OWWA Mariner’s Dugtong Aral (MDA Bridging) Program – How to Apply

The OWWA – Mariner’s Dugtong Aral (Bridging) Program (MDA) is an educational scholarship program established by the Overseas Workers Welfare Association (OWWA) to assist Filipino seafarers who aspire to pursue marine engineering courses and eventually become marine officers. The program aims to bridge the financial gap and provide opportunities for aspiring seafarers who cannot afford the costs associated with marine education. OWWA Mariner’s Dugtong Aral (MDA Bridging) Program – How to Apply

If you are interested in applying for the OWWA – Mariner’s Dugtong Aral Program, the following information will guide you through the application process:

  1. Eligibility:
    • You must be a Filipino citizen and an active member of the OWWA.
    • You should have at least one (1) recorded membership contribution to the OWWA.
    • You must be a high school graduate or possess an equivalent certification recognized by the Department of Education.
    • You should meet the specific eligibility requirements set by the participating maritime institution.
  2. Required Documents:
    • Accomplished application form (available at the OWWA office or their website)
    • Proof of OWWA membership (e.g., OWWA membership record or receipt)
    • High school diploma or equivalent certification
    • Transcript of records (if applicable)
    • Certificate of Good Moral Character
    • Birth certificate (original and photocopy)
    • Valid identification cards
  3. Application Process:
    • Visit the nearest OWWA Regional Welfare Office (RWO) or the OWWA main office to obtain an application form. Alternatively, you can download the form from the official OWWA website.
    • Complete the application form and attach the required documents.
    • Submit the application form and documents to the OWWA RWO or main office within the specified application period.
    • Pay any necessary processing fees, if applicable.
  4. Selection and Approval:
    • The OWWA will review the submitted applications and select qualified candidates based on the eligibility criteria and available slots.
    • Shortlisted applicants may be required to undergo further assessments or interviews.
    • Successful applicants will be notified by the OWWA regarding their selection and further instructions.
  5. Scholarship Benefits:
    • The OWWA – Mariner’s Dugtong Aral Program covers tuition fees, miscellaneous fees, and other related educational expenses.
    • Scholars may also receive a monthly stipend to support their living expenses during the duration of their studies.
    • The scholarship may include other benefits such as medical and accident insurance coverage.

It is important to note that the specific details and requirements of the OWWA – Mariner’s Dugtong Aral Program may be subject to change. Therefore, it is recommended to visit the official OWWA website or contact their office directly for the most up-to-date information and guidance on the application process.

Remember, the OWWA – Mariner’s Dugtong Aral Program aims to provide educational opportunities to aspiring seafarers who have financial constraints. If you or someone you know is interested in pursuing a career in marine engineering, this program can be a valuable opportunity to fulfill that dream.

What is the OWWA – Mariner’s Dugtong Aral (Bridging) Program (MDA)?

The OWWA-Mariner’s Dugtong Aral (Bridging) Program (MDA) is a scholarship program designed for individuals aspiring to become seafarers and are currently pursuing mechanical engineering or electrical engineering degrees. The program aims to support these engineering students in studying marine engineering and ultimately becoming marine officers upon passing the licensure examination.

The primary objective of this bridging program is to assist selected engineering students who have the ambition to pursue a career in the maritime industry. The program provides financial assistance to help alleviate the burden of educational expenses. By offering this support, the program significantly aids aspiring mariners in getting closer to fulfilling their dreams.


  1. Educational Assistance: Beneficiaries can avail themselves of educational assistance with a maximum amount of Php 38,120 in Philippine currency. This financial support can be utilized to cover tuition fees, books, supplies, and other related expenses necessary for their chosen course.
  2. Stipend: Beneficiaries will receive a three-month stipend amounting to Php 15,000. This stipend aims to provide financial support during their training period and help cover their basic needs.
  3. Career Opportunities: Upon completing their chosen course, beneficiaries have the opportunity to become marine officers and board ocean vessels. This career path allows them to pursue a rewarding profession in the maritime industry, offering various job opportunities and the chance to work on international waters.

The MDA Bridging Program aims to empower individuals by providing them with financial assistance for education, a stipend for sustenance, and a pathway to a promising career in the maritime industry.


The following is the list of qualification requirements that the aspiring seafarer must meet to be qualified in the program.

  1. The applicants must be Filipino citizens.
  2. They must be active members of the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) and must also be OFW-seafarers.
  3. The beneficiaries of OFWs who are active or former members of OWWA are also eligible.
  4. For single OFWs, their siblings or nieces under the age of 30 years old can be considered as beneficiaries. However, for married OFWs, their dependents can be their single child who is under the age of 30 years old.
  5. Graduates of Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering (BSME) or Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering (BSEE) are qualified to apply.


