RIYADH, Saudi Arabia – Nine Filipino students based in Saudi Arabia made it to the top 100 examinees who passed the qualifying test to become scholars of the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) for school year 2012.
The new OWWA scholars from Saudi Arabia are:
1. Audrey Agustin
2. Czarina Ann Baptisma
3. Michael Jason Benedicto
4. Adrian Joseph Borromeo
5. Christian Josh Cruz
6. Abegail Dulay
7. Aeron Lorenz Opalec
8. Javier Anson Santos
9. Chrysvin Vitug
Opalec, a graduating student of the Al Jazeera International School Damman, was among the 50 students in eastern Saudi who took the Education for Development Scholarship Program last September 2011 at the Philippine Embassy in Riyadh.
He was the only one who passed the test.
“Tuwang-tuwa po ako. Ako lang ang pumasa sa scholarship po ng OWWA. Malaking tulong po ito sa pamilya ko dahil malaking tipid po ito sa matrikula sa kolehiyo,” said Opalec.
Opalec will take Mechanical Engineering at the University of the Philippines in Diliman, Quezon City.
“Our school takes pride in the achievement of our student, Aeron Opalec, for passing the OWWA scholarship program which is the second in our school,” said AJISD principal, Lita Rulloda.
This is the second year that an AJISD student passed the OWWA exam. The first one was George De Guzman, who is currently taking electrical engineering at the University of Santo Tomas.
OWWA scholars are provided a maximum of P60,000 per school year with courses leading to a four-to-five year baccalaureate course in any college or university.
“That means kung mura like PUP or UP na mas mura po yung tuition, he keeps the rest of the stipend. Kung naman po medyo mahal, Ateneo, makakatulong ito para pandagdag,” said Welfare Officer Ron Bartolome.
A total of 181 Filipino students from Saudi Arabia took the exams but only 9 made it to the top 100 list. With a report from Florante Catanus, ABS-CBN Middle East News Bureau