Lilac Hosalla Schonberg is one of the engineers who wrote the innovation book as part of the Ministry of Education curriculum used by different schools and the only Filipina who works with the UAE innovation Ajman University national robotics competition in the Robotics Engineering and Information Technology field. Schonberg, a wife, mother, teacher, and cancer survivor, has been raising the Philippine flag in the UAE academe.
A graduate of Electronics and Communications Engineering major in Telecommunication VOIP Systems, she became a CISCO certified engineer after a couple of years, and recently she has completed her AI STEM Robotics Development course in the prestigious Oxford.
With a specific interest in innovation and technology, Schonberg said that her chosen field is so much aligned with everything she loved doing as a kid. “I am fascinated with building innovative toys using scrap materials. I first became interested in technology because I wanted to work with a company whose mission is to lead the new invention in apps and programmable innovations,” she said. Following her dreams, she landed in a company that works with gaming, interactive apps, website algorithm. “Those experiences led to STEM and AI robotics,” she added.
An ‘edupreneur’ mission-driven, she said she likes to live in bringing light positive impact to education, and according to her, having a husband with a brilliant mind in business, he walks her through into edupreneurship. Her husband is Mr. Mikael Schonberg, the founder and the sole owner of QIWI Technologies Group of Companies.
“My vision is to build new quality education and bring it to the table of educational institutions and organizations that can put education and businesses together,” she said. Through her expertise, she develops the latest education tools that bring to students comfortable learning management, a user-friendly portal that works with students regardless it is for distance learning, blended learning, homeschool, or in-classroom.
“It’s no secret that being a STEM Robotics teacher is a challenging job. Especially in my position, because I work with curriculum integration, from the core to contextualized subjects. I love teaching and finding how best to teach my students functional and practical skills they can use in their future. Teaching is my passion, and it is one of the 3 reasons I was put on this Earth. To become a teacher, a mother, and a wife,” Schonberg said.
In April 2017, she was informed that her tumor was malignant despite having a very healthy lifestyle. Nine months after, in April 2018, she was declared cancer-free. “Being a cancer survivor taught me to understand the circle of life. If some lives form a perfect circle, others take shape in ways unpredictable shifting gears of life. Everyone must be grateful; everyone must think how precious and privilege to be alive, to breathe, to enjoy, and to love,” she said.
Her advise to her fellow Filipinos abroad is to believe in themselves. “Focus on what you do, do not be afraid to be different and most of all, spice it up with prayers and hard work. That’s it!” she said.
Hope Mission to Mars
The UAE’s Mars Mission, named Hope probe, has reached the planet Mars’ orbit in February, and for her, as an educator with an interest in innovation and technology, the campaign was massive.
“This campaign encouraged students to learn about space and discover the wonder of earth science,” the teacher of STEM Robotics, science, and biology, said.
Through her husband’s company, QIWI Technologies Group of Companies, they supply STEM Robotics kits and curriculum to schools, introduce the release of the new educational lessons for the scientific curriculum that integrate the subjects into interactive space-related programs, electives, workshops, and training with STEM materials and kits. It has recently announced its first competition using scrap materials. This major project will provide participants an opportunity to innovate, learn, and understand the Hope mission to Mars. Meanwhile, Schonberg is leading a group to spearhead the competition to encourage and inspire teachers with their students to research and do scientific experience in various STEM fields.
This story has been featured on the 11th issue of The Global Filipino Magazine. To get a copy, you may contact Mr Orli Gayeta at +971503196856. If you have an inspiring story or know someone with one, please send an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.