MANILA – Some 19 Filipino students on internships returned home from Hanoi, Vietnam amid the coronavirus pandemic, the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) said Sunday.

This second batch of Filipino students is part of the 143 Filipinos repatriated by the Philippine Embassy in Vietnam on April 18, 2020.

They are completing their internships, on-the-job trainings (OJT), and scholarships abroad when the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) was announced by President Rodrigo Roa Duterte on March 15, 2020.

An initial batch of 13 student interns from Vietnam and Japan was successfully repatriated home last March 2020.

The Department of Foreign Affairs through the Philippine Embassy in Vietnam, arranged a repatriation flight for the 19 students who arrived on April 18, 2020.

They are students from Cavite State University (CavSU), Ifugao State University (IfSU), and Palawan State University (PSU) doing their student internship in Vietnam until May 2020, but their internship was cut short due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The six student interns from CavSU will be able to go back to their residences and undergo their quarantine there.

However, the remaining 13 student interns from PSU and IfSU will have to be quarantined in Metro Manila.

CavSU students reached Cavite which is near the airport while those from Ifugao cannot go home due to the lockdown. There are no flights to Palawan.

“The Commission thanks the DFA and DOLE for their continuing assistance in repatriating our students from Vietnam. CHED and DOLE are continuously cooperating to provide the necessary assistance to returning student interns and scholars,” CHED Chairman J. Prospero E. De Vera III said.

According to De Vera, their respective universities will pay for their hotel and food while on quarantine.

“There are still many Filipino students abroad who are planning to go home in the next three months. CHED will continue to work with other government agencies to bring them home to their families,” de Vera added. (PR)

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