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Sign language interpreting has yet to be considered a legitimate profession in the Philippines. This is because of the absence of a state accreditation system for those working as interpreters along with the limited professional development opportunities and educational programs for aspiring sign language interpreters (SLIs).

On top of that, the majority of sign language interpreters are not seen as professionals worthy of respect within the collective consciousness of many Filipinos. This results in Filipino Sign Language (FSL) along with interpreters being the subject of mockery on several occasions – when then presidential communications assistant secretary Mocha Uson and her blogger friend used sign language as a joke, and also when some netizens joked about how interpreters looked like they were “doing Tiktok.”

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With the ease in restrictions from the onslaught of the COVID-19 Pandemic, the School of Deaf Education and Applied Sciences (SDEAS) is happy to celebrate their 28th Deaf Festival with a hybrid set-up this time. 

For the past 2 years, this month-long festivity was only held virtually. But now, with the COVID-19 protocols loosening up in the country, the institution, its students, along with the Filipino Deaf Community are looking forward to celebrating it.

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The De La Salle College of St. Benilde – School of Deaf Education and Applied Studies (SDEAS) opens its doors to young Deaf leaders and aspiring hearing sign language interpreters.

SDEAS takes pride in two of the programs that they offer to the public: Bachelor in Applied Deaf Studies and Bachelor in Sign Language Interpretation.

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Caravan Food Group, Inc. (FGI), the company who owns Elait and Overdoughs, together with the De La Salle College of St. Benilde – School of Deaf Education and Applied Studies (DLS-CSB SDEAS), spearheaded the seminars for more than 40 people – 20 people per seminar along with their companions – who registered online. 

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Dr. Marian Patricia Bea Francisco, Ms. Rochelle Mendoza Martin, Mr. Leonides Sulse, and Ms. Agnes Canayon successfully presented the results of their research entitled, “Online Learning During the Pandemic: Perceptions and Experiences of Teachers and
Deaf Students in College,” during the recently concluded 2022 (American Educational Research Association) AERA Annual Meeting in San Diego, CA, last April 21-26, 2022.

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Dx. Raphael ‘Rafa’ Vergel de Dios Domingo, Deaf, non-binary, pronoun: “siya” (as signed in Filipino Sign Language). This is how Dx. Domingo chose to introduce Rafa in an email interview. As the first Ph.D. recipient in the World Deaf Leadership Scholarship Program, Rafa proudly wore an LGBTIA and People of Color stole during Gallaudet University’s 2022 Graduation.

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