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Graduate scholarship slots provided by the Department of Science and Technology - Science Education Institute (DOST-SEI) are expected to increase next year. 

This, as the Accelerated Science and Technology Human Resources Development Program – Science Education Consortium (ASTHRDP-SEC) welcomes universities in Luzon offering master’s and doctoral programs in Science and Mathematics Education (SME). 

During the 2014 National Science and Technology Week celebration, a Memorandum of Understanding among the member universities of the ASTHRDP-SEC was signed to officially include Ateneo de Manila University, Bicol University, Central Luzon State University, De La Salle University, Mariano Marcos State University and Philippine Normal University in the National Consortium in Graduate Science and Mathematics Education, joining the original members - West Visayas State University, University of San Carlos, Western Mindanao State University, and Mindanao State University – Marawi City. 

The expansion of the consortium signals more graduate scholarship slots in SME courses in the coming years.

DOST Undersecretary Fortunato de la Peña initiated the said expansion and signed in behalf of SEI. The Presidents of the 10 universities also signed the MOU. 

In a statement, SEI Director Dr. Josette Biyo commended the new member-universities’ pledge in helping develop a pool of world-class experts in science and mathematics education. 

“We are grateful for these new member-universities’ commitment to share their resources in making sure that we produce quality graduates in master’s and doctoral programs and in addressing defined needs in SME for developing national competitiveness. All these, we achieve with the help of the national consortium,” said Biyo. 

She highlighted that the expanded scholarship shall also allow strengthening of research and development (R&D) in the country, particularly, in SME. 

“The whole science community agrees that R&D remains to be the most critical driver of development. Through the expansion of the ASTHRDP-SEC, we are confident that we are sustaining and igniting even more the culture of R&D in the country among science and math teachers. We shall remain in the lead role in promoting R&D and innovation among the members of this critical sector of the S&T human resources as our primary strategy to contribute in nation building,” Biyo remarked. 

Meanwhile, DOST-SEI said that graduate scholarship slots shall be announced in June of 2015.