The team from UP Visayas, composed of newly graduated BS Chemistry students Steve Turita, Lorraine Ann Mana-ay, and Maridel Somejo, was declared one of the top three awardees in the 2022 BPI-DOST Innovation Awards during the awarding ceremony on Oct. 28, 2022.
The innovation project was titled "Carbon Quantum Dots as Innovative Materials for Detection and Removal of Selected Aquatic Pollutants." The project, as cited by the BPI Foundation media release, "aims to explore the potential application of nanomaterials as nanocatalyst for photodegradation of harmful organic pollutant and as a nanoprobe for the detection of heavy metals in aquatic environments."
Along with UP Visayas in the top three are the University of Santo Tomas and Saint Louis University. The top three winners were awarded cash prizes of Php100,000 each. Other finalists from Ateneo de Manila University, Mariano Marcos State University, Mindanao State University - Iligan Institute of Technology, Philippine Normal University, and the University of San Carlos.
The project is under the mentorship of Dr. Concepcion Ponce and Asst. Prof. Arnold Gaje of the UPV Department of Chemistry.
The BPI–DOST Innovation Awards, in partnership with the Department of Science and Technology – Science Education Institute (DOST-SEI), is a competition that challenges Filipino students of Basic and Applied Sciences to actively participate in resolving the country's most pressing socio-economic problems.