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RISE FROM A DRAGON’S ASHES: UA&P USG launches Project Phoenix

Words by: Nicco Sobremonte

Being a scholar in UA&P is both a privilege and a responsibility. Aside from not being able to worry about the tuition expenses, scholars need to maintain their granted scholarships by excelling well in their academic subjects. They are also considered exemplars at handling other responsibilities aside from academics, including organization work, athletics, and leadership roles. Currently, UA&P offers 4 scholarship variants to deserving students who show such characteristics: Merit, Financial Assistance, Athletics, and Music and Arts. Soon, the University will be adding another type of scholarship to its helm: The Phoenix Scholarship, which is a project of the University Student Government (USG) this academic year.

   The Bosun had the opportunity to speak with Miguel V. Tan, current Senior, School of Management Representative and Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of the USG, who is spearheading the new scholarship program, more known as Project Phoenix, together with his dedicated team at the Office of the CFO, namely Jay Regala, Michiko Matsuda, Bianca Simeon, Donna Magat, and Binhi Canobas. Project Phoenix will also be a product of joint efforts with the Project Management Team (PMT) and the Media Management Committee (MMC).

Attached below is a transcript of the complete interview, followed by excerpts from the project proposal from USG. These address questions behind the USG’s much awaited project.

Bosun: What was the inspiration behind the project?

Tan: When I was in EMA (Enterprise Management Association), I really wanted to help out a lot of scholars who [were] about to graduate, more importantly, those who [were having] financial troubles. A lot of them actually came to me, knowing my background, so what I did together with my colleagues [was] an art fair where the funds [went] to the scholars. Now that I’m part of the USG, I think what I did in EMA can also be done to the whole University.

Bosun: What is the goal of the project?

Tan: The end goal of the project is to have sufficient funds that will be for the qualified students who’ve applied to be one of the Phoenix Scholars.

Bosun: What was the project’s “first stance”?

Tan: The project had its initial launch during the annual Talumpati made by our President, Mio Tuason. He mentioned in his speech that the project will be a first in the University since we have the support of the Admissions Office with us, [and since] they also want to have more students added to the list of scholars. Mio also mentioned that there will be three sub-projects which will serve as the fundraisers for the project: The UA&P Golf Tournament For A Cause, Art With A Big Heart, and the Financial Literacy Summit.

Bosun: After this “first stance”, what were the initial reactions to the project?

Tan: Aside from the overwhelming support of the University, I was surprised that a lot of sponsors came to us, especially since we will be having the golf tournament on the 16th [of November] at the Valley Golf and Country Club in Antipolo. Right now, we have collected P200,000 from solicitations, just near our projected fund goal.

Bosun: When will the project be fully launched?

Tan: The project will be fully-launched this [academic] year, beginning in the Second Semester.

Bosun: What are the possible benefits of being a Phoenix Scholar?

Tan: One of the benefits of being a potential Phoenix Scholar is that you will also be an ambassador for the USG, since he/she will be part of all the activities and projects we’ll impose in the coming semester.

Bosun: How many slots are up for grabs to be a Phoenix Scholar?

Tan: As of now, in an ideal timeline of 2-3 years we plan to award the scholarship to at least 3-5 students, who would be the first batch of Phoenix Scholars.

Bosun: Do you think that Project Phoenix will become a long-term project?

Tan: Personally, I think that it may happen, which is why we’re already coming up with different methods for its sustainability. One of the methods is to have the backup or excess amount of funds serving as savings. That way this project will continue even if we’re not the officers of USG anymore.

Bosun: How does one become a Phoenix Scholar?

Tan: This project is not only limited to non-scholars, whereas current scholars can also apply to be a Phoenix Scholar. We, as much as possible, give priority to graduating students who are experiencing financial difficulties, but we’re not closing the possibility of having Phoenix Scholars from the lower batches in the future.

[Based from Project Plan:] Once the project is in full swing, this will entail a 2-week application period wherein selected students will be deemed as Phoenix Scholars once they meet the desired criteria we’re looking for.

Bosun: Why decide to go for such project?

[Based from Project Plan:] According to the proposal submitted to the Management Committee (ManCom), this is coinciding with the golden year of the University and to address those scholars who have financial troubles and are about to graduate.

 Bosun: Who else is involved in the project, aside from the people mentioned earlier?

[Based from Project Plan:] The project will also involve the alumni. The USG wants this project to serve as a bridge for them and the chosen beneficiaries. The chosen alumni will be paired with the Phoenix Scholar depending on the courses they’ve obtained or currently studying. In this way, the compatibility factor will be seen in the scholar assuring that they have another mentor in their stay in the University, especially [since] they will be close to achieving their dream of getting that college diploma.

Project Phoenix is just about to take flight! We invite everyone to come and support our very own USG by participating in UA&P Golf for a Cause, a major fundraiser for Project Phoenix which will be held at the Valley Golf and Country Club in Antipolo City on November 16, Thursday!

More information about UA&P Golf for a Cause here: https://goo.gl/jjWvdt

To know more about UA&P Project Phoenix by the USG, visit their official Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/USGPhoenix/