MINDANAO inventors, innovators and student researchers are currently showcasing their latest products and researches in this year's Mindanao Invention Contest and Exposition (Mice 2010), which runs from July 22 to 25 in Davao City.

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The Mindanao Cluster of the Department of Science and Technology in cooperation with the Technology Application and Promotion Institute (Tapi-DOST) led on Thursday the opening ceremony of Mice at NCCC Mall Activity Center.

DOST-Davao Regional Director Anthony Sales said Mice is an annual activity that "features the latest inventions and innovations of inventors, would-be inventors and innovators such as student researchers from all over Mindanao."

Vying for this year's contest are 56 entries from the various academic institutions, professionals, creative researchers, inventors and innovators from Zamboanga Peninsula, Northern Mindanao, Davao Region, Soccsksargen, and Caraga.

According to the DOST, these entries "passed the pre-screening conducted by the Contest and Awards Committee for Mice 2010's five categories."

From the total qualified entries, DOST said three will compete under the Invention Category, of which winning entry will be conferred of the Tuklas Award.

Another five entries fall under the Utility Model Category, and 27 will compete under the Creative Research Category to get the Likha Award.

DOST also reported there are 17 students vying under the Creative Research Category for high school, and three made it to the Creative Research Category for college. Winning entries for both categories will each be conferred of the Sibol Award.

Virgilio Sangutan, president of Davao Inventors Association, said that they were glad of the total number of entries for this year's Mice, which carries the theme, "Filipino Inventions and Innovations: The Way Forward."

In his message during the opening ceremony, Sangutan noted an outstanding number of entries for the Sibol categories. "This is a remarkable indication of the research initiatives of our students from all over Mindanao," he said.

He added "this is also a good indication of the support that the Mindanao academic institutions give to our high school and college students who have the passion for research and invention."