Photo From Benilde School Of Deaf And Applied Studies (sdeas) ; Layout By Maia Martin
Photo From Benilde School Of Deaf And Applied Studies (sdeas) ; Layout By Maia Martin.

Young Deaf Summit makes F2F comeback in Benilde

After two years of being conducted online, the Young Deaf Summit returned face to face to encourage and support young Deaf trailblazers with a series of talks on leadership and advocacies.

By Jorel Magistrado | Monday, 13 February 2023

The 2023 Young Deaf Summit (YDS) made its face-to-face return to encourage and support young Deaf leaders and advocates in nurturing their talents and pursuing their dreams via talks from the College’s alumni and professionals. The event was held at the ARG Theater, Taft Campus on Feb. 11.


The annual summit had the theme of “trailblaze,” referencing Deaf Filipinos who have inspired others by pushing past the limits of the “impossible,” such as Iñigo Asilo, the first Deaf 7-Eleven franchise operator in the Philippines. The discussions revolved mainly around two subjects: the lifestyles and careers of deaf professionals and the deaf youth as future leader-advocates. The education of Benilde’s School of Deaf Education and Applied Studies (SDEAS) was also spotlighted, spearheaded by Benilde SDEAS alumni and directors. 


The first series of talks featured Maria Isabel Cabbab, a Special Education teacher in the Philippine School for the Deaf, Morly Canta, a multimedia artist for Kimstore, and Mark Despabiladeras, a supply chain operations associate at Accenture. They talked about pushing boundaries despite their disability and helping others within the community. They also shed light on their journeys in their respective fields.


The second leg of the event featured Trivor Latayan, President of the Deaf Association of Quezon Province Inc., Disney Aguila, a volunteer at Love Yourself Inc. and treasurer of the Philippine Sports Federation of the Deaf, and Louis Christian B. Decara, President of the Philippine Federation of the Deaf Youth Section. Their talks focused more on the empowerment of the Deaf youth, as well as the understanding and sharing of their identities and culture. They encouraged the audience to be more active within the Deaf community by joining organizations and connecting with others. 


Nearing the finale of the summit, Ms. Anya Kristina Arce, the Chairperson for Deaf Studies, gave a video message showcasing an overview of the Bachelor of Applied and Deaf Studies in Benilde. The video covered the program's purpose, the units and courses offered, and the goals for the graduates.


Different aspects of SDEAS were also highlighted; among these were community interactions and education through experience, led by Dr. Marian Patricia Bea Francisco, Director of the Center for Deaf Esteem and Formation (CDEAF); SDEAS support centers, led by Mr. Sherlo Reyes, Director of the Center for Partnership and Development (CPD); admission concerns, led by Mr. Royce Hernandez, Director of the Office of Admissions; and scholarship grants, led by Ms. Maricris Mercado, Coordinator of the Center for Scholarships and Grants (CSAG). 


Testimonials were also given by Jolina Saavedra, Vice President of the Benildean Deaf Association (BDA), and Ms. Elizabeth Gonzales, a representative from Benildean Parents in Action (Be-PIA). To wrap up the event, Mr. Reyes delivered the closing remarks.


The summit will be held in Cebu on Feb. 27 to 28, Bacolod on March 4, Bicol on March 11, and Davao on March 18. Senior High School students are encouraged to come, alongside their parents, at no registration charge. 


Updates regarding the event can be found on the Benilde SDEAS Facebook page.

Last updated: Thursday, 16 February 2023