ZAMBOANGA CITY – “By April, the students shall have known if they are awarded the scholarship or not; and by May, we can start paying our scholars to avoid any delays in their enrollment,” Commission on Higher Education-9 (CHED) Regional Director Emmylou B. Yanga said, adding that her office will be attending to all scholarship applications starting Feb. 1 to March 31, 2013.
This adjustment is in accordance with CHED Memorandum Order no. 56, series of 2012 which revises the Implementing Guidelines for the Student Financial Assistance Programs (StuFAPs).
“We want to inform our public about CMO no. 56 so that they will be aware of the revisions in the application for financial assistance since we have moved the application period earlier”, Dir. Yanga said.
CMO no. 56 aims to rationalize the administration and implementation of CHED StuFAPs by selecting the poor and deserving scholars or grantees; ensure that scholars/grantees are enrolled in duly authorized higher education institutions and in identified priority programs; and to ascertain that the StuFAPs are properly administered and implemented.
“Unlike before, we are now requiring our student applicants to submit weighted average grade from their third year and their fourth year grades from first to third grading periods. We will get 50% from their third year grade and another 50% from their fourth year grades,” Yanga explained.
The grades, according to Yanga, will determine which scholarship program the applicants can avail.
CHED’s scholarship has two categories: the Full Merit and the Half Merit.
Director Yanga said students with weighted average of at least 90% in their 3rd year, and 90% in the first three grading periods of their 4th year can qualify for Full Merit Scholarship, while students with at least 85% on both 3rd year and the first three grading periods in fourth year can qualify for the half merit scholarship.
Other qualification requirements are: Student applicants should also be Filipino citizens and of good moral character; must not be more than 30 years old at the time of application; must be high school graduates or candidates for graduation; parents’ or guardians’ combined annual income must not exceed P300,000.00. Those who are exempted from income tax should present a certificate of Tax Exemption from the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR); and for OFWs and sea farers, a latest copy of contract or proof of income is required. Finally, applicants must not be recipients of any government scholarship and financial assistance.
Aside from the scholarship program, CHED is also offering Grants-in-Aid and the Study Now Pay Later Program.
The grants include the Tulong-Dunong (TD) which requires 3rd year grade of 80% and 80% of the first three grading periods in 4th year. This grant can be availed of by students who are differently-able (persons with disabilities), solo parents or dependent of solo parents, members of cultural minorities, members of hill tribe and senior citizens, if qualified.
Other grants are the Department of National Defense (DND)-CHED-PASUC study grant intended for qualified dependents of military personnel; the Office of the Presidential Assistant for Peace Process (OPAPP)-CHED study grant for amnestied former rebels and individual member of existing groups where the government has existing peace agreements; CHED Special Study Grant Program for Congressional Districts, and the CHED Senate Study Grant Program (CSSGP).
The student applicants for the scholarship programs (Full and Half Merit), SNPL, Grants-in-Aid and Tulong-Dunong shall submit to CHED Regional Office the accomplished CHED StuFAPs application form with the above mentioned requirements while for CSSGP, DND, OPAPP shall apply directly to the office/agency concerned.
CHED has also identified priority courses under their student financial assistance programs namely Information Technology which include Information Technology and computer science, multimedia, animation, programming, and information system management; Agriculture and related fields like agro-forestry, veterinary medicine, agricultural engineering, agribusiness/management, agricultural entrepreneurship, agricultural technology, and fisheries; Teacher Education major in Math, Science, Physics, Chemistry, Reading, English, Educational Media/Technology, and Special Education (SPED); Science and Mathematics specifically B.S. Math, B.S. Physics, and B.S. Science.
Engineering courses on mechanical, electronics, communication, metallurgical/mining, computer, biomedical, chemical, geodetic, electrical, meteorological, mining and geological fields; Health Sciences to include Pharmacy, Radio Technology, and Medical Technology; Arts and Humanities; Atmospheric Sciences and Environmental Science.
Full Merit Scholars are entitled P15,000 per semester for the whole duration of the course, while half merit scholars will receive P7,500.00 per semester provided they maintain the general weighted average required.
Grantees, on the other hand, are entitled P2,500 to P6,000 per semester depending on the program applied, while the Study Now pay Later Plan will entitle a student P7,500 per semester. Grantees, however, should maintain passing grades or else the assistance will be terminated.