For the first time, Iloilo City will be host to science and technology exhibits as the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) launches the 2023 National Science, Technology and Innovation Week (NSTW) on November 22 to 26, 2023 at the Iloilo Convention Center, Mandurriao, Iloilo City.

With the theme “Siyensya, Teknolohiya, at Inobasyon: Kabalikat sa Matatag, Maginhawa at Panatag na Kinabukasan,” this year’s NSTW will focus on creating and protecting wealth for a sustainable blue economy. Aside from the exhibit in the city’s convention center, various science products and technology demonstrations will also be showcased simultaneously at other venues within the city.

Part of the many activities on NSTW’s list is the DOST – Science Education Institute (DOST-SEI)’s Youth Excellence in Science (YES) Awarding Ceremony, Launching of the STEM Career Guidance Toolkit and Parent’s Quick Guide to STEM, NuLab: STEM in Motion and the 7th Indie-Siyensya Film Festival.

The YES Awards, happening in the afternoon of November 22 at the main hall of the Iloilo International Convention Center, is an institutional award for exemplary achievement of the youth in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). Regarded as the DOST secretary’s medal, the distinction is given to students who won gold, silver or bronze medals in international STEM competitions. Spearheaded by the DOST-SEI, the awarding ceremony aims to inspire more students to pursue excellence in STEM, with the hope that the awardees will become the country’s STEM leaders in the future.

The awarding ceremony will be followed by the Launching of the STEM Career Guidance Toolkit and Parent’s Quick Guide to STEM. These materials are developed by the DOST-SEI, in partnership with the Foundation for the Promotion of Science and Mathematics Education and Research (FPSMER) and University of the Philippines – National Institute for Science and Mathematics Education Development (UP-NISMED), as supplemental resources to the STEM Career Guidebook for Students launched in 2022. Recognizing the need for a holistic approach in encouraging more students to pursue STEM, the Institute aims to help the teachers guide their students to a well-matched career in the sciences as well as introduce to the parents the various career opportunities in STEM.

With the goal to cater to more students in the place dubbed as the city of love, the nuLab: STEM in Motion mobile learning facility will also make its way to the NSTW bringing science closer to the youth. Packed with fun modules in the fields of marine science, internet of things, nuclear science and mathematics, the nuLab will house young Ilonggos and Ilonggas as they embark on an exciting STEM journey.

Meanwhile, the 7th Indie-Siyensya Film Festival will also be happening simultaneously at the Cinematheque Centre Iloilo of the Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP) during the whole duration of the NSTIW. The festival will premiere 10 film-finalists highlighting the theme “Sustainnovation: Harnessing Science and Technology towards a Greener Community.” The films will be screened for free in three batches per day, beginning at 10:00 am for the first batch, 1:00 pm for the second batch and 2:40 pm for the last batch.

DOST-SEI Director Dr. Josette T. Biyo reiterated the need to reach out to more students in the regions as “talents and gifts might just be waiting to be discovered, waiting for an opportunity” but are ready to begin their journey in the field of science.