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5 Years Of Free Tuition: Vico Sotto Introduces First Meralco-Pasig Medical Scholars
PHOTO BY FACEBOOK/Vico Sotto
  • Mayor Vico Sotto took to Facebook to introduce the inaugural Meralco-Pasig Medical Scholars (MPSM): four young residents of Pasig City that have dreams to become a doctor.

    Sotto omitted the last names of the private citizens who were granted the scholarships, but shared enough to give the public an idea of their qualifications and potential.

    • Alyssa is an alumnus of Pasig City Science High School and graduated college also as a scholar at the Ateneo de Manila University. She is from Pinagbuhatan.
    • Deo went to Pasig Catholic College for high school and graduated Magna Cum Laude from the Central Luzon University. He is from Bagong Ilog.
    • Hannah Ruth graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of the Philippines-Diliman. She had been working in banking before she applied for the MPMS grant. She is from Ugong.
    • Juan Antonio, like Alyssa, is an alumnus of Pasig City Science High School and also a graduating scholar of AdMU. He is from Napico Manggahan.

    All four scholars are 26 years old or younger. They have all qualifed for admission to Ateneo School of Medicine and Public Health (ASMPH) and hold a bachelor's degree. Upon submission of their National Medical Admission Test (NMAT) scores, all the scholars were of the 90 percentile rank or higher. They have all been residents of Pasig for at least three years and had gone to high school in Pasig.

    These are just some of the eligibility criteria that Sotto signed into effect alongside One Meralco Foundation (OMF) in 2021. Besides the exemplary academic abilities, the Memorandum of Agreement states that the family's annual income of the applicants must not exceed P500,000.

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    For the next five years, the OMF will shoulder the tuition fee, laptop, Internet, and miscellaneous fees of these medical students. The Pasig LGU, for its part, will shoulder other recurring fees.

    This is not the first time the mayor has worked with OMF. Even before the pandemic, Sotto had partnered with the social development and corporate foundation of Meralco to distribute disaster preparedness kits to schools. At the onset of COVID-19, OMF mobilized e-Sakay initiatives to transport frontliners in Pasig and provide rapid antibody test kits to the LGU efforts.

    During Sotto's first term as mayor in 2019, he vocalized healthcare among his top priorities. In supporting the next generation of doctors -- no less hailing from Pasig City itself -- he stands by this promise during his second term in office.

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