By Le Grande Dolino
SMC students bag the championship and second runner-up awards in the recently concluded National Mining, Metallurgical, and Materials Engineering Summit held online last March 26 to 28, 2021.
The event consisted of a qualifying quiz bee round which led to the Idea Challenge, where groups proposed solutions to "medical waste management and valorization" in the Philippines.
Team L composed of Carlos Gabriel Araniego (Grade 12), Maria Leianna Yutig (Grade 11) and Crispino Alvarado III (Grade 10) under Engr. Ace Lonzaga (coach) emerged as champion. Team K composed of Tom Manuel Piccio (Grade 12), Warren Dominic Beltran (Grade 11), and Mary Grace Espino (Grade 10) under Ms. Jihan Codizar (coach) bagged the second runner-up prize as well as the Best in Quiz Bee award.
The event was organized by the UP Mining, Metallurgical, and Materials Engineering Association Incorporated.
by Sheila Allong
Proving that PhiSciers are not just academically excellent but are also multi-talented in different abilities and skills, a Philippine Science High School Southern Mindanao Campus scholar emerged as the CHAMPION in the region-wide Ateneo de Davao University- Schools of Engineering (ADDU-SEA) Fair 2021 Sketch Wars Event held online last March 17, 2021.
Grade 12-Kelvin student Eliza Annet B. Juanitez competed virtually against other high school students from 9 different schools all over Mindanao in a challenge wherein they were given the subject “Royal Ontario Museum in Canada” on the spot for which they had to use as a guide for sketching depending on their desired perspective. They were to sketch the subject using monochrome (black and white format) for two (2) hours only. The sketch war event was part of the week-long (March 15-19, 2021) online ADDU-SEA Fair.
As relayed by the coach, Engr. Michael V. Nalitan, “I am very proud of Eliza not only because of her exceptional drawing skills but also because she remained focused and tenacious despite the event being held in time for the examination week in Pisay-SMC.”
As instructed by the Campus Director Jonald P. Fenecios, the good news was announced during the virtual flag ceremony of the PSHS-SMC faculty and staff last March 29, 2021 and is posted in the school’s official Facebook Page - https://www.facebook.com/PisaySMC
What is research for if not to find a technical solution to a problem and develop something useful which can be implemented for the benefit of mankind?
This mantra was precisely the driving force behind all the research endeavors and research-related coaching activities of one of the “just starting out” yet highly admired teachers of Philippine Science High School Southern Mindanao Campus, Ms. Jessa Mae A. Villanueva.
In fact, when asked as to what was her and her co-author’s inspiration in coming up with the research entitled Antimicrobial Property of Sodium Alginate/TiO2 Nanocomposite Film, she said that, “One time, we visited the farmers in Calinan and learned that their persistent problem is on how to prolong the shelf life of their crops. This was the very reason why we conducted this research to look for solutions that could help farmers.”
Basically, the study shows that Sodium Alginate/TiO2 composite films can indeed be used in the food industry as an antibacterial film. Given its many possible uses in agriculture and food industry, the study was thereby acknowledged and peer-reviewed by the Philippine Journal of Science and published last September 2018. Here’s the link: https://philjournalsci.dost.gov.ph/78-vol-147-no-3-september-2018/818-antimicrobial-property-of-sodium-alginate-tio2-nanocomposite-film
Ms. Villanueva, who has been a recipient of a number of research-related awards such as second place in the DOST, 6th Health Research & Development Expo and second place in poster presentation in the 11th PNHRS Week, shared that the current innovations in food packaging systems, including the use of polymers, hydrogels and nanoparticles to increase the shelf life of food has really been her main research interest.
With her passion and love for research, it is not a wonder that even her research advisees/students in the campus were award-winners too in different research-related contests here and abroad such as the Malaysian International Young Inventors Olympiad 2018, Project BT 2018, Restoration Exology Society of the Philippines Saving the Cordilleras Ecosystem Network (RESPhil-SCENE), Inc. 8th National Conference, and Global youth Science and Technology Bowl 2020, among others.
As a message to everyone, Ms. Jessa Villanueva has this to say: “Go out and look for research problems that are practical. Those that can actually help the society.”
About the Published Faculty:
Ms. Jessa Mae A. Villanueva finished BS Food Technology degree at the University of the Philippines Mindanao and is currently taking up MS Food Science at the same institution. For this school year 2020-2021, she is teaching Integrated Science II to Grade 8 Rosal students, serving as Research 1 Teacher/Adviser (Materials Science) and also as Research I Unit Head, and at the same time, as Research 3 Teacher/Adviser, while being the Homeroom Adviser of Grade 8 Rosal.
“Research should be pursued to benefit humanity.”
This was the answer of Mr. Michael A. Casas, one of our faculty at PSHS SMC when asked about his philosophy in conducting research. He added that as a research adviser, he mentors his students to conduct researches that will have a positive impact to communities.
