November 6, 2019

MANILA, PHILIPPINES – As the “fastest-growing fitness franchise of all time” on a global scale, Anytime Fitness always stays true to its brand values – to provide a safe space whereeveryonecanbethemselves withoutany judgments,intimidation,or discrimination. In line with their current global campaign, ‘You’re Welcome,’ Anytime Fitness Philippines launches a digital movement that aims to spark inspiration through various fitness and wellness stories from its club members. Purple Champion What was previously dubbed as The Search for the Next Digital Ambassador, this year’s competition focuses on redefining what being a ‘champion’ means. “We want to go beyond just celebrating the fitness journeys of our members. It’s their lives, as a whole, that we want to highlight—whether physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual. The label “champion” has so much weight on it. It sounds intimidating and daunting, right? So we want to break that and go further than the physical aspect of it. One doesn’t need to be the strongest or the fittest to be a champion,” says Jap Angeles, Anytime Fitness Asia Regional Marketing Manager. “Fitness looks andmeans differently for everyone.A PurpleChampionbelieves thatevery little push is worth being proud of and that here at Anytime Fitness, you have a safe place to keep trying and reaching your goals,” adds Jap. Together with this year’s Purple Champion search is the international franchise’s “fitainment” series that seeks to bring wellness closer to communities through fun and enjoyable activities. Sweat and have a good time with Anytime Fitness on the following dates: November 16-17 at SM Seaside Cebu, November 23-24 at SM Davao, and November 30-December 01 at TriNoma. Anytime Fitness’ search for the Purple Champion is now open for entries. Visit to nominate. Mechanics

