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Science, Technology & Society

Sir Benjamin Vallejo

Reaction on the Public Lecture of the Department of Science & Technology

(DOST) Secretary
Last September 19, 2016, DOST Secretary Fortunato Dela Pea gave a public
lecture regarding the ongoing and future plans in the field of science and technology (S
& T). Apparently, the secretary reported that in the last cabinet meeting, President
Duterte has given no direct orders regarding the fate of S and T. Hence, Sec. Dela Pea
decided to briefly discussed the 10-point agenda of the President, followed by the
current projects of DOST.
Firsthand, Secretary gave the news that two (2) new campus of Philippine
Science High School were inaugurated. He discussed projects from the previous
administration being continued such as advances on pharmaceuticals, weather
satellites and innovations in food processing. Though the current administration has no
concrete plan for S & T yet, at least there are already projects from which they can
continue. As a food technologist, I am pleased that the government launched the food
innovation facilities (FIC) in various parts of the country to help small and medium scale
enterprises. Furthermore, new equipment in these facilities would pave the way for
product development. Food products can be developed in order to address issues such
as micronutrient deficiencies, disaster food and other pressing concerns in our society.
Given that each region was given an innovation facility, I just hope that it would be
manage efficiently to maximize learning and production.
Even though there was good news presented, I was still incompletely happy at
the end of this public lecture. One of the things that made me disappointed is the news
about the train visible along the University Avenue. As you can see, I was still a
freshman student when the said project was commenced. Five years later, it saddened
me when DOST secretary admitted that there is yet no clear things on what to do with
the said train after it has been subjected to pilot testing. The train and the rails,
probably costing more than a million pesos, have been stagnant for the past few years.
Secretary Dela Pea admitted that incoordination played a major role on the
disappointing result of the project. I hope that circumstances like this could be
prevented in the future. It does not only waste the resources we have but it also
diminishes the chance of using the funds for better and well-planned projects.

Science and technology will remain unnoticed unless the current administration
finally understands the role played by scientists for the improvement of the peoples
lives. This is true for the other sectors of the society. I am hoping our President
understands that other than drugs and criminality, there are other problems facing our
beloved Philippines. At the same time, students pursuing science courses must also
understand the same. As the reactor in the program pointed out, students are being
raised and boxed on the thought of earning money. We can never see the possibilities of
how we can change society for the better because we were too focused on our