The Foreign Service Institute (FSI) successfully conducted its latest Pre-Departure Orientation Seminar (PDOS) for officers and staff of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) and other government agencies who are set for their first overseas diplomatic and consular assignments.
Thirty-six officers and staff benefited from FSI’s PDOS, which was conducted on 15 – 30 April, 2019: from the DFA, 11; Department of Labor and Employment, 10; Department of National Defense, five (5); Philippine National Police, three (3); Department of Trade and Industry, two (2); Social Security System, two (2); Overseas Workers Welfare Administration, two (2), and the Philippine Coast Guard, one (1).
The two-week seminar provided the participants an orientation on the functions and operations of foreign service establishments and basic information on preparing for diplomatic or consular post. It also equipped them with basic tools for responding to various challenges when relocating to a foreign environment.
Topics discussed included: Advancing Philippine Foreign Policy and Interests through One Country Team Approach; Structure and Operations in the Foreign Service Posts; Briefings on ASEAN, UN and APEC; Protocol: Effective Self-Presentation and Social Graces; Public Diplomacy; Cultural Diplomacy; Managing and Organizing Events at Post; Diplomatic Immunities and Privileges, and Assistance-to-Nationals.
The Pre-Departure Orientation Seminar for Spouses of Foreign Service Personnel was also conducted on 24 April 2019 from 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
The PDOS for spouses of Foreign Service Personnel will equip them with skills that will help them fulfill their roles as spouses. This training is being offered in recognition of the spouses’ significant role as partners in the family and work life of foreign service personnel during their foreign assignments.
As spouses of foreign service personnel, they share in the task of projecting a good image of the Philippines, whether in formal functions, social gatherings, or any other occasion organized by the Post. They are also expected to apply the fundamental skills in protocol, social graces and etiquette.
This seminar aimed to inform them on the basic safety considerations in the foreign service, the privileges and immunities accorded to them and to the members of their families under the Vienna Conventions, the importance of financial literacy at Post, and the preparations to be undertaken prior to departure and arrangements upon arrival at Post.
There are still two PDOS scheduled for the year: 8 – 19 July and 7 – 18 October.