Diwata-2 marks anniversary with demo of localized technologies and applications

November 5, 2019

QUEZON CITY, PHILIPPINES — “Translating knowledge into local technologies and applications” was the chosen theme for the simple celebration marking the first anniversary of Diwata-2 in space, which was held at the University of the Philippines Diliman Electrical and Electronics Engineering Institute (UP-EEEI) on October 29, 2019.   A Year in Space. STAMINA4Space researcher Shielo Namuco summarizing the microsatellite’s status and operations during the morning program. Diwata-2 is a 50-kilogram Earth observation microsatellite built by a team from the University of the Philippines Diliman (UPD) and the Advanced Science and Technology Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST-ASTI), in cooperation with Tohoku University and Hokkaido University in Japan. It was successfully deployed into 600 km Sun-Synchronous Orbit on October 29, 2018. Development of the microsatellite began under the research program, “Development of the Philippines Scientific Earth Observation Microsatellite (PHL-Microsat)” and was completed under the “Space Technology & Applications Mastery, Innovation and Advancement (STAMINA4Space)” program, which continues to operate the microsatellite along with its predecessor, Diwata-1. Both programs are funded by the DOST Grants-in-Aid (DOST-GIA) and monitored by DOST’s Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development (PCIEERD). It is the Philippines’ third satellite sent to space, following the 50 kg. Microsatellite Diwata-1 (deployed to space April 27, 2016) and the 1 kg nanosatellite Maya-1 (deployed on June 29, 2018). As a “science satellite” built in an academic environment, Diwata-2 is primarily intended to conduct scientific measurements and experiments for environmental assessment and monitoring, which can be carried out by its on-board cameras. In its first year in space, Diwata-2 has acquired images covering 46.06% of the Philippines, which are being distributed in the website Current registered users on the website have reached over 800, which span researchers, academic institutions, government, non-profit organizations, industry groups and the general public. Diwata-2 also carries an amateur radio unit (ARU), which can be used by amateur radio hobbyists and first responders as an alternative means of communication during disasters. The ARU payload has seen increasing uptake from various users, with ham radio enthusiasts actively posting and sharing their experiences with Diwata-2 in social media and online platforms. The STAMINA4Space team continues to conduct outreach activities to further promote the use of the Diwata-2 ARU.       Key messages delivered by (clockwise from top) UP-EEEI Director Director Dr. Michael Pedrasa, current DOST Undersecretary for Research and Development Dr. Rowena Guevara (middle) and former Undersecretary Dr. Amelia Guevara (rightmost), DOST-PCIEERD Executive Director Dr. Enrico Paringit, and STAMINA4Space PHL-50 Project Leader Dr. Marc Talampas. In her opening message, DOST Undersecretary for Research and Development Dr. Rowena Guevara said, “The event’s theme, ‘Translating knowledge to local technologies and applications’ captures what the team has been doing since then,” and later added, “We hope to continue this momentum by fostering more local and international linkages and choosing more skilled and passionate researchers in this field in paving the way for future satellites, not only future Diwatas but possibly even more sophisticated satellites that bear the names of more Philippine icons that can proudly symbolize how far the Filipino stamp of ingenuity and innovation can take us.” The researchers’ presentations aimed to show just that, which STAMINA4Space PHL-50 Project Leader Dr. Marc Talampas afterwards summarized in numbers: 13, the number of satellites that are either in orbit, in the lab as engineering models, or under development nurtured by Filipino hands; 46.06%, the percentage of Philippine land area Diwata-2 has captured; 672, the number of screws that had to be checked after every vibration test during Diwata-2’s development (an example of meticulous engineering rigor needed); 3, the “trinity of vision” — light source, object, and detector (basic principles that Diwata-2’s optical payloads operate under); and 101 — for Philippines-Oscar 101 (PO-101), which was designated by AMSAT to Diwata-2’s ARU on April 11 this year.     Morning presentations from (left to right): STAMINA4Space Diwata-2 Project Manager and head of DOST-ASTI’s Solutions and Services Engineering Division Embedded Systems Group Engr. Gerwin Guba on developing Diwata-2, STAMINA4Space OPTIKAL Project Chief Science Research Specialist Dr. Atchong Hilario on payload development and local partners, and STAMINA4Space STeP-UP Embedded Systems Engineer Mary Ann Constante on the Amateur Radio Satellite Station and satellite communications. Guided tours of the University Laboratory for Small Satellite and Space Engineering Systems (ULyS3ES) facility were also opened to the public in the afternoon to interactively showcase the technologies on-board the microsatellite, as well as the localization efforts being made by the STAMINA4Space Program’s different project teams. Over 40 people were accommodated, including grade school to college students, faculty members from some Metro Manila schools, and general STEM enthusiasts. STAMINA4Space Optical Payload Technology, In-Depth Knowledge Acquisition and Localization (OPTIKAL) Project Leader Dr. Maricor Soriano weighed in on what she believes is the most important output of the continuous development of satellites like Diwata-2.   Some of the demo stations showing (from left to right) the OPTIKAL team’s payload development, the PHL-50 team’s gamified Star Tracker demo, STeP-UP scholars showing how Maya-1 works, GRASPED researchers discussing Diwata data applications, and the PEDRO ground receiving station operations streaming live from DOST-ASTI. “More than having our own satellite, I would like to emphasize that what’s more important… ay hindi iyung satellite — it’s the people. Kasi po pag marunong gumawa ng kahit ano itong ating team, kahit ano pa iyung ipagawa mo sa kanila, kaya nila. It’s really the investing in the people na ang pinakaimportante na output nitong program na ito,” she said. STAMINA4Space Program Leader and DOST-ASTI Acting Director Dr. Joel Marciano, Jr. also highlighted the importance of space technology research in developing people, data and industry, representing three innovation thrusts of the STAMINA4Space program. “If we don’t start and sustain this, we will forever be consumers of technology and data provided by other countries,” he said, and offered perspectives on how space technology can feed into the local innovation ecosystem. “We aim to derive economic benefits from space — getting data, building electronics and instruments that can feed into industry through differentiated products and services, training people like the young people that you see here — so that we are not continuously left behind. The future lies in getting data and information from wherever we can get it (and) that includes the strategic vantage point of space.”

