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PIA Press Release

PMMA to hold info dissemination in Negros Oriental

by Rachelle Nessia

Dumaguete City (20 October) -- The Philippine Merchant Marine Academy (PMMA) is set to hold an information campaign in Oriental Negros to encourage local students to avail of the scholarships offered by one of the most prestigious maritime institutions in the country.

Capt. Richard Yu Ritual, vice president for the Administration, Finance and Training of the PMMA, will arrive in Dumaguete City on October 20 to hold a two-day information dissemination on the courses and trainings offered by PMMA.

Oliver Lemence, Capitol Information Officer, said Capt. Ritual will speak before the Sangguniang Panlalawigan members in a special conference on October 20 at 9:00 a.m.

Capt. Ritual is also scheduled to meet with local media members during a press conference on October 21 at 9:00 a.m.

Lemence said that Governor George P. Arnaiz has earlier sent a letter to PMMA inviting the school’s officials to visit the province and hold an information dissemination about the academy.

“Only a few of the graduates of PMMA come from Oriental Negros. The graduates of the academy are mainly from Luzon, and many of our constituents here are interested to avail of PMMA’s scholarship programs, trainings and expertise,” Lemence quoted the governor as saying.

Formerly known as the Philippine Nautical School, the Philippine Merchant Marine Academy in San Narciso, Zambales is a pillar among maritime institutions in the country, churning out world famous Filipino PMMA cadets.

The Academy aims educate and train midshipmen/women to become qualified and competent merchant marine officers for shipboard and shore-based positions in response to the global requirements of the expanding international maritime industry, as well as to become competent and capable naval officers who can serve as naval and military auxiliaries in times of war and national emergencies, and to contribute to the improvement of maritime education and the pool of ship business managers through graduate school programs.

According to the DOTC website, the Academy is now offering two degree programs: BS in Marine Transportation, major in navigation and seamanship; and BS in Marine Transportation, major in steam engine and electrical engineering.

Since its establishment, the PMMA has been producing efficient and well trained merchant marine officers who could compare with those of the world's best. These graduates spearheaded the Philippines’ efforts in International trade although they could also serve as auxiliary officers capable of servicing naval needs in times of conflict.

Aside from ship officers, the Academy also trains its students in other fields of marine service, like marine surveying, port supervision, shipping office administration, ship management and others.

Lemence said that among the few graduates of the academy who come from Oriental Negros are Jeremiah Tagle, Arvin Hubert Yap and Capt. Allan Tingabngab, all of whom are now working overseas and enjoying the lucrative profession that is the marine merchant industry.

“The governor believes that through this information dissemination, more opportunities will open up for the underprivileged but deserving students in the province and in a way, helping stamp out poverty,” adds Lemence.

In a similar effort, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has vowed to stamp out poverty and give better living conditions to Filipinos in a United Nations campaign dubbed "Stand Up," in which the Philippines is also aiming to set a world record for the most number of people standing up against this social malaise.

Nileema Noble, United Nations resident representative, said the ceremony in Malacañang on Monday signified the country's participation in this worldwide campaign and in the Millenium Development Goals (MDG) with the target for one one million Filipinos from different parts of the country to stand up simultaneously in the fight against poverty.

Cecille Alvarez, Arroyo's adviser on culture, said the participants would stand up for 10 minutes.

She said they expected about 20 million people, mostly students, to join.

But more than the world record, Arroyo said she wanted to break the cycle of leaders making promises without turning them into reality.

"We are aiming for a record for the most number of people who will stand up simultaneously to demand action against poverty,” said Arroyo in Filipino, reading from the “Pledge Against Poverty.”

“Now is the time to end this heartbreaking reality. Let us all stand up to ask for justice and not for pity,” she said. (PIA) [top]

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