MANILA -- Former Miss Earth Karen Ibasco is among the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) scholars that are featured in a new coffee table book.
Titled "Ripples: Transformations Beyond Science," the book was launched by DOST's Science Education Institute (SEI) in partnership with the Philippine Social Science Council (PSSC) as part of this year's National Science and Technology Week.
It aims to highlight the value of science scholarships and scientific thinking beyond the confines of the laboratory and the academe by featuring DOST scholars in other fields.
"DOST-SEI programs contributed significantly to where the beneficiaries are now, regardless of whether or not they settled within or drifted outside of science. A common thread that weaves and binds their outlook in life is the desire to pay forward and serve the communities where they belong," PSSC executive director Dr. Lourdes Portus said in a statement.
"You could say that the generous assistance given by DOST-SEI 'rippled' into a desire to communicate the importance of science in solving the country's problems," she added.
Ibasco was a DOST scholar before winning the Miss Earth crown in 2017. She received financial assistance under the Accelerated Science and Technology Human Resource Development Program (ASTHRDP), allowing her to finish her MS Medical Physics degree in the University of Santo Tomas.
"Every time someone would ask, and they would be surprised, 'Ah, I didn't know you were a DOST scholar!' And I'd say that I also couldn't believe it before, to be honest, that I was chosen to be one!" the former beauty queen said.
Aside from Ibasco, another DOST scholar featured in the "Ripples" coffee table book is lawyer and former army captain Carol Lim-Gamban. She was a science high school scholar and also benefited from ASTHRDP.
"Maraming, maraming salamat sa DOST… they were the ones [na] instrumental para ma-spark 'yung interest... Magkaroon ng stepping stone, magkaroon ng pag-asa. They give hope," she said.
Aside from giving firsthand testimonials, "Ripples" also aims to look for ways to improve DOST-SEI's scholarship programs in the country.