Wednesday, March 9, 2011

New President, New Ateneo

“There is always an available opportunity for every one of us not only to improve ourselves but also to improve other people.”

After the long term as President of Fr. Antonio Samson S.J., it has been a great privileged and honor whenever I become the next President of the one of the most elite universities in the country, the Ateneo de Davao University. Known to as being elite and prestigious, it will then give the succeeding president a major challenge not only to maintain its prestige, but more to improve and develop the university.

As the President, it will always been difficult to meet the diverse expectations of the students, giving all their wants and needs to be satisfied upon their stay in the university. However, no matter how difficult it is, together with the other members of the school administration, we will create a new Ateneo, a synergic, competitive, proficient and excellent Ateneo.

In doing this, we must always think before hand to what school concerns should we give a lot of attention compared to the others. According to William A. Ward, “Four steps to achievement: Plan purposefully. Prepare prayerfully. Proceed positively. Pursue persistently.Before thinking of a new, excellent and incomparable Ateneo, it is most important that we should have plans and do concrete actions to make those plans implemented. By doing them, we are to achieve our dearest desire.

Here are some of the school concerns that we should consider:

  • · Student- Administration Consultation
  • · Student Empowerment
  • · School Policies
  • · Academic Norms
  • · Student Social Involvement and Engagement
  • · Satisfactory School Facilities

These are just few of the many concerns not only of the students but also the teachers. Knowing them all, we’ll give us hints on what appropriate plans should we effectuate. Surmising them all, we must also to consider that plans should be in line with the thrusts of Ateneo: ACADEMIC EXCELLENCE, SPIRITUAL MATURITY, and SOCIAL AWARENESS.

Here are my proposed actions to each of the concerns:

Student- Administration Consultation

Before other concerns, most important thing that we should give attention is the student-administration. The university is for the students and the members of the administration are the ones who admeasure the university resources for its development. But how can the administration be able to admeasure the right concerns of the students if there are no consultations happening between the two? How can the students and even the administration address to each other the matters that should be directly addressed to the whole Ateneo community, the students, teachers, non-teaching personnel, and administrators? Students can’t just rely themselves with the power of students’ representative from the student council to speak for them. It is then very important the student would also have the chance to directly speak-up their concerns and on the other hand, personally acknowledged by the administration. Any form of formal gathering, such as University General Assembly, or Students and Administration assemblage shall be executed enabling a tight relationship within the Ateneo community thus, getting away from forming any kind of conflict or misunderstanding that may arise.

Student Empowerment

If the student-administration will be executed, student are must then be empowered to join such. Part of this concern is a strategic-procedural planning. Since not all students, maybe of a half of the total students’ population do not actively participate in school activities, we then provide certain actions to mold our students become active and competitive enough not only in their academics but in all aspects concerning their development. For the first few years of the term, we can implement motivational programs that can benefit both students and teachers to participate, such as giving rewards and recognitions to them or either give an overview to possible good results that will happen if they participate and bad results if they do not.

School Policies

Strict implementation of rules and policies should be acted. Being a corps d’ elite university, we are expected to be not just good but best in conduct, acting right ethics and highly respected. By this, we should formulate specific and easy to be obeyed rules and regulations considering that Ateneo community is a Jesuit institution and a Philippine-based university. The culture and religion are then two of the must-be considered factors upon making policies.

Academic Norms

There should be a recognized academic norms being couched. Everyone knows that students and teachers always rely on the academic norms that our university has. But how can we be organized if the academic norms itself is not also organized? How can we be truly considered as excellent if our academic norms do not equate the standards of being an excellent university? We should high standards on academic that can truly identify who are students that should be qualified to be included in the university. With this, we are to empower and challenge the students to bring their best in achieving academic excellence thus in implied, we help them become better persons ready to face a competitive world whenever they graduate in Ateneo.

Student Social Involvement and Engagement

Academic Excellence is not enough to completely mold an Atenean. Thus, being socially aware of what is happening around also be inculcated in their minds and hearts. Concerns with the environment, national politics, economy, even in cultural issues, the school must provide certain activities to keep the students socially involved and actively engaged in these matters. Thus, being Atenean, we are expected to be well-rounded and not just academically excellent.

satisfactory school facilities

Important thing to consider also is the facilities of an institution. We all know how the facilities could affect the learning and development of each student. One recurring issue now is the Wireless Internet connection of the school. Students’ complaint is; we pay what we should pay, but why don’t we receive what we should receive? We must then provide necessary facilities that we know are and conducive and helpful for the students on their learning. We must maximize the resources that we have. We should not limit the opportunities to learn that students will have whenever school facilities will be improved. It will then create a big impact not only among the students and teachers but also with the school itself.