For individuals aspiring to pursue a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering (ME) and have the goal of becoming a marine officer in the future, the following list of documents is required to apply for the OWWA-Mariner’s Dugtong Aral (Bridging) Program (MDA):

  1. Complete the Scholarship Application Form for the program.
  2. Provide two copies of a 2×2 ID picture with a white background.
  3. Submit proof of relationship to the Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW), such as the child’s birth certificate if the active OWWA member or OFW is the parent or married, and a Certificate of No Marriage (CENOMAR) of the OFW’s sibling if the active OWWA member is single.
  4. Include your Transcript of Records.
  5. Provide proof of residency.
  6. Show evidence of being an active OWWA member, which can be done through the official receipt of OWWA contribution where your membership status is indicated.
  7. Submit a declaration form stating that there are no pending scholarship applications with OWWA or other government or non-government agencies.
  8. Include a copy of your passport or Seafarer’s ID and Record Book.


here is the step-by-step process and instructions for aspiring OFW seafarers who want to apply for the Mariner’s Dugtong Aral (Bridging) (MDA) Program:

Step 1: Visit the nearest OWWA office in your area to obtain an application form. Alternatively, you can visit their website at www.owwa.gov.ph or their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/OWWAofficial. For inquiries, you may also call their OWWA hotline at 1348.

Step 2: Complete all the required information in the application form and gather all the necessary documentary requirements. Make sure to double-check that all the attached documents are complete and accurate.

Step 3: Submit your application form and required documents to the nearest OWWA Regional Office (RWO).

Step 4: Wait for a response from an authorized OWWA representative. This response can come in the form of a call, text message, or email, and it will confirm whether you have secured a slot in the MDA program.

Step 5: Once your application is accepted, you will receive a copy of the MDA program Scholarship Agreement Form via email. This form is downloadable and printable.

Step 6: Print, sign, and notarize the Scholarship Agreement Form. Send the signed form back to the nearest OWWA RWO for confirmation. You can use a Courier Service to send the document.

Step 7: The announcement of eligible grantees or beneficiaries of the MDA program will be made at a later date. Stay updated with the announcements from OWWA.

Step 8: If you are selected as one of the eligible beneficiaries, you will receive a Notice of Award (NOA) from OWWA.

Remember to follow all the instructions carefully and keep track of any updates or announcements from OWWA regarding the MDA program. Good luck with your application!

Important Reminders

Attached are the important points that aspiring mariners must remember particularly if you are applying to the OWWA- Mariner’s Dugtong Aral (Bridging) Program (MDA).

the qualification requirements before applying for the scholarship grant. Doing so will help you understand who is eligible and prevent errors during the application process. Applicants with complete documentary requirements will be considered for the scholarship and will be given priority in securing slots. Therefore, ensure that you have all the necessary documents before submitting your application.

To receive updates and notifications regarding your application, provide accurate contact information such as your email address or cell phone number. This will help you avoid receiving misleading information. The Notice of Award (NOA), which confirms your application process, is valid for 45 days from the date of acceptance. If you are interested in the scholarship program and have received the NOA, make sure not to miss this opportunity, as you will not receive another NOA if you fail to utilize it. You will have to wait for another scheduled appointment to obtain a new one. Remember that opportunities come once, so it is important to seize them.

After your application is deemed valid, you will receive the downloadable and printable scholarship agreement. This agreement must be notarized and signed before being returned to the Regional Welfare Office (RWO).

The OWWA (Overseas Workers Welfare Administration) will announce the eligible beneficiaries who qualify for the OWWA-Mariner’s Dugtong Aral (Bridging) (MDA) scholarship grant.

If you become an eligible beneficiary of the program, your monetary assistance will be transferred to your bank account. Therefore, it is advisable to have a bank account in your name.

Please note that the program will only cover a maximum amount of Php 38,120 in Philippine currency. This financial grant will not cover the entire cost of your intended school fees or training course. Any expenses exceeding the covered amount will be the responsibility of the applicants.


insightful and helpful as it will provide you with detailed information and an in-depth understanding of the other OWWA benefits for Seaman and overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) including the OWWA scholarship program, the OWWA- Mariner’s Dugtong Aral (Bridging) Program.

This video aims to provide you with additional information about the benefits and advantages available, particularly for seamen/OFWs who are active members of the Overseas Workers Welfare Association (OWWA). It is recommended that you watch this video to learn more about the monetary assistance, scholarships, and other programs offered by OWWA. By doing so, you can become aware of the privileges you may qualify for and apply to.

Moreover, this video is particularly helpful for OFWs who are unaware of the programs provided by OWWA. If you have a family member who is an overseas Filipino worker, currently working abroad, it is advised to visit OWWA’s official website at https://owwa.gov.ph/ to gain more information about the scholarship programs and other monetary assistance exclusively available to active OWWA members.

As an OFW, it is crucial to be mindful of the benefits and allowances provided by OWWA because the organization prioritizes the welfare and well-being of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs). One of the ways they demonstrate this concern is through the various programs and assistance they offer to all OFWs.

