In view of De La Salle University’s commitment to serve the poor, the University has once again awarded scholarships to 50 deserving public high school students through its Vaugirard Scholarship Program (VSP) in a recognition program at Henry Sy Sr. Hall, July 25, 2013.
The scholarship, named after the place where St. John Baptist de La Salle founded his first novitiate, is a joint project between the University and the Department of Education (DepEd). Now in its second year, it aims to provide public school students from across the country an opportunity to take up any undergraduate degree program for free. In addition to this, scholars are also granted a monthly stipend of P 10,000 and free accommodation at the Lasallian Study Center, a dormitory for scholars.
Going beyond the target
In line with the University’s vision mission statement, the Office of Admission and Aid (OAS) has made it a point to offer various scholarships to less fortunate but deserving students. Last year marked a particularly remarkable milestone for the OAS, as they spearheaded the granting of scholarships through the VSP and the Gokongwei Grant Program. The launch of both programs is made all the more remarkable by the fact that DLSU was able to actualize its 20 percent scholar population target in the same year.
More than this, however, DLSU President and Chancellor Br. Ricky Laguda FSC believes that DLSU should hone scholars because they have the potential to become the country’s prime movers. Beyond achieving a set scholarship target, Laguda likewise hopes that through the program, the University molds the scholars into Lasallians who shall act for God and country, even after they graduate. “[The scholars] must also know [their] mission: helping others and serving the Church and the nation,” he adds.
DepEd Undersecretary Mario Derequito shares the same sentiments as Laguda. He commends DLSU for providing education to the poor with its various programs, adding that “[DLSU and DepEd] embrace the principle of education for all… because education is a right for all people, whether poor or rich.”
Most comprehensive scholarship
This year, DLSU has managed to give out Vaugirard grants to 50 public high school graduates, who were among the highest scorers on the DLSU College Admission Test (DLSUCAT). Mia Claire Catapang, a Vaugirard scholar, shares that the scholarship has helped people like her, whose parents can’t afford to pay for DLSU’s exorbitant tuition fees. Citing the program as “the most comprehensive scholarship program for public high school students in DLSU”, she believes that the Vaugirard Scholarship Program “[bridges] faith and scholarship” and helps students like them pursue academic excellence.
In an oath taking ceremony led by scholar Camille de Pedro, the new batch of Vaugirard scholars set their commitments and promised to be “genuine social agent of change bound by the Lasallian traditions of excellence and service.”
Expanding scholarship arm
With the ongoing application period for incoming freshmen of AY 2014-2015, the Office of Admissions and Scholarships (OAS) continues to utilize various programs and plans to reach out to students from lower socio-economic segments. To stay consistent with the mission, an array of scholarships and further related schemes are used.
Mr. Joel Navarez, Coordinator for Internally-Funded Scholarships affirms, “The University continues to waive the admissions fee of applicants from Philippine public high schools to give them the opportunity to take the De la Salle University College Admission Test (DCAT).”
Navarez adds that DLSU has increased its External Testing Centers in the provinces and in places accessible to applicants from public high school to 29, as compared to last year’s 26.
Apart from the VSP however, the St. La Salle Financial Assistance, particularly for incoming college freshman students, provides 25 up to 100 percent scholarship for those who meet the qualifications set by the OAS.
Four years ago, former DLSU President and Chancellor Br. Armin Luistro FSC established the One La Salle Scholarship fund to initiate the increase of the projected scholar population in the University. The LaSallian previously published that the Full Scholarship Equivalence (FSE) aim, the percentage of full scholar students versus the total number of full time students enrolled, was actualized.