Other programs that we can also implement are:

  • · Teaching and Non-teaching personnel beneficial programs
  • · Social entrepreneurship of the school

Above all, as the president of the university, it is then my responsibility to mold each student to bring out the best in them, and to produce graduates that are competitive enough to bring the Ateneo spirit not only in the Philippines but also in the rest of the world. Ateneo spirit, being academically excellent, spiritually mature and socially aware.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

A Year from NOW..

For 5,840 days of existence in this world, I am now 365 days towards something that I am looking forward to. For 5,840 days of experiences, I am only a year away from something I also afraid to happen. For 5,840 days of living, I have only 1 year to prepare myself to face what the world awaits me to be. It seems to be so amazing to imagine how I am able to exist, stay and live in this lovely thing that God had created for already 16 years. For a child whose date of birth and death is the same, how he wishes to live even just for a day. 16 years is more than enough. I may not have everything that I wanted, at least I don't have nothing. For 16years, contentment is one of the best lessons that I learned. Even if I don't have everything, at least I have something. And that something has always been everything to me, my Father, my family, my friends and those who are always there for me.

I just can't still imagine myself on how do I able to surpass all the trials that I have been through. All the blacks, grays and dark that I saw was just a blink and after, i then saw the rainbow and the light with smile and laughter. That in every time I slip, I flip, I fall, I cry, and I almost die, I can still get up, stand up, move on and go on towards my desires. Even at my greatest downfalls, I still strive not to forget about my dreams, my dreams for my family, for my friends and the least for myself. Because I know, without those people, I will not reach this time of life. I may falter, but they keep on reminding me that whatever I do, still the love they have for me will never ever change. I may have been hurt and torn down, yet they hold me to stand up and wipe those tears away. I may have hurt others, but they let me learn from them, and let me know that mistakes are my greatest teachers in life.

From 1 to 16, I learn to be strong, control my emotions, and fight for what I know is right and good. I had learned to accept defeat and strive to succeed. I learned to bend when I have to, and to stand out when I should. I have known also finally, how to let go and move on. It is at 16 that I have challenged to become someone that I wish I will be. And I'm glad, I had my first step towards achieving it. I'm so happy that at 16, I met so many people, extraordinary people who take part of my life and now, who are very special to my heart. At 16, it's good to know how I slowly establish the bond within my family. Many challenges, yet this make my existence become my living. 16 years has come to an end, and I'm looking forward to more things that I will get through and where I can always learn to that awaits me as I prepare myself before that moment, a year from now. :)

Saturday, January 22, 2011

I found love in YOU.

People find love in different in many ways, through things, through other people, and through what they do. I can say that I also find love in those things, but I found the greatest love.

For more than a year, I have been already living away from home and I can only count the days where I can wake up seeing the faces of my family and go to sleep at night saying “Good night” to them.

For more than a year, I have been already getting through my life with my friends who stand as my second family here, in the place which I call as my “2nd home”. I eat with them, find strength from them, and laugh and have fun with them.

For more than a year, I have been already been so in loved with all the things that I do independently. I decide by my own, I buy things by my own, I am responsible for my ownself. Being independent is what I really loved to do when I know I can.

But for more than a year, I sometimes think that I am slowly losing love. Love that I know, every person on earth wants, every person on earth searches for, and every person needs in order to survive.

But before I totally become so hopeless of finding love again from losing it, a great MAN made me feel so in loved with him in every minute of my life. He never leave me behind even when troubles come along. He always made me cry, cry of wanting to feel his touch, cry of gratitude for him for coming into my life. Since I was a little child, I just knew that there is only one man in my life, and that is my father.

But as I get older and older each day, a very blessed day came and I met the man of my dreams, the man who made me feel the greatest love that I wanted to have, that I needed the most and that I really searched for.

I just found love and...

I found it in YOU...


Saturday, January 15, 2011

Leaders are not born with the greatest power.

Many leaders of today are said to be born. Many leaders of today are said to be the most powerful. Many leaders of today are said to take all the jurisdiction. But are these all what many leaders should said to be?

Since I was still in grade school, I am already into different activities that uncovers the leadership skill that I have. Stepping into High School, I have undergone into various exposures, significant seminars and trainings that strengthen and enriched my capabilities. And now while having my stand here in college, all that I went through when still a little child until now was what all that I’ve got to work, play, live and exist as a leader, not just to other people but into dominion of my ownself.

