THE UST Graduate School, in partnership with the Department of Science and Technology – Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (DOST-PCHRD), launched a doctorate program in health research on Feb. 15, with six scholars in the pioneer batch.  

Prof. Consuelo Gonzalez-Suarez, the program head, said the training of health researchers would solve a “growing need” amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

The new program in health research is a three-year program that includes foundational coursework on research methods.

It will admit 10 students every two years, all of whom will be scholars sponsored by the DOST-PCHRD. The scholarship covers tuition and other university fees, monthly stipends, yearly book and transportation allowances, insurance, and research grants. 

Each student will have two mentors: one expert from the Philippines and one method expert from Australia. Students and mentors will meet once a month, while the program lead and students will meet once every two months to monitor their progress.

The program is open to both medical and non-medical students, but non-medical students must be holders of a master’s degree. Applicants must also be a primary author of a paper published in a local or international journal. They will defend their research proposals and have them reviewed for feasibility before admission.

The pioneer batch of the health research program is composed of six students. They started coursework in mid-February 2022. The scholars and their research topics are as follows:

  • Dr. Warren Bacorro – technique for cervical cancer
  • Dr. Mary Monica Bueno – nerve injection on NEO osteoarthritis
  • Dr. Ma. Belinda Fidel – ultrasound findings in athletes with hamstrings injury
  • Paulin Morato Espino – play during the pandemic
  • Reil Espino – biomechanics in hamstrings injury
  • Diane Mendoza – effect of colored rice in cholesterol and blood sugar

The University and DOST-PCHRD signed a memorandum of agreement on Jan. 24, 2022, via Zoom. Christine Joyce Paras


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