Medical schools in eight state universities and colleges in the country will offer tuition-free education in the academic year 2017 to 2018, Malacanang announced on Thursday.
In a press briefing, Presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella identified the following SUCs that will offer the said cash grants to students under the Doctor of Medicine program:
- University of Northern Philippines
- Mariano State University
- Cagayan State University
- Bicol University
- Western Visayas State University
- University of the Philippines-Leyte
- Mindanao State University
- University of the Philippines-Manila.
The said financial assistance is “intended for new and continuing medical students who will be enrolling for academic year 2017 to 2018,” Abella said.
The cash grants program will be funded through P317.1 million “built-in appropriations” for the selected SUCs, with each getting P39 million for the cash grants.
A joint memorandum circular, signed between the Commission on Higher Education and the Department of Budget and Management, said the assistance program will give a student-grantee “one hundred percent tuition fee subsidy.”
To qualify for the program, a student must:
- pass the admission requirements of the SUC,
- be enrolled in the authorized Doctor of Medicine program of the select SUCs,
- maintain a general weighted average of at least a passing grade, and
- carry a regular academic load and complete a degree within the period allowed by the university.
Applicants must submit an accomplished form directly to the SUC concerned, together with required documents, including a duly-certified copy of grades for the latest semester or term attended.
While the implementing guidelines do not mention an applicants' capacity to pay, applicants must also submit the latest Income Tax Return (ITR) of their parents or guardians.
According to CHED Commissioner Prospero “Popoy” de Vera III, student-grantees will have to render a one-year return service to the Philippines for every year of cash grant he or she receives.
The said commitment—already carried out for all medical and other health-related courses in UP—may be carried out by serving as doctors in government or private hospitals, local government health facilities, or as doctors to the barrios.” —NB, GMA News