Four BS Biology students from Our Lady of Fatima University (OLFU) and two BS Information Technology students from PHINMA-University of Pangasinan (UPang) finished their on-the-job training as part of the first cycle of the Students’ Training Support (STrainS) program of the DA-National Fisheries Research and Development Institute (NFRDI).

In his welcome message, Dr. Mudjekeewis Santos, Scientist V and chief of the Training Division (TD), emphasized the importance of strengthening the NFRDI’s network and linkage with various fisheries schools across the country through sharing of experiences and expertise in the field.

“Thank you to the practicum coordinators, deans, and university heads for entrusting NFRDI with the opportunity to mentor and support the students with their internship. Your trust in us is a testament to the strong partnership that we have built with academic institutions, and we are grateful for your continued collaboration,” said NFRDI Executive Director Dr. Lilian Garcia in a message delivered by her Executive Assistant Shirley Bernardo.

The highlight of the program was the presentations of the students’ significant accomplishments, outputs, and testimonies.

The OLFU students were assigned to the Aquaculture Research and Development Division (ARDD) and underwent a comprehensive program that included lectures and hands-on training. Meanwhile, the UPang students, assigned to TD and Integrated Research Laboratory (IRL), presented systems that they developed to streamline procurement processes and implement evaluation frameworks for training programs.

“As we end our internship, we express our gratitude for the invaluable mentorship and guidance provided by the NFRDI. We were equipped with newfound knowledge and practical skills that would greatly help us in pursuing our career,” said Liseatiel Angelu Policarpio, an intern from OLFU assigned at the ARDD.

The culmination program, held on May 7, 2024, at the NFRDI Conference Room, was attended by students, mentors, and staff from ARDD, TD, and IRL.

STrainS program is an internship for high school and college students in the Philippines who wish to receive training from NFRDI. It is now accepting applications for the second cycle (July-December 2024). ### (Joey Caser)