As the world continues to rapidly shift towards the fourth industrial revolution, it is more important than ever that Filipino students are equipped with the necessary tools and skills to help them succeed in the future.
For 3M Philippines and Mano Amiga, this means opening opportunities and providing access to Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) for Filipino students across the country. The global leader in science-based solutions partnered with the non-profit organization for holistic and accessible education to host Full STEM Ahead: A Virtual Summit and Career Mentorship Talk. The virtual summit gathered over 200 participants from across the country, who were able to listen to and learn from experienced STEM professionals speak about their journey and pique interest in pursuing a career in STEM.
“The importance of utilizing science-based solutions in addressing global challenges is more important than ever, which is why we must ensure that the youth have the fundamentals and the interest in the different fields of STEM,” said 3M Philippines Country Leader Reggie Pulumbarit. “At 3M Philippines, we actively participate in ensuring that all Filipino students have access to the right tools, resources, and education to help them succeed. We are committed to cultivating a culture where science is better understood and appreciated by all.”
“For our students, this Full STEM Ahead sessions is just the beginning of their STEM journey. It is important for them to develop their interest in the field and have this interest nurtured by educators,” said Lynn Pinugu, Co-Founder of Mano Amiga Philippines. “As digital natives, students today must harness the power of tech and combine it with an inquisitive mind and the rigor of research, applying knowledge to the real world and unlocking their potential.”
The virtual summit’s main event was the panel discussion with experts from different fields and organizations. The discussion featured Numberbender founder Dr. Peter Esperanza, licensed civil engineer Dr. Marla Redillas, Jun Barnes, Health Care Professional Services, 3M Philippines, and Iris Alonso of ARK, who all gave helpful tips on how students can carefully choose and pursue their STEM Careers.
Throughout the highly engaging discussion, the speakers gave insights and advice based on their own experiences. Participants were encouraged to choose a course that they are truly interested in, and to not put too much pressure on themselves. As the participants are at a critical and fundamental juncture of their lives, speakers made sure to emphasize the importance of setting personal goals, and establishing a support system they can rely on.
The speakers also helped the students understand that their STEM journey is not without setbacks, and that the path they take isn’t set in stone—they may end up in different fields from what was initially planned and they will make mistakes along the way, but these challenges and failures are what will ultimately help them learn, grow, and find their place in the industry. At the end of the day, what’s most important is that they put effort into doing their best and trying different things—because that’s what being a young student is all about.
“Whatever path you find yourself on, put your heart and soul into it—you won’t regret it,” said 3M Professional Service and microbiologist Jun Barnes, who ended up on another path than he had planned. “You might not end up in the field you had initially chosen, but do your best all the same, and prepare yourself. That is what’s so great about this virtual summit hosted by 3M and Mano Amiga—young students are able to better equip themselves for their future, and us speakers are able to help inspire their journey.”
The panel discussion was followed by the career mentoring session, where the participants had the chance to have in-depth and interactive discussions with reputable STEM professionals. The line-up of esteemed guest mentors included 3M professional engineers Melody Tria, Patricia Dizon and Jonathan Borromeo. The mentoring session was divided into several breakout rooms, which gave ample time for students to voice their questions, and speakers to address their concerns in a more personal setting. Speakers were able to share their own experiences in their respective fields, provide tips on how students can take their first steps into their STEM journey, as well as give them clarity on what they can do today in order to prepare them for a future career in STEM.
Full STEM Ahead served as an inspiring gathering of the different sectors within the STEM community, from aspiring students to STEM veterans. The virtual summit was a culmination of the ever-growing partnership between 3M Philippines and Mano Amiga who, through collaboration, are able to reach a wider audience and strengthen the Filipino youth’s relationship with and interest in STEM. 3M Philippines’ partnership with Mano Amiga Philippines is proof of their commitment to making STEM resources accessible to Filipino students across the country.