As an educator, Mr. Casas was involved in funded research projects on water quality, environmental science, natural products, and analytical chemistry collaborating with experts in the field.
His research project with Dr. Anthony C. Sales, Ms. Ludivina M. Porticos, Ms. Hydie R. Maspiñas, Mr. Porferio R. Jabla and Ms. Ma. Annabelle S. Jabla entitled “Assessment of the Extent of Implementation of Standards and Procedures for Water Safety in the Philippines” was published in BMJ Open, an online, open access journal.
The research looks into the extent of implementation of the water safety plans among drinking water providers in the Philippines.
The research can be accessed through the following link: https://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/5/Suppl_1/bmjopen-2015-forum2015abstracts.74.abstract
Mr. Casas shared that he targets to publish more researches and the researches of his students in support of the vision of the Philippine Science High School Southern Mindanao Campus Director Dr. Jonald Fenecios to strengthen the research and publication culture of PSHS SMC.
About the Published Faculty:
Mr. Michael A. Casas is an alumnus (Batch 2006) of PSHS SMC. He obtained his Bachelor’s Degree in Chemistry from Ateneo de Davao University and conducted his research on natural products under Dr. Lourdes Simpol. His undergraduate research won numerous awards including the prestigious BPI-DOST Science Award in 2010 and emerged as the 2nd-runner-up for the Best Project of the Year competition. He finished his Master’s Degree in Chemistry at Ateneo de Davao University in 2016 and conducted his research on chromatography and separation science under Dr. Agnes T. Aranas. He was also able to work on researches funded by the Department of Science and Technology. Mr. Casas is currently teaching Chemistry and Research, serves as the coordinator of the Innovation and Technology Support Office and serves as the Assistant CID Chief of the Natural Science and Research Department of PSHS SMC.
SMC Students' Research Found as Among Most Promising, Innovative Project By National Group of Chem Students
Crude extract of sweet potato leaves as intelligent food packaging?
The study of Grade 12 research team composed of Leener Kate B. Alucilja, Kaye Richelle A. Duarte, and Tom Manuel O. Piccio entitled “𝘊𝘳𝘶𝘥𝘦 𝘌𝘹𝘵𝘳𝘢𝘤𝘵 𝘰𝘧 𝘗𝘶𝘳𝘱𝘭𝘦 𝘐𝘱𝘰𝘮𝘰𝘦𝘢 𝘣𝘢𝘵𝘢𝘵𝘢𝘴 (𝘚𝘸𝘦𝘦𝘵 𝘗𝘰𝘵𝘢𝘵𝘰) 𝘓𝘦𝘢𝘷𝘦𝘴 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘚𝘵𝘦𝘮 𝘐𝘯𝘤𝘰𝘳𝘱𝘰𝘳𝘢𝘵𝘦𝘥 𝘸𝘪𝘵𝘩 𝘊𝘩𝘪𝘵𝘰𝘴𝘢𝘯 𝘢𝘴 𝘐𝘯𝘵𝘦𝘭𝘭𝘪𝘨𝘦𝘯𝘵 𝘍𝘰𝘰𝘥 𝘗𝘢𝘤𝘬𝘢𝘨𝘪𝘯𝘨” caught the attention of the panelists during the online oral defense and eventually made the team garner the third place during the PACSiyensya (Science Investigatory Project Competition) held online on February 20, 2021.
PACSiyensya, formerly known as IP Contest, is one of the main events of the Junior Chemistry Congress 2021 organized by the Philippine Association of Chemistry Students, Inc. (PACS, Inc.).
The whole Pisay SMC community is very jubilant of this recognition. The Campus Director, Mr. Jonald Fenecios himself proudly said, “The school administration is always at your back and is proud of you dear scholars for all of your accomplishments, most especially when it comes to research and scientific innovations. Great job!”
Bagwis-Agham writer and grade 10 student Jucille Kate Delos Santos emerged as champion in the Science News Writing (Filipino) category and Sci-Wings journalist and also grade 10 student Sophia Dominique Ann Samson won third place in the Science Feature Writing (English) category during the AURUM ONLINE PRESS CONFERENCE held online last February 17, 2021.
This online press conference with the theme “F𝚒𝚡𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝙲𝚘𝚖𝚖𝚜: 𝙿𝚛𝚘𝚖𝚘𝚝𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚂𝚌𝚒𝚎𝚗𝚌𝚎 𝙹𝚘𝚞𝚛𝚗𝚊𝚕𝚒𝚜𝚖 𝙰𝚖𝚘𝚗𝚐 𝚄𝚜" was organized by the UP Biochemistry Society with the advocacy of making science journalism more fun and accessible for everyone.
The school paper advisers and coaches Mr. Johnel Lumacao and Ms. Sheila Allong were very proud of how the students excelled in the contest despite the inconvenient and challenging new normal setup of having to do the training and practice virtually.
Included in this post were the actual entries of the students generously uploaded by the organizers in their Facebook page.