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Metrobank Foundation and GT Foundation Honor 31 Scholar Graduates

The 23rd celebration of the annual Graduates’ Forum was held on July 28, 2023 at the Manila Doctors Hospital. A total of 31 scholars representing nine (9) academic partners finished their respective undergraduate degrees. Of the nine scholars, 11 finished with Latin Honors—3 magna cum laude and 8 cum laude.

Metrobank Foundation, Inc. (MBFI) and GT Foundation, Inc. (GTFI) jointly recognized Batch 2023 scholar-graduates during the 23rd Graduates’ Forum on July 28, 2023.

Serving as an event to honor the hard work of their scholars, MBFI and GTFI prepared activities that allowed them to reflect upon their undergraduate journey, and to show appreciation to their benefactors. Each of the graduate-scholars were called one-by-one on stage to give them a celebratory moment of success, and select representatives gave messages to the attendees on behalf of their batch.

Offering Service and Gratitude

Aside from academic excellence, the scholars are taught by the framework called “Pay-it-forward Service to the 4Cs” serving as their guide in jumpstarting their professional careers. Emphasizing their significant role as Filipino youth taking part in nation-building, the 4Cs refers to Creator, Clan, Community and Country—Gratitude to the Creator by striving for a life blessed with faith; gratitude to their Clans serving as their solid support systems; giving back to Communities through volunteer work and community programs; and advancement of our Country by becoming productive professionals.

“How do we keep moving forward if we are already here at the end – here at your graduation? Moving forward is not the only way to go, as the direction you will take will depend on your life’s purpose and choices from here on. (…) You have the choice to empower and capacitate others to move as well—to move in their own direction and to move mountains in service of our country” shared MBFI president Aniceto Sobrepeña.

Scholars shared their stories and life journeys, and recalled the people who helped them along the way. They outlined their future plans on vision boards to guide their next steps in life.

During the “Where Youthful Energy meets Lifelong Experience” session, executives from the Metrobank Group shared advice to the new graduates related to the professional world.

This year, 31 scholars finished their undergraduate courses from nine partner universities namely: Ateneo de Zamboanga University; Central Philippine University; Manila Tytana Colleges; National University – Manila; Saint Louis University; Technological Institute of the Philippines; University of San Carlos; University of Santo Tomas; and University of the Philippines-Diliman. Their bachelor’s degree ranges from agriculture and biosystems, architecture, engineering, computer science, to nursing.

They are recipients of the GTFI – Youth for Excellence and Service II (YES) and MBFI – Assistance for the Completion of College Education for Superior Students III (ACCESS) scholarship programs.

Out of the 31 scholars, 11 were Latin honorees—three (3) magna cum laude and eight (8) cum laude. They were conferred with Metrobank medals and certificates of academic excellence. They also received cash incentives: P10,000 (magna cum laude) and P5,000 (cum laude), respectively.

One of the two students who spoke on behalf of the graduates, Lycel Pineda, Bachelor of Science in Architecture, magna cum laude from the University of the Philippines, expressed gratitude for the help they received and described the beauty and ripple effect of investing in people. “The beauty of paying it forward stands in its simplicity. Imagine a world where every person committed to paying it forward, where small acts of kindness ripple through society, touching the hearts of countless people and making their dreams come true. Isn’t it great,” she said. Pineda is set to apply for an internship in adherence to the requirements of the architecture licensure exam for her to become a licensed architect.

Launch of a Book that features Successful Scholars

Highlighting the impact of the scholarship in people’s lives, in the same day, MBFI launched their first-ever publication featuring the success stories of outstanding scholars, titled ‘Overcoming Adversity and Gaining Momentum’. The book was said to be a “collection of remarkable tales of courage, service, and achievement of ten unique people who triumphed over adversity but had a shared purpose of service beyond self.”

The ten stories include distinct accomplishments in both personal and professional undertakings. These include an engineer who heeded God’s calling to be a pastor, a multi-awarded academician-researcher recognized for his maritime-related studies, and even a sales industry professional turned full-time teacher.

Other activities in the Graduates’ Forum include a financial literacy education session facilitated by First Metro Asset Management, Inc. and an inspirational talk by Bro. Raymond Cruz, Sangguniang Laiko ng Pilipinas Ligaya ng Panginoon President on ‘living for a purpose’.

Nearing the end of the ceremony, everyone was invited for an outreach program the following day, where they taught proper hygiene to children in Balimbing Elementary School in Tanay, Rizal, together with Manila Tytana Colleges nursing graduates. Organized by the alumni association of MBFI scholar graduates, Alumni Scholars for Service, Excellence, and Transformation (ASSET), the activity aimed to give scholars the opportunity to put into practice the values they gained in their undergraduate journey through the support of the two foundations.

Since 1995, the Metrobank Scholarship Program has been awarding financial grants to support deserving students through college. To date, MBFI and GTFI has produced over 1,000 college graduates.

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