MSGC batch 2014


Robin (Robin) F. Albinto graduated with a degree in B.S. Biology from Central Luzon State University, Science City of Munoz, Nueva Ecija. He is a member of the Volunteer Youth Leaders for Health Philippines (VYLH), a proactive network of youth leaders with the advocacies of promoting public awareness on newborn screening and folic acid supplementation among women, and lobbying support for the passage of Rare Disease Bill in the country. His research interests are on oncogenetics and on genetic disorders in the Philippines that affect children. Through this course, he eventually wants to contribute in the expansion of medical genetics in the country through research.

Evangeline (Van) A. Alcabasa earned her B.S in Nursing degree from the University of Perpetual Help System Laguna in 2012. Through her experience as a registered nurse for almost two years, she saw the lack of awareness of the community when it comes to their health. This led her to enroll in a graduate program that ensures each individual is provided facts on the occurrence of a genetic disease in the family. Her topic research would focus on the occurrence of blood and bone marrow related cancers among elderly patients.

Renzel May (Elmay) Boado earned her B.S. in Nursing degree from the University of the East Ramon Magsaysay Memorial Medical Center in 2011. To find more than what the traditional nursing can offer, she worked as a behavioral therapist for special children which mounted her interest in congenital malformations. Because of her patient encounters, she looks forward in focusing more about preconception genetic counseling. She also wishes to focus on research about the importance of genetic counseling in the management of genetic disorders

Kristian Dior (Dior) V. Capili received his B.S. Nursing degree from Trinity University of Asia – St. Luke's College of Nursing in 2012. He is currently working as an intensive care nurse at Cardinal Santos Medical Center. As a nurse intensivist, he wants to provide the optimum health care to a critically ill patient, understand complex diseases, and help the parents of his patients understand how a certain disease can be passed on from one generation to another. In pursuit of his personal growth and his hopes to further his knowledge, he decided to take up MS Genetic Counseling. He is interested in the legal and social implications of genetic test results in the family and in the child. He is likewise interested in concerns relating to neurogenetics.

Maria Clarissa (Clarisse/Risa) Del Moral, ORA earned her bachelor’s and master’s degree in Psychology from University of the Philippines Diliman. Her training as a psychologist exposed her to clients with various neuropsychological disorders, which bolstered her interest in the fields of psychiatry and neuroscience. She is a consultant psychologist and a neuroscience researcher at the Memory Center of St. Luke’s Medical Center (SLMC). Recently, she received a DOST-PCHRD grant to investigate mild cognitive impairment in the Filipino elderly. She is also a research collaborator in several other DOST-PCHRD and SLMC-funded projects

Ma. Theresa (Tere) Domine is a graduate of BS Biology from the University of the Philippines Baguio. She looks forward to doing research on genetic neurological disorders especially on familial Alzheimer's disease and other cognitive disorders. As one of the future genetic counselors, she hopes to influence policy leaders to bridge the gap between genetics research and healthcare service in the country.

Niecy Grace (Nice) M. Ganza obtained her B.S. Nursing degree from Silliman University, Dumaguete City. Nice worked as a volunteer nurse and spent her clinical rotations in the emergency room, pediatrics, and Underfive clinic. She wants to specialize in cardiovascular genetics and is also interested in pediatric genetic disorders. Furthermore, she aims to promote the awareness of genetic disorders in her own province, Negros Occidental, and in the Visayas Region.

Frances Isabelle (Tata) B. Jacalan obtained her degree in Bachelor of Science in Medical Technology from Saint Louis University in 2004.  She is currently a Science Research Specialist I at the FNRI-DOST under the Nutrigenomics R&D Program.  Right now, she is interested in conducting genetic researches that aim to test the associations of gene variants with the dietary, biochemical, and clinical component among diseased and healthy individuals.  An advocate of continuing education, Tata plans to share all her learnings in genetic counseling thru the academe and actualize the conduct and implementation of a genomic-based dietary counseling program.

John Benedict (Ben) B. Lagarde earned his B.S. in Nursing degree from West Visayas State University last March 2014 and passed the nursing licensure exam on June of the same year. He is interested in specializing in the fields of oncogenetics and pharmacogenetics. Benedict wants to explore the emerging role and impact of genetic counseling as part of the primary preventive measure for individuals at higher risk of acquiring familial cancer among Filipinos. He also wishes to contribute in the awareness of cancer genetic counseling in the country, especially to his fellow Ilonggos.


Roxanne Janica (Rox) E. Merencilla graduated from St. Paul University Manila with a degree in B.S. in Nursing. She is currently working as a nurse at the Institute of Human Genetics in UP Manila. Her involvement in the Birth Defects Surveillance Project, the clinical genetics clinic, and the management of newborn screening patients led her in taking the program to be a more effective nurse when dealing with her patients. Aside from being interested in pursuing a practice in metabolic and cancer-related genetic disorders, Roxanne aspires to contribute to establishing a firm ground of genetics nursing in the Philippines.

Kristine Dawn (Tin) Morales obtained her B.S. degree in nursing from West Visayas State University. She graduated last March 2014 and passed the Philippine Nursing Licensure Examination on the same year. Her passion for learning and personal growth motivated her to pursue MS in genetic counseling. Her research interest primarily focuses on genetic and psychosocial issues related to neurology and developmental and behavioral pediatrics. Furthermore, she envisions to help in increase the awareness of her fellow Visayans regarding genetic disorders.

Katrina May (Kat) Ojo is a graduate of BS Psychology from Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila. Currently, she works at the Institute of Human Genetics as part of the General Administration Unit. Her active involvement in civic works through Compassion and Responsibility for Animals (CARA), Museo Pambata Foundation Inc., & Volunteer Youth Leaders for Health (VYLH) made her want to pursue a career that will incorporate her advocacies, love for challenge and interests in ethics and societal issues. In the near future, Kat intends to concentrate on prenatal genetic counseling and fetal abnormalities venturing on the clinical and teaching aspect of the profession.


Maria Lea (Lea) Pineda-Ramiro obtained her B.S. Management degree from the Ateneo de Manila University. She also pursued a career in human resources management with an expertise on the development of competency-based training programs and documentation of quality management systems. Her acceptance in the M.S. Genetic Counseling program is the fulfillment of her dream to be in the field of science and her transition to a life of service. Lea looks forward to being part of the pioneering team in Mindanao as an educator-trainer.  She is interested to study pre-conception and prenatal counseling and would like to devote time to research on developing culture-sensitive approaches in genetic counseling within the Philippine context. 

Dione (Di) Parreno-Sacdalan is a practicing Colorectal Surgeon and a Clinical Associate Professor in the UP College of Medicine. She finished BS Psychology in UP Diliman, pursued a medical degree in the UP College of Medicine then underwent training in General and Colorectal Surgery at the Philippine General Hospital. She has special interests in colorectal cancer and heads the UP-PGH Colorectal Polyp and Cancer Study Group, a multi-disciplinary group of health professionals involved in the care of colorectal cancer patients. She envisions genetic counselling as an integral part of individualized cancer management and hopes to incorporate it in programs for early cancer detection and prevention.