DAGUPAN CITY – At least 20,000 elementary and high school students from both public and private schools here graced the opening day of the three-day Children Summit on Journalism and exhibits at CSI Stadia on January 29.

The opening ceremony was led by Mayor Belen T. Fernandez and Schools Division Superintendent Dr. Lorna G. Bugayong with Manlingkor Ya Kalangweran 2017 little mayor Jilian Kay Madison Fernandez who delivered her welcome remarks and Fourth District Representative Christopher De Venecia as  keynote speaker.

In his speech, De Venecia, a columnist of the Philippine Star and Chalk Magazine, also shared his skills on feature writing as one of the invited resource speakers during the plenary session.

In the afternoon, the participants attended lectures on news writing with Eva Visperas of The Philippine Star, Frank Cimatu on editorial writing, Velia Umanos on feature writing and Gabriel Cardinoza on Science and Technology writing.

“This Children’s Summit on Journalism is our continuing vote of confidence that the young people of Dagupan hold so much promise in bringing positive change for our city. As future journalists of Dagupan, we want to nurture a new breed of young active citizens who can move others to seek and pursue positive change,” said Fernandez.

Fernandez added that she wants future Dagupeños to be able to express and articulate in varied forms the kind of change that embraces the ideals of truth, justice, fairness, among other lofty values.

“It is my fervent wish that through this summit, we shall be able to produce a great pipeline of future leaders of the city who shall work for growth and progress, and shall be a positive influence for other Dagupeños to pursue the same,” she said.

As city mayor, Fernandez has given her strongest support to youth development in many areas like sports, culture and the arts, music, health and nutrition, disaster preparedness, peace and drug abuse prevention, special skills like robotics.

This year, the city together with the Dagupan City Schools Division have joined forces together to affirm and to continue with a shared mission to make the young Dagupeños still the happiest, the healthiest, the safest among other young people in the country, the mayor said. (Joseph C. Bacani/CIO/Jan. 29, 2018)