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New gumamela hybrid named after Education Secretary Leonor Briones

/ 03:40 PM October 16, 2021
A new hybrid of gumamela is named after Education Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones for her contributions to society.

Education Secretary Leonor Briones. (File photo by GRIG C. MONTEGRANDE / Philippine Daily Inquirer)

MANILA, Philippines — A new hybrid of gumamela is named after Education Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones for her huge contributions to the society.

The University of the Philippines-Los Baños’ Women in Public Service named Gumamela or “Hibiscus rosa-sinensis” in Briones’ honor.

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The newest Hibiscus rosa-sinensis “Leonor M. Briones” was developed by the Institute of Plant Breeding (IPB).

It was formally presented and awarded to her this Saturday.

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“I am humbled and deeply honored to have a wonderful variant of Gumamela named after me,” Briones said in a statement.

“As a nature lover and educator, I appreciate UPLB’s Women in Public Service series that recognizes outstanding Filipino women in government,” she added.

Secretary Briones was nominated by Dr. Glenn Gregorio, Director of Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture, and was duly endorsed by the UPLB Screening Committee on naming Hibiscus, Mussaenda, and other Ornamental Plants.

Being a teacher for most of her life, the 81-year-old education secretary has taught young children in church schools as well as students in undergraduate, master’s, and doctoral studies.

For this, she was conferred as a Professor Emeritus of the University of the Philippines – National College of Public Administration and Governance.

The incumbent education secretary also spearheaded the Sulong EduKalidad campaign in light of the dropping performance of Filipino students in various international assessments.

It was also in Briones’ time when the unprecedented blended distance learning was implemented amid the raging COVID-19 pandemic.

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