Xavier Ateneo produces first graduates of Diploma in Human Resource Management

November 4, 2019

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY - Xavier Ateneo has joined hands with the People Management Association of the Philippines (PMAP) and launched its professional program called Diploma in Human Resource Management (DHRM) last June 2018. This program is in collaboration with the Asian Institute of Human Resource Management (AIHRM). There are five certificate courses under this diploma program which include: Human Resource Development, Human Resource Planning and Acquisition, Compensation Management, Labor Relations, and Organization Development. The program provides students with an excellent balance between theoretical understanding and practical insights into the current environment. Xavier Ateneo has successfully produced five new graduates of the program who attended the graduation ceremony of the Diploma in Human Resource Management at Isabela Ballroom, Makati Shangri-La Hotel, Makati City, during the PMAP 650th General Membership Meeting last October 23, 2019. They are Liezl A Deloso, (freelance HR practitioner and consultant), Ferdinand Basilio E Esguerra (administration and HR head of The Abba’s Orchard School),  Gina Maris M Libot (managing partner and founder of Emerging Business Solutions) and two from Xavier Ateneo, Grace C Maniquiz (HR officer) and Rogelio A. Lee, Jr. (assistant professor of the Psychology Department).   The diploma program is aimed at developing greater knowledge and expertise in managing people across industries in Northern Mindanao. It is intended to complement the hands-on experience of current office administrators, business owners, HR practitioners and provide a more professional understanding and insights into the technical and operational matters associated with managing people and complying with labor laws. Program coordinator Rogelio Lee Jr.  says that, “DHRM builds on the technical and operational aspects of HR and addresses the demand and identified gaps in the market with the academic rigor of a higher diploma.” For the Xavier Ateneo pioneering batch, it took them more than a year to finish the whole program. Designed for working professionals, the program runs on Saturdays which started last June 16, 2018, and had its completion on September 21, 2019.  Five experts in the field of human resources served as program facilitators of the five courses: Dr Aster Daan (HR Development), Dr Marilu Dizon (HR Planning and Acquisition), Napoleon Trillanes Jr (Compensation Management), Dr Dulce Corazon Esperon (Labor Relations) and Aida May Bergado-De Guzman (Organization Development). Fr Rene Tacastacas SJ, former VP for Higher Education and Jhoanna Marie Mocorro, RPsy chair of the XU Psychology Department, discussed and planned the program where students can earn a credit of three units through each certificate. The Xavier Ateneo Academic Council headed by VP for higher education Dr Juliet Dalagan has recently approved a new specialized area of interest in industrial-organizational in the MA Psychology program this coming SY 2020-2021, where graduates of DHRM may continue their studies to degree level by applying credits learned.

Teacher Clariz Jane Lasala: ‘Being a teacher takes so much courage’

October 31, 2019

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines — Her photos may have gone viral on social media recently but it was her story that captured the hearts of the people.  Clariz Jane Lasala, a teacher from Butuan City, carried the baby of her young student while the latter was taking a test. The high school student could not find someone to take care of her baby at home so she brought her daughter to the classroom. “Ma’am, pwede ko mag-excuse sa quiz today, wala man g’yud makabantay sa akong baby?” begged the student. (Ma’am, may I be excused from the quiz today because no one will take care of my baby?) “Take the quiz and I’ll take care of your baby,” Teacher Clariz replied.  Their exchange was posted on Facebook and has soon been shared by netizens and the media, calling the act as "inspiring and courageous." “It was definitely something I would do in that kind of situation, seeing someone doing her part and exerting an effort … as a student would, naturally make you want to help,” Teacher Clariz shared. “I carried the baby for almost two hours while her mom took the exam but I didn’t feel any struggle while the baby was with me because I accepted the situation as a blessing.”  The event helped Teacher Clariz realize that being a teacher “doesn’t always equate to conducting quizzes, exams, and projects.”  She said: “I wanted her mom to know that she was not alone in her battle, especially at that moment. I want her to realize that whatever hardships she may go through as a student and as a mother, she will never be let down by the Man above.”  Many teenage moms face the stigma when they come to school with their baby in tow. But Teacher Clariz decided that she would volunteer to take care of the baby so her student could take the test along with her classmates. “For me, being a ‘teacher for others’ must be the ultimate goal of every individual that ought to educate because I strongly believe that teaching isn’t about how much we receive but it is all about how much we put into giving,” she said.  Teacher Clariz wanted to show her support to the student who strives hard to finish her studies despite the challenges of being a teenage mom. The family, friends, and netizens alike praised Teacher Clariz, saying that many would have misjudged and turned the student away as the baby would be a distraction in class. Teacher Clariz attributes Xavier University - Ateneo de Cagayan, her alma mater, for the formation she has undergone: “Xavier Ateneo molded me to become a better person whose heart is filled with God's love and live by God's words. The institution didn't just give me the answers to my long wonders but it taught me how to make decisions without sacrificing my faith even in the toughest of times.”  She graduated with a degree in BS Business Administration major in Business Economics in March 2019. “Xavier Ateneo pushed me beyond my limits that made me become an individual that can be a person for and with others. It served as my home and sanctuary that nurtured my growth. It helped me find God in all things, to love and understand people with their own tales,” she shared.  “It helped me embody the principle of cura personalis (care for the whole person) to love ourselves and others. It helped me realize the values behind the wise words nemo dat quod non habet (no one gives what they don't have).” Her story has helped spread awareness for being a good role model as a teacher.  “We, teachers have so much to offer, we can do more and more for others. God gave us different missions and I think it’s time for us to do our part,” Teacher Clariz said. “Being a teacher takes so much courage because we have to deal with different personalities but if we will take the situation as a reason to grow and serve others, we will soon realize that being a teacher is indeed a blessing.

