I write better when I smoke. Don’t ask me to reduce it to a science.

On Service Contracts

The Jester posits an interesting question.

Should any student whose tertiary education will be sponsored in whole or in part by taxpayers’ money via a scholarship and/or via state-subsidized tuition be made subject to a service contract as a condition for admission to a state school or provision of a scholarship grant, the length of the service contract proportional to the cost of scholarship and subsidy?

And elicits an even more interesting response:

Hindi dapat bigyan ng service contract ang mga graduate ng UP dahil lamang sa subsidized tuition. Bakit, utang pa ba namin ang subsidy ng gobyerno?

Kung tutuusin, wala nga dapat kaming bayarang tuition. Kailangan suportahan kami ng gobyerno ng buo — kaya nga kami pumasa sa UPCAT.

At kung gusto naming umalis sa bansang to, wag nyo kami pigilan. Wala kaming utang sa inyo, at lalo nang wala kaming responsibilidad sa inyo.

Kung ayaw ninyong tanggapin yan, puwes, wag nyo na lang kaming isubsidize. Isaksak nyo sa baga nyo yang ssubsidy nyo na yan.


Anyway, I’ll leave that moron’s response alone. After all, idiocy is everyone’s god-given right.

Back to the Jester’s question … after the commute.


On the one hand, I agree with the underlying principle of giving back value for the education you received. This is further reinforced by my belief that every citizen should render some service to the state. On the other hand, I’m leery of service contracts being a condition for admission to a state university or for the grant of a scholarship.

For one thing, admission to a state university has always been merit based, and i don’t see anything that needs changing in that regard. For another, subsidizing the education of truly gifted individuals is an objective good that the state has a considerable interest in undertaking.

So, i’m going to meta-position here (as meta-positioning is defined by cvj), and say that, NO, signing a service contract should not be a prerequisite to admission to a state university, or to eligibility for a subsidy. However, additional subsidies should be made available to those who are willing to sign a service contract.


Filed under: pop-culture, society, ,

12 Responses

  1. Jen says:

    Additional subsidies….i’m with you on that Rom…I think that’s fair enough.

  2. rom says:

    Jen: yeah, cause if service contracts are required for all new entrants, that’ll filter out even the poor but totally deserving who – because of financial needs – have to seek out the best possible employment at the soonest possible time.

  3. For one thing, admission to a state university has always been merit based…

    i think that holds true only for UP.

    i could be wrong.

  4. rom says:

    jester: hah. from what i hear, not even UP all the time. but still, that’s what admissions are in general. i really wouldn’t want to replace that with a system that limits admissions to those who are desperate enough to commit three or more years of their lives without living first. y’know what i mean?

  5. tell that to us DOST kids who still have “hit” when getting NBI clearances, five years after the service contract ended 😉

  6. rom says:

    jester: i don’t get it. 😦

  7. we DOST scholars are supposed not to apply as immigrants to another country for five years (if engineering; if other four year courses, four years). after five years we’re supposed to be freed of that contract. the method of control is via the NBI clearance — one is put on the watchlist.

    it’s been four years since that contract has ended (which i didn’t mind serving; i had no intention of emigrating anyway), but the “hit” is still there.

    but that’s another issue altogether, completely unrelated to my stand on why service contracts should be given to state scholars.

  8. Edrie says:

    I don’t think this is someone from UP, just someone pretending to be from UP.

    On the other hand, I actually can visualize several members of a certain political party in the university saying this. Ironically, these are the same morons who are supposedly anti-capitalist and pro-proletariat. *Ahem* STAND-UP *Ahem*

    God, I hate them.

  9. the ip addy said the kid used a up pc. ah well.

  10. rom says:

    Edrie: Hahaha.

  11. Edrie says:

    I notice that you also posted something about the compulsory return of service that is now being asked of applicants/potential students of the UP College of Medicine.

    Here’s a background on that: ever since the 60’s the college has noted that a huge fraction of their alumni land abroad. In fact there are whole batches where all of the members are in the United States. There is even an alumni organization (UP Medical Alumni Society in America) that addresses this fact.

    Looking at that on one hand and the college’s vision-mission (Towards a community-oriented medical education directed to the underserved) on the other, there is a huge dissonance. The administration decided to have all of these odd gimmicks and programs to make graduates stay and practice here (Regionalization Service Program) in exchange for making people’s chances at gaining admission better. They all failed.

    Frankly, this is because the curriculum is really geared towards making graduates ready for the US-MLE. The competitiveness the college gives them allows them to take up residencies in distinguished teaching hospitals. It is here where they notice how the system abroad works and how horrible ours is.

    Second, there is just something about the way PGH is run that robs a person of his or her soul. This started with a survey that began in the double aughts that Jaime Galvez-Tan, former DOH secretary and one of our esteemed faculty, handed out to incoming first-year propers, third-years and interns. He noted that during the first year of med school, everyone is an idealist, almost 100% declaring that they will stay here. During the third year, this changes slightly, but still above 90%. It is between the clinical clerkship and internship years that the shift is dramatic with ideal practice in the Philippines falling to less than 50%.

    You might ask where I stand in all this arguments about this return of service issue. Let’s just say I’m under a study grant from the Department of Health that requires me to stay here for two years for every year they fund my continued education. This program was created to address the hemorrhage of nurses and physicians-turned-nurses (4200 and counting!) out of the country.

    Don’t believe everything that the Department of Labor and Employment says, how we have a surplus of health personnel and all. Those are outright lies. There is a brain drain.

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