How do the youth see themselves, say, 10 years from now?

Science professionals recommend biotechnology careers for them in the future. More science careers, they say, are up for grabs as there are a lot of exciting professions that future scientists can choose from.

Students from around Cavite gained some knowledge and pieces of advice from biotechnology experts on how vast opportunities are in the field of science and technology, particularly in biotechnology.

To enhance students’ and teachers’ knowledge and skills in biotechnology, and encourage the young to take up related courses in college, the Philippine Science High School System (PSHSS) of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) organized a forum dubbed “Career Talks and Interactive Hands-On Activity for High School Students” Held last November 26 at SM City Dasmariñas in Cavite, the forum is part of the celebration of the National Biotechnology Week (NBW) 2015.

Dr. Antonio A. Alfonso, industry affairs and regulatory lead of DuPont Pioneer Philippines, gave insights on “Building a Career in Biotechnology and Related Sciences.”

According to Dr. Alfonso who is a plant breeder and molecular biologist, there is a dire need for more agribiotechnologists and biotechnology entrepreneurs, especially more plant breeders, in the countryto address the needs of the people when it comes to food security.

Meanwhile, not all science careers requirefull practice of the profession. Some use the power of communication to disseminate information about biotechnology and science per se.

Dr. Mariechel J. Navarro, director of Global Knowledge Center on Crop Biotechnology of the International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications, is one of the many biotechnology experts turned science communicators. According to her, science information must be popularized for the public to easily understand it. People with extensive background on science can be science communicators by laymanizing every bit of information.

Among the popular media for science communicators are social networks like Facebook and Twitter, websites, publications, mobile apps, the target audience of which are the youth.

On the other hand, Dr. Navarro also encouraged others without a science background but who want to be science communicators, to keep on reading and researching to pursue their dreams.

“Do not hurry. Everything will take place at the right time,” said Dr. Navarro, quoting the popular maxim of the infamous Lola Nidora of Eat Bulaga. “Think carefully about what you want to pursue as a career.”

The high school students were also able to get a glimpse of what forensic scientists and crime investigators do through a hands-on activity on DNA fingerprinting.

DNA fingerprinting is a technique used to distinguish between individuals of the same species using only samples of their Deoxyribonucleic Acid (DNA). A product of biotechnology, DNA fingerprinting is often used to determine family relationships, disease-causing organisms, and solve crimes.

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High school students from Cavite participate in the hands-on activity on DNA fingerprinting during the Career Talks and Interactive Hands-On Activity for High School Students.

Dr. Mariechel J. Navarro and Dr. Antonio A. Alfonso discuss the possible science careers that the young ones can pursue in the future. (Photos by Henry de Leon)

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