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PIA Press Release
2006/10/26

PHS student writes winning essay on youth empowerment

by Eloisa P. Galang

San Fernando, Pampanga (26 October) -- The youth have the power to change the world, and “change will have to begin in ourselves”.

Thus Erin Keshia B. Manlutac, a junior from the Pampanga High School in the City of San Fernando, Pampanga, declared in her winning entry to the on-the-spot writing contest conducted recently by the Commission on Population (POPCOM) in partnership with the Department of Education (DepEd) in Region III.

Manlutac bested seven other third year high school students, all winners in the division level, from various high schools and she will represent the region in the national level of the contest.

In this contest sponsored by the Philippine Center for Population and Development (PPCD), the contestants wrote essays on the topic “Empowering the Youth: How, what and why”.

Among many well-written entries, the board of judges chose Manlutac’s essay as it best captured the essence of the topic and expressed most effectively ideas relevant to it.

Manlutac acknowledges that the misguided youth have brought many problems to society but she also believes that “they can reverse this, that it is never too late to repair the damage wrought by past mistakes”.

Being aware of this and accepting one’s responsibility to himself, his family and society, young people should then start making the right choices in life, the high school junior said.

The contestants, all promising campus writers, identified common recipes for youth empowerment and they include the following:

  • Make the best of the gift of education.
  • Stay away from vices such as drugs, liquor, negative influences; stay healthy, instead.
  • Get involved in worthwhile activities in the family, school and community.

These nuggets of wisdom from the youth impressed the judges namely Assistant Regional Director Lynette Y. Bautista of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), City Health Officer of San Fernando Dr. Benito F. Arca, and Eloisa P. Galang of the Philippine Information Agency, Pampanga Office.

They urged the contestants to continue honing their talents and more importantly to live the very contents of their essays, to put into action their written formula for youth empowerment towards nation building.

“If you can do this, you can contribute significantly to your family and society and thus prove beyond doubt that youth is indeed the hope of the country,” the judges collectively advised the contestants.

With the positive turn out of the contest, the POPCOM headed by Regional Director Rosa R. Fortaleza and DepEd supervisors look forward to similar undertakings in the future.

Manlutac, the two other winners namely Dianne Lyneth C. Alavado, second placer, from Lamao National High School (Bataan), Jaimee Nichole C. Castillo, third placer, from Tomas del Rosario College, Balanga City, Bataan, received cash prizes and certificates of recognition while the five other contestants received consolation prizes and certificates of participation. (PIA-Pampanga) [top]

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