September, S&T month once again! Part I – A Public Forum to Usher S & T Month
As the annual science and technology observance zig-zags to the provinces, traditional activities such as parades, search for Mr & Ms S & T, colorful floats with science personalities on board, and of course, the usual beats of drums and blaring bugle sounds will fill the streets. For the more academically and technically-oriented preparations, there will be always exhibits of products of ‘researches’ and posters in regional and provincial, even municipal offices and schools, scientific fora, workshops, symposia, or round-table discussions on current/controversial issues enlightened by researchers and S & T workers. All these are protracted fixtures for the month-long S & T celebration in the provincial setting.
This year, however, (probably the ‘first’) the Media people of Region VIII, especially Tacloban City, have conceived an idea to invite known Filipinos, specifically home-grown researchers and scientists, to grace an open-to-the-public activity under its weekly (Saturday) program titled “Express It At The Park” organized by the Leyte Samar Daily Express publisher Mr. Macy Grafil and ably supported by the active print and broadcast media practitioners in Eastern Visayas.
Having opted to put in the lime-light Eastern Visayan men, or at least those based in the region, is a clear proof of the Media people’s recognition of the important role that science and technology plays in the economic development and progress of the world. Indeed, as we look around things we see, use, consume and live with are products of research and development efforts of scientists. In Japan, one big industrial company recognizes the works of science and success of their products bannered by a statement “Research Makes A Difference” – referring to R & D or for the incumbent top honcho of the Department of Science and Technology – Research, Development and Innovation!
This writer, a Leyteno from Burauen and a practicing marine scientist/biologist, was personally singled out by Mr Grafil as one of the resource persons for this month’s edition of “Express it in the Park” in observance of the S & T Month – specifically on September 22nd, at 7:30-9:00 at the nook of the Leyte Park Hotel. While this writer may have varied S & T things in mind (marine biodiversity, ecosystem, pollution, climate change, economic and tourism potentials etc.) he would most likely delve on his recent contributions to marine science R & D in Eastern Visayas, but specifically on a recently completed National Research Council of the Philippines, DOST, funded Phase I project re “Biodiversity (=Taxonomy) and Potentials of the Marine Algae/Seaweeds of NE Leyte Island, Region VIII” and an earlier UNESCO-Philippines supported project on the “Ethno-Botany of the Sea Vegetables of Biliran Province ….”. Indeed, he (Cordero) looks at this invitation to share R & D results as pay-off time, having ‘absented’ himself from Leyte in search for higher education – learned the basics of science in Manila’s Far Eastern University, honed his research activities in Japan for his M.Sc., D.Sc., and Post-Doctorate under the auspices of the Japanese Ministry of Education Scholarship Program (MOMBUSHO), and rubbed elbows among the ‘better researchers’ in Metro Manila! Hence, after completing his ‘tour of duty’ with the government (repaying the years spent as a scholarship grantee), he has decided to train his attention to studying the lowly marine resource called seaweeds. As to whether this writer was wrong in spending time outside Region VIII, is for us Waray-Warays to decide! He, however, wishes to express heartfelt thanks to Mr Grafil and fellow media believers in science and technology and for the chance to present my report card to fellow eastern bisayans!
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NEXT TOPIC : “September, S & T Month Once Again” Part II – A Contribution on the S & T Celebration for the Youths of Leyte”
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By: Dr. Paciente Cordero, Jr.
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