DAVAO CITY—Through local student Dann Lawrence Ilabore, the Philippines won a bronze medal in the International Geography Olympiad in Belgrade, Serbia from Aug. 2 to 8, an event attended by 161 students from 41 countries.
Ilabore, 17, a Grade 12 student of the Philippine Science High School Southern Mindanao campus, eventually ranked 67th out of the 161 students who joined the yearly competition.
Ilabore excelled in the written exam, response test, field work, and multimedia test, making him the sole medalist for team Philippines.
Ilabore admitted that winning the Philippine Geography Olympiad was already a sweet victory for him, especially since he doesn’t have a strong background in geography.
“Given the circumstances, and the lack of background and formal education in geography, being here is a success, and wining bronze medal makes this success even sweeter,” he said.
According to Ilabore’s coach, Jefferson Nuṅeza, the student had a hard time preparing for the competition, and even had a joint review session with three other teammates at the PSHS main campus in Quezon City to better prepare himself.
Although the team had 4 students, each student was scored individually in the competition. Jon Edilpert Murano, Uriel Victor Escobido and Aldwin Adiong also represented the Philippines.
“We had review sessions and they were somehow exposed to field work. We tried to follow the type of exam in the ‘igeo’ (International Geography),” Nuṅeza said.
“The competition was very challenging for us, especially that in Phil Sci, our curriculum doesn’t include geography, and we coaches aren’t geography majors,” he added.