12 student-researchers receive first Gokongwei Brothers Foundation Young Scientist Award
The students are also the Philippine delegates to the 2019 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair
May 10, 2019

The Gokongwei Brothers Foundation (GBF) honored 12 aspiring scientists with its first Young Scientist Award as they were sent off to represent the Philippines in the prestigious Intel International Science and Engineering Fair.

The award was given during the send off ceremony GBF prepared for the student delegates bound for the competition happening in Phoenix, Arizona from May 12 to 17. ISEF is the world’s largest pre-college science competition where top scientific minds from all over the world gather to present their researches to international judges.

These students were the winners of the Department of Education (DepEd)’ 2019 National Science and Technology Fair (NSTF). GBF supported the students with an all-expense paid trip as part of its partnership with DepEd for the NSTF. 

“This year, we are privileged to have a set of passionate young researchers who accomplished studies and developed products in the spirit of uplifting communities around them. Beyond helping them set foot in ISEF, our bigger aspiration is to inspire other youth, amid hurdles, to pursue their dream in STEM as a way of helping themselves, their community and the country,” said GBF General Manager Lisa Y. Gokongwei-Cheng during the event.

“Seeing the excellence, drive and passion they exhibited in the conduct of the researches, we are proud to bestow the Gokongwei Brothers Foundation Young Scientist Award to these pioneer recipients,” she added.

Aside from the award, the foundation also announced that they will be granting scholarships to the winners to help them pursue a degree in Science, Technology, Mathematics or Engineering at their dream universities in the future.

The Gokongwei Brothers Young Scientist Award is given to students who exhibit excellence in science and technology. It pushes forward GBF’s thrust to advance STEM education in the country. 

Meet the Awardees

Six research projects, conducted by a total of 12 high school students, are heading to the international science fair, representing the Life Science, Physical Science and Robotics and Intelligent Machines categories.

For Life Science research, Maria Isabel Layson of Iloilo National High School studied the antidiabetic properties of aratiles and how it can help produce dietary supplements. Meanwhile, the team of Taguig Science High School’s John Eric Aggarao, Kathleen Chloie Antonio, and Anna Beatriz Suavengco studied the possible organic solution to brown eye spot disease attacking Kapeng Barako plants.

Quezon National High School’s Nathaniel Reyes is the representative for the Physical Science individual category for developing a charcoal made of cornstalk that can treat algae infestation in lakes and fish ponds. For the team project, Angeles City National High School’s Neil David Cayanan, Shaira Gozun, and E’van Relle Tongol will represent the country with their eco-friendly acoustic panels made from local fibers.

Maryjoise Karla Buan, of Pangasinan National High School, created a device that can detect illegal logging activities using Arduino robotics kit for the Robotics and Intelligent Machines category. Also under this category is the team of Alpha Acain, Lester Sabadao, and Lia Denise Tan of Cagayan National High School. They designed a prototype that can assist farmers in drying and storing their rice harvests.

“It is our privilege to be a part of the journey of these amazing researchers. Learning about their story and their aspirations, it is inspiring to know that their youth is not a stumbling block, but actually an enabler to really do what they want to do for their communities. They are a testament to the Filipino youth’s exceptional ingenuity and potential in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM),” said Grace Colet, Gokongwei Brothers Foundation executive director.

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