PCHRD partners with PSHS for the 2nd installment of the PCHRD-PSHS Science Immersion Program

Seventeen Grade 11 and 12 students from the Philippine Science High School (PSHS) CALABARZON Regional Campus, and one from PSHS Main Campus joined the second Science Immersion Program (SIP) hosted by the Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (PCHRD) through its Research and Development Management Division (RDMD).

PSHS SIP interns with PCHRD RDMD Chief Mr. de Leon

The Council offered a two-week mentorship through an on-site setup, exposing the students to the ongoing health research and initiatives in the country. They were encouraged to pursue future careers in S&T through lectures and facility visits to different PCHRD research partners. To jumpstart the students’ interest in health R&D, the six S&T Fellows from RDMD delivered lectures on formulating a good research proposal during their first week with the Council: stating a good research problem, writing a review of literature, identifying study variables, drafting a conceptual framework, preparing a research design and the methodology, making plans for data collection, analysis and presentation, and finally, putting all these together to create a research proposal. The fellows also gave lectures on the foundational concepts used in their respective programs. They shared their personal S&T journeys and mentored the students in the hopes of inspiring and encouraging them to pave their own path in health research. 

This year, instead of requiring students to choose different tracks, the Council decided to give them a complete look at all the different priority areas of health research, focusing on all ten R&D programs of PCHRD: Omic Technologies for Health, Diagnostics, Tuklas Lunas or Drug Discovery and Development, Functional Foods, Nutrition, and Food Safety, Re-emerging & Emerging Diseases, Disaster Risk Reduction & Climate Change Adaptation in Health, Mental  Health Research and Development, Biomedical Engineering for Health, and Digital and Frontier Technologies for Health. 

SIP interns doing hands-on experiments on kidney tissues at the Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering Laboratories (BiMaTEL) in DLSU
Visit at the Mammalian Cell Culture Laboratory at the Institute of Biology, UP Diliman where the students learned different laboratory techniques
SIP Students at University of Sto. Tomas TOMASInno Center
Demonstration of the lateral flow assay procedure developed through the CRISPR-Dx Project at the Synthetic Microbiology Laboratory in NIMBB, UP Diliman
Visit at the NIH Animal Facility were SIP interns learned about proper animal handling for research
Visit at UPM – SIBOL where SIP interns learned about the use of new technology for surgical procedures

Facility visits with the following PCHRD partner-proponents were done to showcase the different laboratories and projects supported by the Council: Philippine Genome Center (UP Diliman), Synthetic Microbiology Laboratory of the National Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology (UP Diliman), Mammalian Cell Culture Laboratory of the Institute of Biology (UP Diliman), UP–NIH Animal Facility (UP Manila), UP Surgical Innovation and Biotechnology Laboratory (SIBOL, UP Manila), TOMASInno (UST), and Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering Laboratory (DLSU). The students were also able to visit DOST Research and Development Institutes: Food and Nutrition Research Institute (FNRI), and the Industrial Technology Development Institute (ITDI), which hosts the laboratories of the Virology and Vaccine Institute of the Philippines, the Environmental Biotechnology Division, the Food Processing Division – Modular Multi-Industry Innovation Center, and the Halal Food Facility. Lastly, the students were inspired by the nation’s scientist-academicians as they toured the NAST Museum Heritage Center – Order of the National Scientists, and was toured by one of NAST’s Outstanding Young Scientists of 2023, S&T Fellow Dr. Albert Remus R. Rosana at the DOST Wellness Garden.

Visit at one of the VIP Laboratories at DOST – ITDI where the Transmission Electron Microscope is being showcased and how it is used for VIP research
At the Philippine Science Heritage Center where the SIP interns learned about the living National Scientists and their contributions in the country
2023 NAST Outstanding Young Scientist and DOST-PCHRD S&T Fellow, Dr. Rosana, showcasing different medicinal plants in the DOST Wellness Garden

The culminating activity of the students was a capsule proposal defense held on July 17, 2023. S&T Fellows Dr. Phoebe Nicole G. Perez, Dr. Ma. Neda A. Catalma, and Dr. Sarah Jane A. Jimenez served as mentors and panelists to the six groups that presented topics ranging from diagnostics, therapeutics, and medical devices. This was followed by a closing ceremony held at the DOST Executive Lounge last July 18, 2023, graced by PCHRD Executive Director Dr. Jaime C. Montoya, RDMD Chief Mr. Paul Ernest N. de Leon, and RDMD Supervising Science Research Specialist, Ms. Melissa C. Bulao. An inspiring message to the students was delivered by one of the RDMD Project Managers, Mr. Jemuel Joshua Z. Austria, to encourage them to pursue a career in health R&D.

PSHS SIP Interns with their DOST-PCHRD S&T Fellows Panelist (Dr. Jimenez, Dr. Perez, and Dr. Catalma) after a successful presentation of their capsule proposals.

In his opening remarks, Dr. Montoya said that the activities were conceptualized to help the students plan their future research topics and their careers.

“These activities were planned with the PCHRD’s 10 research priority areas in mind, to ensure that the students are exposed to as many inspiring stories and lessons as possible. We certainly hope that we were able to emphasize to our beloved students that health is not merely the absence of disease but a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being,” Dr. Montoya stated.

PSHS SIP Interns and PCHRD SIP Team in the 2023 SIP Closing Ceremony together with PCHRD Executive Director Dr. Jaime Montoya

Mr. de Leon expressed his gratitude to the students for choosing the Council as their training grounds in science, technology, and research in health.

“We, your mentors, and future colleagues in PCHRD are thoroughly impressed and in awe of your dedication and your boundless potential as young scholars and future scientists of our country. We hope you always remember to serve the people with excellence and integrity and to pay it forward by training and helping the next generation,” said the RDMD chief.

As a feedback to the program, a student stated that the activities during the immersion program “fostered learning and overall prioritized the wellbeing of the students while at the same time encouraging curiosity and giving value to services developed by Filipinos for the Filipino people.”

The SIP is a regular summer activity organized by the PSHS that aims to develop science research laboratory skills among their students, as well as help identify and formulate research problems for their future research work. It is an avenue for some students to strengthen their interests and others to rediscover their passion for science and technology.

Follow Us
Contact Us
Saliksik Building, DOST Compound, Gen. Santos Ave., Bicutan Taguig City 1631 Philippines
info@pchrd.dost.gov.ph, feedback@pchrd.dost.gov.ph
Trunk Lines: 8837-2931; 8837-0087; 8837-2924
Direct Lines: 8837-2942; 8837-7536; 8837-0031; 8837-7535; 8837-7534; 8837-7537
Map and Location
Skip to content