National Pathways Youth Conference Slated

Article excerpt

On April 19 to 21, over a hundred youth volunteers from the country's top colleges and universities nationwide are expected to converge at the Ateneo de Manila University campus for the fourth Pathways Youth Conference.

Billed "PYC 4@5: Frging Ties @ Five Years", the event coincides with Pathways fifth anniversary celebration.

"The combined celebration of the Youth Conference, 5th anniversary, and educathon is sure to make the three-day event special and meaningful," said PYC Committee Head Ira Tamis, referring to the three major activities.

educaTHON will cap the celebration as a fund- and awareness-raising walk for the various youth groups that Pathways formed nationwide wirh other education and youth NGOs.

REPLICATING

THE PATHWAYS MOVEMENT

The first Pathways Youth Conference was held in 2004 and was aimed at introducing the youth groups to the tasks as key players in education reform. It also sought to introduce them to the Pathways vision and mission.

"Pathways wanted the youth groups to be aware of our mission and vision, which is essentially to see more opportunities for bright but marginalized high school students to go to college," recalls Tamis, who has headed the PYC organizing committee since, along with co-National Pathways Office (NPO) Program Officer Zsa Zsa Zafe.

"We believe that the students themselves can do their part in this initiative by becoming pathways in their own communities, just as Alay ni Ignacio (ANI) did when it gave birth to Pathways," she says.

ANI is an Ateneo-based mini-school run entirely by student volunteers and which seeks to fill in knowledge gaps among public high school students through summer classes to increase their chances of admission to colleges and universities. Pathways Youth Groups (PYGs) nationwide are expected to replicate this initiative in their own communities by holding academic tutoring sessions, self-enhancement workshop depending on the percieved needs in their respective areas.

As most youth groups have already established their structure and are moving towards institutionalization, this year's theme for the conference reflects the need for them to engage the wider community and forge ties with stakeholders to achieve better results. …