S&T regional event moved to August

KORONADAL CITY (MindaNews/16 July) — The regional celebration of the National Science and Technology Week (NSTW) on July 25 to 27 has been reset to August 11 to 12.

Zenaida Laidan, Department of Science and Technology director for Southwestern  Mindanao, said the celebration, with the theme “Nasa Siyensya ang Pag-asa,” will be held at the Phela Grande Convention Center in General Santos City

“The NSTW celebration seeks to encourage people to engage in science and technology-based enterprises and for students to take science courses,” she said.

Laidan said they are also intensifying the promotion of science and technology because of the dearth of experts in these fields not only in the region but throughout the country.

She noted there are only a few scientists in the country, especially in the public sector, because many of them are working abroad due to the lucrative compensation.

Among the highlights of the NSTW is the Regional Invention Contest and Exhibition (RICE), whose deadline for submission of entries was extended to  July 30.

Previous inventors’ contests were done by clusters through Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. This year, the DOST decided to have it regionalized in the hope of a wider reach in promoting science and technology. The winners will join the national contest next year.

During the event, Laidan said they will also promote the potentials of the global halal industry, with the launching of the DOST-12 Halal Certification System and the unveiling of the agency’s halal seal of quality.

Halal refers to food or non-food products permissible under the Islamic faith, but which could also be consumed by non-Muslims.

In a bid to promote a credible halal industry, the DOST-12 has set up a laboratory in Cotabato City that could detect even the minutest contaminants, Laidan said.

A bigger halal laboratory facility is under construction in Koronadal that would be called the Philippine National Halal Laboratory.

For the NSTW celebration, Laidan expressed hopes that the celebration will pave the way for a stronger collaboration between the public and private sectors for the further development of science and technology in the country. (Bong S. Sarmiento/MindaNews)