The College of Development Communication (CDC) hosted a hybrid launching ceremony on April 12 for a monograph containing stories of the most significant change experienced by beneficiaries of the SIKAT Scholarship Program on Youth Empowerment, the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiative of the Energy Development Corporation (EDC).

Titled Stories of Change, the monograph is a product of a Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) research project conducted by CDC.

Dr. Trina Leah T. Mendoza, project leader and chair of the Department of Development Broadcasting and Telecommunication (DDBT), explained that they used the Most Significant Change (MSC) technique, a participatory and qualitative M&E approach, which involved collecting stories from the scholars, focusing on what the latter think is the most significant change that occurred and why they think it occurred vis-a-vis the SIKAT program. These stories were aligned with certain domains of change determined by EDC, which included changes in the scholars’ attitude or behavior, their community participation, and their families’ quality of life. These were the stories included in the monograph.

Meanwhile, Asst. Prof. Ma. Teresita B. Osalla, co-project leader and DDBT faculty member, shared about the beginnings of the research project in 2020 through her thesis advisee, Ms. Althea Torralba-Divinagracia, who was the partnerships officer of EDC at the time. She expressed her gratitude to Ms. Divinagracia for the network she provided to CDC and EDC.

Ms. Rowena B. Daep, one of the SIKAT scholars and UPLB BS Biology alumna, was also able to share a message on behalf of her fellow scholars. Coming from a family of farmers with an unstable source of income, she said that the scholarship program helped her immensely in getting through college. Not only did the program provide her with financial aid, but it also made her a champion of environmental stewardship, through initiatives, such as tree planting activities. It also molded her professionalism through career readiness seminars facilitated by EDC. Joining her physically and virtually were her fellow scholars, who are mostly UP graduates, and some scholars currently studying at UPLB.

In her opening remarks, Dean Maria Stella C. Tirol lauded EDC for centering its CSR program on education, which she said is key in unfolding the human potential, an ethos also held by CDC. She also thanked them for being one of CDC’s academic field work partners for students.

On the other hand, in her closing remarks, Ms. Maria Nancy P. Ibuna, head of corporate relations of EDC, expressed her gratitude to CDC for aiding them in assessing the impact of the SIKAT program, which they have been offering for more than 10 years now and which has supported over 200 scholars. She also hoped that the monograph produced by CDC would inspire prospective SIKAT scholars.

Also included in the project are Asst. Prof. Reianne Quilloy and Asst. Prof. Louise Villanueva as project staff, Mr. Christopher N. Calamlam as layout artist, Ms. Carol Cañubas as administrative support staff, and Ms. Lily L. Tallafer as monograph co-editor.

CDC’s other department chairs also attended the launch, namely Asst. Prof. Aletheia C. Araneta (Department of Development Journalism), Mr. Elijah Jesse M. Pine (Department of Educational Communication), and Asst. Prof. Quilloy (representing Dr. Elaine DC. Llarena, Department of Science Communication). (Miguel Victor Durian)