Australian Embassy
The Philippines

MR181007-Filipino scholars return to contribute to country’s development


Davao City – Twenty-seven (27) Filipino scholars have returned to the Philippines from their one-year postgraduate studies in Australia, and are now ready to implement their re-entry action plans that will contribute to the development agenda of their respective institutions.

The group were awarded scholarships administered by the Philippines-Australia Human Resource Development Facility (PAHRDF). PAHRDF is a A$ 60 million (approx Php2.3 billion), five-year initiative of the Australian Government through its international aid agency, AusAID, which aims to improve the capacity of targeted partner institutions with assistance that may include long-term training and other shorter-term human resource development activities.

PAHRDF provides around 80 Australian Development Scholarships (ADS) each year for full-time postgraduate academic studies at Australian universities. ADS awardees are nominated by various government, private and academic institutions in the Philippines to pursue post graduate studies in different disciplines, as part of priority programs identified by their respective institutions.

PAHRDF assists these partner institutions in identifying and addressing key organisational needs so they can provide better service and manage their institutions more effectively, particularly on human resource management and development.

Upon completion of their studies, the scholars and their supervisors work on the scholars’ re-entry action plans (REAPs), which will ensure that the theories and skills the scholars learned in Australia can be used to attain organisational objectives.

The recent batch of returning scholars reviewed and presented their REAPs in a Re-entry Action Plan Conference held in this city on 18 October, attended by AusAID’s Minister Counsellor in the Philippines, Titon Mitra, and Florante Igtiben, Chief, Public Investment Staff of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA).

The event was also attended by the respective supervisors of the awardees who participated in the “Pledge of Commitment” ceremony where both the awardees and supervisors promised to ensure successful implementation of the re-entry action plans for their institutions.

“I congratulate the returning scholars and I hope that the training opportunities they have received have equipped them with relevant skills to help their institutions achieve their goals, “ Mr Mitra said.

“We remain committed to delivering a large development scholarship program in the Philippines, which ranks fourth among the major recipients of Australia’s scholarship program in the Asia–Pacific region. The Australian Government recognises that human resource development within institutions is critical to the achievement of the Philippines’ development goals.”

Australia is one of the Philippines’ top grant aid donors, with over A$100 million (Php 4 billion) in aid in 2007-2008. Australia’s aid program to the Philippines has grown to be its fourth largest globally, with some A$570 million in grant contributions over the past decade alone. #