CULTURAL POTPOURRI| Pioneering PSHS Grads Celebrate 25 Years

IT WAS on March 26, 1992, when the first exceptional graduates of the Philippine Science High School (PSHS)– Mindanao Campus left the comforts of their high school life to realize their full potential as college students.  The PSHSpioneers, comprised of fifty young adults from all over the Mindanao region, had just spent four years of their early teenage life being schooled in the best scientific method, trained in critical and rational thinking, and undergoing a rigorous four-year science-based curriculum. PSHS-Mindanao was the first ever campus established outside Metro Manila. Since then, many PSHS campuses have been established and that  includes several in Mindanao.

CLASS 1994 wins for most represented class aside from the Pioneers

CLASS 1994 wins for most represented class aside from the Pioneers

      The Davao City campus which has its location in Tugbok, was later renamed Philippine Science High School – Southern Mindanao Campus (PSHS-SMC).  It enabled the best of Southern Mindanao’s intelligent youth to be offered an exemplary scientific education that is humanistic in spirit, global in perspective and patriotic in orientation.

“The pioneers have, since then, gone their different ways. Some have settled in foreign lands.Yes, there are doctors, entrepreneurs, artists, chemists, healthcare providers, biologists, pharmacists, teachers, homemakers, mathematicians, geologists, political leaders in our batch. Although we differ from each other, we are all friends, husbands, wives, mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters.   We have always considered ourselves a family. We have gone exploring through the crests and troughs of life, through successes and failures, through good times and bad. Yet our bond remains strong through time and distance.It took us 25 years of exploration to finally gather and be at home in our beloved city,” expressed the superwoman, Cherry Banquil Al-ag.

CLINT Navales (center) with 2018 alumni homecoming hosts (class 93)

CLINT Navales (center) with 2018 alumni homecoming hosts (class 93)

The long journey taken by the PSHS-SMC pioneers was paved with opportunities that so encouraged them to finally give back to their dear PSHS-SMC and to the community in Tugbok, Davao City. The group hosted a Medical Mission dubbed as “Kalusugan: Ang Tunay na Yaman; Alagang Todo Bigay Para Kay Nanay at Tatay”.

The event which was held on December 8, 2017, was a joint project undertaken bythe pioneers and the PSHS-SMC Gender and Development Committee. The project was made possible through the combined efforts of the alumni and generous sponsors who generously gave their time and resources to express their love and care to the community.

SHERYLYN Barcenas and Cherry Al-ag overall co-chairs of the 1st grand alumni homecoming

SHERYLYN Barcenas and Cherry Al-ag overall co-chairs of the 1st grand alumni homecoming

 Dr. Winston Barcenas (’92), Dr. Faith Tulio Lagat (’92), Dr. Vanina Htun Javier (’94), Dr. Christine Calolot (’98) and Dr. Jun Valera (’98) volunteered their time and expertise to provide free medical services to 105 patients who were mostly senior citizens.  The patients were provided with free laboratory tests such as serum FBS, total cholesterol, creatinine, CBC and urinalysis. Mobile imaging facilities were available to provide ECG, chest x-ray and abdominal ultrasound tests. Patients were also given free medical and eye exams, medicines, eyeglasses and food.

“To give back to our dear PSHS-SMC, we established The Pioneers Class of ’92 Research Grant as an annual program with the purpose of providing financial assistance to PSHS-SMC students conducting research work. The main goal of the program is to help develop high quality research and promote the culture of science. Every year, a PhP15,000 research grant will be awarded to a research proposal among Grade 11 students,” informed Cherry Banquil Al-ag.

PIONEERS with former teachers and staff

PIONEERS with former teachers and staff

Last December 29, 2017, The Pioneers, of Philippine Science Highschool – Southern Mindanao Campus, hosted the first Grand Alumni Homecoming to celebrate their 25th year anniversary. About 250 alumni, PSHS-SMC faculty, staff and guests gathered to celebrate this milestone with a Neon Party at SMX Convention Center Davao, SM Lanang Premiere in Davao City. To celebrate the Pioneers, eMari Productions created a video of the alumni. Tributes were given to the faculty and staff from 1988-1992.  The celebration included a recognition of the nominees for “Outstanding Alumni” from the class of 1992 whichincludes Carlos Ang, Winston Barcenas, Caroline Jaraula, Lyre Espada Murao, Clint Navales and Lyann Ursos. The winner will be announced during the school’s 30th Foundation Day Anniversary in February 2018. A turnover of hosting duties for the 2018 Grand Alumni Homecoming was given to the class of 1993 (Gamegods) who will celebrate their 25th year anniversary in 2018.

CO chair Cherry Banquil Al-ag with ladies from class 95

CO chair Cherry Banquil Al-ag with ladies from class 95

“Indeed, it was an amazing night which took 25 years in the making. We remembered, reconnected and reaffirmed the bond that binds us through time and distance. As we depart from our reunion and return to our own realities, we are reassured by our common history, made rich by our individual stories.We look forward to the next 25 years with fervor and great anticipation,” emotionally stated Cherry Banquil Al-ag.

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