By Merlinda Hernando-Malipot
To encourage more doctoral students of agricultural universities to avail of offered scholarships, the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA) announced that applications for doctoral degree (Ph.D.) scholarships will be accepted until the end of this month.
SEARCA said that the last call for Ph.D. applicants is set on April 30, 2017.
A program aimed at advancing rural development and poverty reduction in Southeast Asia through graduate education, the scholarship research funds up to $4,500. It also allows successful applicants the option to do a two-month internship at SEARCA with allowances for travel, stipend, and insurance.
Aside from the Ph.D. program, SEARCA provides scholarship for short-term training, research and development, and knowledge management.
Moreover, the topic of the applicant’s Ph.D. research must be aligned with SEARCA’s thrust of inclusive and sustainable agricultural and rural development (ISARD) towards food security and poverty alleviation in Southeast Asia. SEARCA’s website provides the complete details of the specific thrusts under ISARD.
Those who are eligible to apply for the SEARCA scholarship are Filipinos and nationals of other Southeast Asian countries, namely: Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand, Timor-Leste and Vietnam.
Aside from Ph.D. students of agricultural universities, regular staff members of government agencies or non-profit development-oriented institutions are also eligible to apply for scholarships.
However, priority will be given to Southeast Asians who are enrolled in Ph.D. programs of universities which are members of the SEARCA-initiated Southeast Asian University Consortium for Graduate Education in Agriculture and Natural Resources (UC).
The UC members are UPLB, Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM), Institut Pertanian Bogor (IPB) and Universitas Gadjah Mada (UGM) in Indonesia and Kasetsart University (KU) in Thailand.
The SEARCA – which has been headed by Dr. Gil Saguiguit Jr. since 2009 – is hosted by the Philippine government within the University of the Philippines-Los Baños (UPLB) campus. It is mandated to build the capacities of institutions working in agricultural and rural development in Southeast Asia.