainability, and leadership sectors. The youth leaders collaborated and utilized their collective aspirations in strengthening partnerships with other change-makers around the world. The participants of the successful ISAF 2021 look forward to a similar activity in the future.