- Five females made it to the top 10 of PMA’s MABALASIK class of 2019
- This is the first time in history that half of the PMA’s top 10 graduates are female
- President Rodrigo Duterte is expected to commission the members of the class as junior officers on May 26
Five in the top 10 of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) MABALASIK (Mandirigma ng Bayan, Iaalay ang Sarili, Lakas at Tapang, Para sa Kapayapaan) Class of 2019 graduates are female; the first time in history.
The five female top graduates are Cdt. 1Cl Dionne Mae Apolog Umalla (1st), Cdt. 1st Cl Jahziel Gumapac Tandoc (3rd), Cdt. 1st Cl Marnel Dinihay Fundales (7th), Cdt. 1st Cl Glyn Elinor Buansi Marapao (8th), and Cdt. 1Cl Ruth Angelique Ricardo Pasos (9th).
Moreover, Umalla is also the fifth female graduate who topped the premiere military academy since the law allowing women to join PMA in 1993.
“It’s not a matter of gender but of performance. It also shows that while males have the advantage of physical strength, females can be just as good,” she said.
This year, PMA has 263 graduates and 73 of which are female, as per Inquirer.
President Rodrigo Duterte is expected to commission the members of the class as junior officers on May 26.
The batch is the first to finish in the month of May instead of March after the academic calendar shifted to follow the K-12 system.
CNN Philippines disclosed that Lt. Gen. Ronnie Evangelista said half of the top graduates this year are women due to their competitive attitude. He added, only 80 slots are allotted to women in the PMA, so only the best of their class.
“Because the stringent process of determining the number of females coming in is more tedious because they have fi
ght like for instance 400 coming in 80 are females so the number of female applicants will fi ght for 80 slots, they are more competitive,” Evangelista said.