Ayala Coop kicks off “Be Juan Para Sa Kalusugan” program for zero hunger in Pampanga and Bataan

October 28, 2019

As part of its initiatives to promote health and wellness, the Ayala Multi-Purpose Cooperative (Ayala Coop) is launching “Be Juan Para sa Kalusugan,” which seeks to provide nutritious fortified rice meals for hundreds of children in Pampanga and Bataan. Ruel T. Maranan, President of Ayala Foundation and Vice Chairman of Ayala Multi-Purpose Cooperative The Ayala Coop, in partnership with Ayala Foundation, kicked off the project as a volunteerism activity for its members, who came together to pack fortified rice for distribution to children from seven barangays in San Fernando, Pampanga. The event was held on October 25 at the Laus Events Place in San Fernando, Pampanga. The fortified rice will help feed 490 Grades 3-6 children from seven barangays in the City of San Fernando, Pampanga and some 300 school children from Bagac Elementary School, in the province of Bataan over a period of six months. The health status of the beneficiaries will be monitored with the help of Rise Against Hunger Philippines, which will supervise the feeding together with school partners and monitor the health status of the children. Said Ruel Maranan, vice chair of the Ayala Coop and president of Ayala Foundation: “Ayala has long been committed to contributing to national development. Through our business and social development initiatives, we continue to address existing and emerging needs of Filipinos, while also helping improve the lives of people and communities. Be Juan Para sa Kalusugan signifies our recognition of an important concern in the country—health and nutrition. Investing in nutrition is one way of investing in our people and their future.” Also actively supporting are Ayala Employee Relations Network (Ayala ERNet) and the Ayala Business Club of Central Luzon.   About the Ayala Multi-Purpose Cooperative The Ayala Multi-Purpose Cooperative is one of the country’s top institution-based cooperatives, with total assets and members’ equity of more than PhP3 billion. It has a membership of over 37,000 nationwide, coming from over 121 Ayala companies.   About Ayala Foundation As the social development arm of the Ayala group of companies, Ayala Foundation envisions communities where people are creative, productive, self-reliant, and proud to be Filipino. Ayala Foundation's main program areas are Education, Community Leadership, Suitable and Sustainable Livelihood, and Arts and Culture. For more information, visit

Three Xavier Ateneo Graduates Top Chemical Technician Exam

October 28, 2019

Known for its decades-long of academic excellence, Xavier University-Ateneo de Cagayan has produced three topnotchers in the October 2019 Chemical Technician Licensure Exam (CTLE). Xavier Ateneo secured three spots in the top 10, with Dave N. Pangilinan at 5th place, Mathew B. Talipan at 7th, and Kimnard Joseph M. Duat at 10th. According to the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC), Xavier Ateneo holds a passing rate of 85.71% for having 36 board passers out of 42 test takers. The PRC reported that 2,298 out of 2,834 takers (81.09%) passed the CTBE, which was administered last October 10. For the Chemist Licensure Exam (CLE), four out of eight Xavier Ateneo test takers passed the exam, namely, Ivy Jane Caranzo, Caryl Mae Dorothy Dablio, Dave N. Pangilinan, and Angelika Uy. Across the country, there were 1,085 takers of the CLE, but only 457 passed the exam. The PRC conducted the Chemist Licensure Exam in Manila, Cagayan de Oro, and Cebu on October 8 and 9. Xavier Ateneo President Fr. Roberto C. Yap SJ congratulated the new chemists and chemical technicians and wished them success in their future endeavors. He also recognized the hard work and perseverance of all Xavier Ateneans who took the CLE and CTLE. Yap extended his gratitude to the faculty members of the XU Department of Chemistry for their guidance and support to examinees. “We thank Arts and Sciences Dean Dr. Judy P. Sendaydiego, Chemistry Department Chairwoman Dr. Analyn C. Asok, the faculty and staff of the Department of Chemistry for the guidance and support they have given to our students,” Yap said. Xavier Ateneo is home to the country's academic achievers and next-generation leaders. Every year, the university is hailed as one of the top-performing schools in board exams. In 2019 alone, Xavier Ateneo has produced topnotchers and board passers in the fields of Nursing, Medicine, Accountancy, and Civil Engineering, among others. Xavier Ateneo commits to uplifting the lives of Kagay-anons by providing them with quality education that would enable them to contribute to Cagayan de Oro’s socioeconomic growth.


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