Inn-OWWA-Vators is the Innovation Team of the Overseas Worker Welfare Administration (OWWA). They came up with the  EDSP e-Scholars Program as the team’s innovation project. This was made to provide efficient and effective monitoring and tracking of OWWA’s scholars. Using pre-gathered data and some insight sharing, the team was able to identify different issues on the delivery of the Education for Development Scholarship Program (EDSP) to OWWA scholars. Issues identified were summarized to personal reasons of scholars, limited personnel, interventions to improve scholar’s performance, logistical problems, delayed payment, problems with monitoring schemes, data management issues, difficulty in reporting, and outdated guidelines. Solution ideas like EDSP policy review, personnel capability enhancement, scholar support intervention, forging partnerships, and the EDSP e-Scholar Portal were generated using different brainstorming techniques. They pursued the EDSP e-Scholar Portal, which has features such as scholar account, OWWA news, public posts and announcements, FAQs, “Magpasikat ka!”, iskolar alumni/graduates corner, parents’ and family corner, ETU programs & services, directory, and “May hugot ka.” The project aims to ensure that 95% of the scholars will graduate.

Ideas Generated

To address the priority issues, the team brainstormed thoroughly using techniques such as re-expression, related world, revolution and combination to come up with solution ideas. Solutions generated are as follows:

  1. Establish clear guidelines for monitoring and intervention
  2. Visit the schools to get reports
  3. Schedule home visitations
  4. Return service of OWWA scholars
  5. Standardize the modules for interventions
  6. Hire regular plantilla personnel and Job Order personnel to scan all the files
  7. Train the personnel on data management to empower them
  8. Utilize scholars associations to monitor scholars’ performance
  9. Establish the ‘Mentor me’ program of older scholars to new entrants
  10. Celebrate scholar’s alumni homecoming
  11. Have a date with the scholars
  12. Use a one-on-one approach in counseling
  13. Survey scholars to extract their needs to design new interventions
  14. Schools shall directly submit to OWWA
  15. Request copy of grades from schools
  16. Forge partnership with school guidance counselors and Philippine Society of Psychologists
  17. Partner with school to ensure the timeliness of posting grades
  18. Digitize the records and automate data collection, reporting, and monitoring system
  19. Create offsite data storage
  20. Create a system for scholars where they can submit reports for the release of payment
  21. Establish an online tracking system of scholars’ grades information and requirements
  22. Use GPS or tracking devices for location of scholars
  23. Communication channels on the availability of payment must be improved
  24. Use a payroll-like ATM account with card book

Make use of social media, e.g. Facebook group, to appeal to the “millennials,” recognize good performing scholars and post inspiring messages for scholars In summary, the team came up with six (6) themes for their insights, namely:

  1. Monitoring of students’ performance and behavior
  2. Hiring and training of personnel
  3. Online access to information
  4. Increase payment methods
  5. Communication Technology
  6. Support Programs for Scholars

Innovation Project

The Inn-OWWA-Vators have come up with the EDSP e-Scholar Portal in order to provide a systematic, efficient and timely monitoring and tracking system to all OWWA scholars. They have unanimously agreed that this will provide more impact with the stakeholders of OWWA’s EDSP. Program coordinators initially find it difficult to keep track of the status and various concerns of the scholars, which they find crucial to the accomplishment of the EDSP Scholarship Grant. EDSP e-Scholar Portal, a Monitoring and Tracking System, tracks the number of OWWA scholar that increases every year. Inn-OWWA-Vators’ e-Scholar Portal has the following features

  1. OSID Log-in
  2. News
  3. Public post
  4. FAQs
  5. Magpasikat ka!
  6. Iskolar alumni/graduates’ corner
  7. Parents corner
  8. Family corner
  9. ETU programs & services
  10. Directory
  11. May hugot ka?

Data retained in the portal are the following:

  1. Personal data
  2. Profile picture
  3. Full name (ln, fn, mn)
  4. Contact number: mobile, landline
  5. E-mail address
  6. Date of birth
  7. Place of birth
  8. Permanent home address
  9. Present mailing address
  10. Name of OFW
  11. Relationship to OFW
  12. Latest membership record
  13. Position
  14. Jobsite
  15. Name of guardian
  16. Contact number of guardian/s
  17. Relationship to guardian
  18. Educational data
  19. Name of school
  20. Official address
  21. Contact person & number
  22. Complete name of course & major
  23. Scholarship data

Project Success Measures

Through the EDSP e-Scholars Program, the agency will be able to provide efficient and effective monitoring and tracking of OWWA’s scholars, improve the monitoring schemes, and address logistical problems. Thus, the success measures of the project are as follows:

  1. 95% completion of graduates, which will redound to the fulfillment of OFWs dreams
  2. No resources are wasted if scholars are able to finish their course