If you wish to learn more about the benefits offered by OWWA, please visit https://owwa.gov.ph/ and read about the exclusive advantages you may receive by applying to any of their programs for OFW dependents.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. I am interested in applying for the scholarship grant I have more questions about OWWA- Mariner’s Dugtong Aral (Bridging) Program (MDA). Is there anyone whom I can reach out to follow up for further assistance?

If you are an interested applicant and require further assistance or have more questions about the scholarship program, you can reach out to them via email at owwacares@owwa.gov.ph. Alternatively, you may contact them through their Hotline numbers: 1348 and (02) 1348 (OWWA Regional Hotline) for local inquiries, and (+632) 1348 for international OWWA Hotline.

If you reside in Manila, you can also visit their office located at F.B. Harrison St., Pasay, Metro Manila. Additionally, you can connect with them on their Facebook page at https://web.facebook.com/OWWAofficial or visit their official OWWA website at https://owwa.gov.ph/. Moreover, you have the option to download and install the OWWA Mobile App from the Google Play Store or Apple Store to stay updated on the latest OWWA projects and programs.

2. Is it required to be an OWWA member if you are an OFW dependent upon accepting the scholarship grant?

It is not required for the dependent of an overseas Filipino worker (OFW) to be a member of the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) when accepting a scholarship grant. However, it is important to have proof of the relationship to an active OWWA member and to meet the qualification standards set for dependents. While it is not mandatory, the OWWA encourages individuals to become members if they plan to work overseas after completing their course. By becoming an OWWA member, you and your family can potentially avail the benefits offered to Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) in the future. Ultimately, the decision to become an OWWA member or not is up to you.

3. I am a married OWWA member. I and my husband are active members of OWWA, can we have more than one dependent who can avail of the scholarship?

If you are married and both you and your partner are active members of the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA), you are not eligible to have more than one dependent. This is applicable to the OWWA scholarship program as well. In line with other OWWA scholarship programs, married Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) who are both active OWWA members are entitled to have only one dependent in order to qualify for the scholarship program.

4. Am I qualified to apply to OWWA – Mariner’s Dugtong Aral (Bridging) Program (MDA) if I already have an existing OWWA scholarship?

You are not qualified to apply because the OWWA – Mariner’s Dugtong Aral (Bridging) Program (MDA) is only a one-time scholarship grant for those qualified aspirants who wish to Study Bachelor of Science in Marine Engineering (BSMarE). Additionally, if you have a pending or you have an existing scholarship grant in OWWA, you are also not entitled to avail of this educational scholarship program.

5. Can I apply for the scholarship program if the cost of the training course I’ve chosen exceeds the coverage amount of the educational scholarship grant?

“If you meet the qualifications and are interested in applying for the educational scholarship program, you can still do so. However, it’s important to note that you will be responsible for any additional expenses and school fees that go beyond the amount covered by the program, which is Php 38,120.

6. How do I know the status of my application status considering that there are so many applicants too?

In terms of monitoring the status of your application, the applicants will receive a serial reference number or what they call a tracking number via text SMS, or email for you to monitor their application status.

7. How long is the validity of the MDA Notice of Award (NOA)? Does it expire?

The Notice of Award (NOA) for the MDA program is only valid for 45 days from the date of acceptance. If you are eligible to receive the benefits of the program, it is important to utilize the NOA within this specified timeframe. If, for any reason, you are unable to use the NOA within the given time limit, you will not receive another NOA and will have to wait until the next scheduled appointment.

8. Is the Mariner’s Dugtong Aral (Bridging) Program (MDA) exclusive to engineering students?

The MDA program is tailored for individuals who have graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in either Mechanical Engineering (BS ME) or Electrical Engineering (BS EE) and are interested in pursuing a career as a marine officer on an ocean-going vessel. The program involves completing a Bachelor’s degree in Marine Engineering and successfully passing the licensure examination. It is also open to active Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) who are already employed as seafarers, provided that they hold a degree in either BS EE or BS ME.

9. Is the Mariner’s Dugtong Aral (Bridging) Program (MDA) a recurring one like the other OWWA scholarship programs?

The MDA (Medial and Dental Assistance) program, unfortunately, is not a recurring scholarship grant. It is a one-time scholarship grant that provides financial assistance of Php 38,120. Although the program is limited to a single grant, the benefits for each applicant can vary, depending on the review and assessment conducted by the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) and other relevant agencies.


This is the process of applying for the OWWA-Mariner’s Dugtong Aral (Bridging) Program (MDA), a program designed to help aspiring engineering students become marine engineers and work on ocean vessels upon completion of their training course. To apply, make sure you have all the required documents and submit a completed application.

If you have dreams of becoming a marine seafarer and want to pursue a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering (ME), the MDA program offers a great opportunity to achieve your goal of becoming a marine officer. Don’t miss out on this opportunity.

When applying for the MDA program, this article aims to provide you with helpful information. You can also find more details about the MDA program here: [link]. Additionally, you can visit the official website of the Overseas Workers Welfare Association (OWWA) to explore other scholarship programs they offer. Bon Voyage, future mariners

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