MAN OF THE HOUR. Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Secretary Mario Montejo answers questions from the press during the public launching of DOST Hybrid Road Train in Clark Freeport Zone, Pampanga last June 25, 2016. (Aries N. Oliveros)
“A scientist can discover a new star, but he cannot make one. He would have to ask an engineer to do that.” —Gordon L. Glegg, British Engineer, 1969
As a teacher at Philippine Science High School – Central Luzon Campus (PSHS-CLC)—an attached agency under the DOST, I had some opportunities to meet Sec. Montejo in person. I was one of those individuals who marvel at his determination and leadership to integrate science in the lives of Filipinos.
Sec. Montejo’s immense support has set a challenge to the PSHS System to be an ASEAN leader in science high school education. During his term, PSHS has established new regional campuses to offer quality education through a scholarship program in CALABARZON, MIMAROPA, SOCKSARGEN, CARAGA, and Zamboanga Peninsula.
He also fought and won the political battle for the magna carta benefits of DOST employees and personnel.
My most recent interaction with Sec. Montejo was last April 13 during the Science Nation Tour held at the Fontana Convention Center in Clark, Pampanga. Through a talk show hosted by one of my campus journalists, he encouraged PSHS-CLC scholars to serve and work for the government—a way to give back to our country who invested on them to be future S&T leaders.
UP-CLOSE WITH SUPER MARIO. DOST Secretary Mario Montejo tells PSHS-CLC scholars that modern public transportation system such as first-class trains will help the country achieve greater progress. (Aries N. Oliveros)
Sec. Montejo also shared his views on light topics during the Fast Talk segment of the interview. He delighted the scholars by choosing Spiderman over Batman and Deadpool, vanilla over chocolate ice cream, push-up over sit-up, Golden State Warriors over San Antonio Spurs, and Jollibee over McDonalds, to name some of his preferences.
As an engineer by profession, Sec. Montejo implemented groundbreaking initiatives such as Project Noah and Diwata-1 micro-satellite that benefit our countrymen.
Through the intensified Small Enterprise Technology Upgrading Program (SET-UP), several entrepreneurs in the provinces have adopted technological innovations to improve their operations and thus boost their productivity and competitiveness.
The program enables firms to address their technical problems through technology transfer and technological interventions to improve productivity through better product quality, human resources development, cost minimization and waste management, and other operation related activities.
Under the Duterte administration, former DOST undersecretary for S&T Services Fortunato De La Peña will be the DOST secretary.
As Sec. Montejo is set to leave his post in DOST on June 30, I salute him for an excellent job.
Thank you, Super Mario!