Behind the thousands of scholars vying and enjoying scholarship from the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) is the same role model inspiring them—their teacher.

This DOST scholar tells her story of how her teachers have helped her pursue her dreams; how she always strives for greatness and believes in her fullest potential because of them.

Mea Jane has faced and conquered many challenges in her life but, her dream of becoming a licensed agricultural engineer and getting her family out of poverty push her to always find ways to make them possible.

Her family struggled to send her to school, so she managed on so little allowance. She borrowed from her friends or did other students’ projects to pay for her expenses at school. So, she was grateful when her former teachers offered to support her until she could finish senior high school.

Sa paghahangad na makapag-aral pa, sa tulong ng datihan kong mga guro, nakapag-aral po akong muli sa Alcantara National High School bilang Senior High student (In my desire to further my studies and with the help of my former teachers, I was able to enroll again at the Alcantara National High School as a senior high student),” shared Mea Jane.

During those years, she had to stay in their house and help with the household chores to which she told us that it was not an easy feat due to the plenty of adjustments needed while living in a different house.

However, she was determined to continue aiming for her dreams.

By the time she was in 12th grade, her adviser encouraged her and her classmates to pursue higher education through the DOST scholarship program and was truly dedicated to helping them achieve it.

Ang mabait po na guro naming si Ma’am Wawie Mindoro ang nagtulak sa’min na makumpleto at makapagpasa ng mga requirements para sa scholarship maging hanggang sa pagrereview at pagkuha ng pagsusulit (Our good teacher, Ma’am Wawie Mindoro, was the one who pushed us to complete our requirements for the scholarship, guided us during the review, and supported us during the examination),” she said.

Ms. Mindoro teaches science and other STEM-related subjects at the Alcantara National High School. Aside from being a teacher, she is keen to encourage and enable her students to explore the field further by actively mentoring them for science fairs and research competitions as well as helping them secure a scholarship to advance their studies.

“DOST is known to aid students who are underprivileged but are outstanding in school. Thus, I motivated my students to grab the opportunity,” Mindoro said. “I told them the possibilities of being a scholar — allowance is a bonus, of course—and how life-changing it can be by recounting the stories of my students who are DOST scholars too.”

She recounted that the graduating students in their school were armed with supportive teachers throughout their journey by giving them reviewers for their scholarship examination. This immense support paved the way for her to finally receive the scholarship.

“Isang malaking kasiyahan ang makita ang pangalan mong napabibilang sa mga pasado at nabigyan ng pagkakataong maging DOST Scholar (It is an overwhelming joy to see your name included in the list of passers and be given a chance to be a DOST scholar),” she mused.

Now, she is in her second year of pursuing a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree in Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering.

Under the RA 7687, she receives a monthly stipend of Php 7,000 in addition to the yearly allowance of Php 40,000 for tuition and other school fees, and a yearly allowance of Php 10,000 for books. She is also provided with a one-time uniform allowance and will enjoy a one-time graduation allowance.

“Sa katulad kong simpleng nangangarap na makapagtapos ng pag-aaral, sa pamamagitan ng tulong-pinansyal ng DOST Scholarship, hindi naging imposible ito (For like me who simply dreams of completing my studies, because of DOST scholarship, it is now possible),” she said.

She added that she is beyond thankful to the DOST for allowing her to pursue her academic goal and will surely persevere in her remaining years in college.

“Hindi ko po makalilimutan ang mga taong buong pusong tumulong sa’kin kaya ninanais kong masuklian ang mga kabutihang kanilang ginawa, kahit ang ilan ay hindi naghangad ng kapalit (I will never forget the people who are wholeheartedly supporting me so I want to pay their kindness back despite them not wanting for anything in return),” she said referring to all the people behind her journey to success, especially her teachers.