Another education and scholarship program provided by the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) is the Skills for Employment Scholarship Program (SESP). SESP is a scholarship grant that aims to provide educational support for both active OWWA OFW members and their qualified dependents who intend to or are currently enrolled in technical-vocational (tech-voc) courses.
Beneficiaries of the grant are assured of monetary assistance of up to PhP 14,500 per course. So if you are interested or you know OFWs who might be, let this article guide you through the process of applying for the SESP grant.
OWWA is mandated to provide and manage a wide array of benefits programs and services for millions of OFWs and their qualified dependents. These include educational grants such as the Skills for Employment Scholarship Program it is directed towards those who want to upskill and /or re-skill themselves in order to secure better employment opportunities.
After all, it is also OWWA’s goal to help create financially capable individuals by providing them with the knowledge and skills that they need to become competitive job applicants on the employment front.
Skills and Technical Vocational Courses
In partnership with the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), the program focuses on career enhancement and skills training for the following courses:
- Agriculture and Fishery
- Decorative crafts and Ceramics
- Processed Food and Beverages
- Gifts, Toys, and Houseware
- Tourism – Hotel and Restaurant
- Metals and Engineering
- Communication, Electronics & Information Technology
- Maritime Land Transport
- Health and Community Services
- Social and Personal Services
The SESP grants monetary assistance of up to PhP 14,500 per course, regardless of the length of the training program, to qualified beneficiaries. Taking additional courses will also help OFWs and dependents broaden and improve their skills and expertise, especially in those they would want to learn more or will be employed for.
Moreover, a National Certificate (NC I or NC II), which is issued by TESDA to their official graduates, is a standard requirement for skill-based jobs locally and abroad. Attaining such a certificate in accredited education and training institution will surely up your chances of getting employed and keeping your job.
To be qualified for the scholarship grant, an applicant must be:
- A resident of the Philippines
- At least high school graduate
- In good standing, whether the applicant is an OFW or a qualified dependent, in which case, shall be limited to the spouse, children or parents of the OFW.
- If the OFW is a single parent or married with children, a child can be a qualified dependent, given that they are under 21 years of age and not enrolled in another educational institution upon the time of application.
- If the OFW is single, a sibling can be a qualified dependent, given that they are no older than 24 years and are not enrolled in another educational institution upon the time of application.
- A passer of the TESDA qualifying assessment or the Multiple Aptitude Battery Test (MABT) of the preferred program. This is normally taken at the school of their choosing and is for free.
- For the OFW: an active member for at least one term or 2 years on record. For subsequent applications, the OFW must have a renewed membership for at least 3 terms or 6 years.
Eligible applicants must be prepared for application with the following documents:
- 2 sets of duly accomplished Application Form
- 2 copies of 1”x1” ID photo
- At least two (2) valid IDs
- Any of the following to certify OWWA membership:
- Official receipt of OWWA membership
- POEA verified contract
- Seaman’s book (for sea-based OFWs)
- Form 137, Transcript of Records or True Copy of Grades (TCG) from high school
- Proof of relationship to OFW member, if applicant is a dependent:
- Birth certificate of dependent, if dependent is a child of the OFW.
- Birth certificate of both OFW and dependent, if dependent is a sibling of the OFW.
- PSA-approved Certificate of No Marriage (CENOMAR), if the applicant is single.
How to Process SESP Scholarship Program
Upon completion of the documentary requirements, follow these steps to pursue your application for SESP:
- Go to the OWWA Regional Office that covers your area of residence to get an application form.
- Fill in all required information and attach the documentary requirements
- Present your ID at the Education and Training Unit. Once your identity and OFW membership are verified, submit your duly accomplished form.
- If approved, you will then be asked to return to the OWWA office to claim your Notice of Award (NOA) which you will then present to claim your grant. Approved applicants within NCR may claim their NOA two (2) working days after application in their local OWWA office, while approved applicants outside NCR may claim theirs after seven (7) working days.
Video: SESP Scholarship from OWWA
Check out this video from OWWA about the SESP program. The video clearly talks about this specific scholarship grant for Filipinos who want to enroll in accredited educational institution courses related to their specific skillset. Filipinos can upgrade their skills in order to have better jobs, in which case they will have a higher chance of being hired in highly-demanded positions in the country.
The scholarship is also open to OFWs who want to gain additional skills for their job abroad or to land back home with a more competitive edge over other applicants looking for local jobs.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Please check out these common questions and their answers about the SESP scholarship from OWWA.
1. What is OWWA SESP?
The Skills for Employment Scholarship Program (SESP) is a scholarship grant managed by OWWA in partnership with TESDA. It is designed to provide assistance to both OFW members and their qualified dependents who intend to or are currently enrolled in a technical-vocational program at an accredited educational institution or training center.
2. Who can apply for SESP?
Active OWWA OFW members who are either land or sea based, and are either on vacation or in-service and their qualified dependents, are eligible to apply for SESP. Qualified dependents may include the OFW member’s child, given that they are single and not older than 21 years if they are married or a single parent, or a sibling who is single and not older than 24 years if they are single or married without children.
3. How much is the scholarship grant? Is it for only one time?
Qualified beneficiaries may avail of a one-time grant of PhP 14,500 per course, regardless of the length of the training program. Subsequent applications are allowed, but subject to review and assessment by OWWA and concerned agencies.
4. Can inactive OFW members apply for the grant?
Only OFW members who have been active for at least one term (2 years) may apply for the scholarship grant. Subsequent applications require an active membership for at least 3 terms (6 years).
5. How often can I apply for the grant?
You are only allowed to apply for the grant once per filing period, and for only one qualified dependent, if you intend to apply on behalf of someone.
Needless to say, the SESP grant is another program that many of our fellow Filipinos can take advantage of. But more than that, the grant also helps promote technical-vocational courses and develop a greater awareness and understanding of skill-based labor, which makes for a big chunk of our economic and labor force.
The OWWA SESP scholarship program will be available to all OFWs and their qualified dependents. This will encourage them to take up skill-based courses, given that it is covered by the grant. Even if they are not currently employed–due to an injury or sickness for example–they can still avail of such scholarships.
For more inquiries on OWWA SESP and other scholarship programs, you may visit their website at www.owwa.gov.ph or their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/OWWAofficial. You may also download the OWWA Mobile App on Google Play and App Store to stay updated on their programs and releases.