DLSU welcomes 116 new scholars

MORE than 100 top performers in De La Salle University’s (DLSU) entrance examination for school year 2018-2019 were recently welcomed as scholars of respective grants offered by one of the leading academic institutions in the country.

About 116 students from 44 public and private high schools nationwide were hosted during the “Archer Achievers” Night held at the Henry Sy Sr. hall of the school’s campus in Taft Avenue, Manila on February 9.

This event served as a recognition ceremony of the brightest incoming college students, who bested around 15,000 applicants who took the DLSU College Admission Test (DCAT).

“We gathered them early on in order to introduce them to what being a scholar is all about,” DLSU President Bro. Raymundo Suplido told reporters in a sideline interview.

Aside from the students’ parents or guardians, alumni scholars were also invited to grace the event, according to him.

“In that way, they interact with each other so that the incoming freshmen can see what the Lasallian education will develop in them. So it’s kind of a happy occasion. This is the first time, [but] it will not be the last. They will meet even during the course of their studies,” he said.

The “bright and promising” students will be given full scholarships upon enrollment in DLSU under the Star, Gokongwei, Vaugirard or Saint La Salle programs. These are some of the most comprehensive and competitive free-education grants in the country.  Depending on the type of scholarship, this year’s batch of scholars will receive monthly stipends for board and lodging, meal allowances, iPads and mentorship opportunities with University fellows.

“Actually, these are just the academic scholarships,” Suplido said. “We also give scholarships for culture and the arts [for] those who are in choral and dance [groups]. Then we have leadership scholarships for those in student government or in [other school] activities.”

Separate from the grants provided by private-partner institutions, the DLSU head said they also allocate finances for both privileged and underprivileged yet deserving students to become part of the University system.

“So we set aside scholarship funds, and some of these were donations from alumni and different groups. We build it up and then, that is given to the scholars,” he said.

While the school president declined to divulge the exact figure when pressed on the annual budget, he hinted a significant amount of appropriation.

“You can imagine the tuition in La Salle is probably P75,000 a year times three or four years, so that’s about P225,000 or more a year,” Suplido said. “It’s not true that Lasalle is just for the rich. We try to be accessible to all kinds of students [regardless of economic status].”

Proud of DLSU’s flagship scholarship programs, he said the academic institution strives to make quality education free for more Filipinos across its branches despite being a private school.

“That’s why we decided for all La Salle schools, as much as possible, 20 percent of students are on full scholarship. So that’s one out of five. Our new target is to increase it to 25 percent,” he said. “We want to attract the best students because they are the ones who will benefit from the quality of Lasallian education. We hope they will be the future scientists, industry leaders, researchers, and so on. So the more they are, the better.”

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Roderick L. Abad graduated from Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila, with a degree course in Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication. He has 12 years of journalism experience, starting as a Special Features Writer in a major daily newspaper. In 2006, he moved to the BusinessMirror in the same capacity and, eventually, became a beat reporter. To his credit, he was a finalist in the 2011 Holcim Journalism Awards for Sustainable Construction and the 2013 Lasallian Scholarum Awards. He remains affiliated with the BusinessMirror as a contributor.