Recently, I have been affiliated to particular clubs having significant in Ateneo, that not only to test my learning and experiences but also to evaluate myself. This challenges me a lot since I know that elementary and high school environment is very different with college.

Thus because of this transition and challenge that I got, I’ve came to think that having leadership is different from having power. And true and good leaders are not born with the greatest power.

Leadership is a process wherein you get into control of your members’ behaviors directing them to achieve the goal of the group while Power is a then the need of controlling other people without even taking into consideration their needs especially in achieving goals.

A good leader is taking into mind the need of others than his own need. A good leader expresses his ideas based on the members and not to his own interest and benefit.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Little things create BIG things.

In my 17 years of existence, I am happy to know that I have been through a lot of incomparable experiences. Experiences not just those that can be forgotten if time passes by, but experiences that remained in my memory, not only to my own, but also to other people.

Yes! To other people. We live in this world doing things wherein at all circumstances, other people are affected.

I, with my passion and service, take a part of my time to God. For many people, this sounds so “corny”. But for me, this becomes the line that I always wanted to hear and say. But whatever they will say, these never stops me to do what I loved. To do what I loved. Prayer and service to God have already became a part of my life. Without them, living would just become existing.

Because of this, I won't miss any chance to thanking God for allowing me to see the sunrise in each passing day. I try not to fail in my commitment in serving God during masses. And if I am in my hometown, I will try my best to sing praises for Him until the end of my voice.

These little things create big things to myself. This makes me feel secured and accompanied by Someone that I may never see but his being absent physically can't equal his presence within me. He never let me feel that I am alone living in this big city.

But these little things create bigger things to others. Last Wednesday, I received letters from my friends. I never think of reading such letters. It was not in my mind that I made God smile with my simple little things. It also made me feel so delighted knowing that those little things have touched other people's heart to do the same. I never thought that with my living, I can also inspire others to do things that can make God smile even more.

We may not be aware that our little things had already touched other people's lives, that in our little things we make other people happy, we make our Father smile. Now, we are called to do even just little things, just the little ones, because little things create big things to others.

Saturday, December 4, 2010


Noise! Please leave me! But how can the noise leave me if I myself is the noise? I will leave myself? That's impossible!

The start of my week week was disastrous. Why?

I am an AUDITORY learner. I prefer to learn by hearing. And I tend to move my lips and read out loud. I much prefer a spoken explanation to myself for me to clarify if I really understand what i am reading. And here's why it's a disaster. Currently, I am staying in a room where sound waves can easily pass through going to the other side of the room. In other words, the walls are not that thick. Because of this, people from the outside can hear and been distracted of my loud voice which I call as "NOISE".

This is my problem. Since I was in elementary, I am used of reading books aloud especially at dawn.Good thing that i am staying in our OWN house and the place is very convenient for me to study. But in my case now, I am not in my own house. I am then, in the midst of considering my own comfort and others' comfort. I can't read out loud because others are already sleeping and I might disturb them. I was thinking of many solutions to my problem.

1. I just
continue what I used to do even others are uncomfortable with it.

- But that makes me too insensitive. But others say, it's not. Because I have the right to do what I want. In fact, I don't violate any laws of the land, any human rights, and either any law of God.

2. I read in school, record everything in a n electronic device and I'll hear it through earphones when I'm already at home.

-This can be a good idea but, this somehow won't help me develop more of my skills. With my habits, I know this couldn't help me a lot.

3. Cover my room with lots of hard stuffs that sound waves can't pass through like egg trays, 'carton', styrofoam and the like.

-It's very costly and needs a lot of effort yet, I know it is very effective. Plus, this make me feel like I'm a recording artist in my own recording studio. :)))

4. Lastly, to practice myself and change from being an auditory learner to a VISUAL learner

-I will try to learn by seeing and writing. That instead of reading out loud, I'll try to read by my eyes only. Instead of speaking all the explanations out loud, I'll just write it down.

I'll take this no.4 solution. It is then one way to challenge myself. This can be very difficult at first, but I know I'll just get you used to it as time passes by. I must also let myself to be flexible in every situation.

BUT! If this will greatly affect my performance in class, then I'll go for the no.3 solution as my LAST resort. (though now, I am already starting to collect egg trays.) :)))

Friday, November 26, 2010

Amazing to the power of 12

Third Sunday of November, 2010. A friend of mine invited me to go to a BIG place that i never visited even once. At no expense, I go with my friend. I can't imagine how would that place looks like. Though it never excites me that much.

Just as we arrived, I can't resist myself to say "Amazing!", as I figured out that all their public vehicles should be painted Green. But I just neglect that thing and never expect for more. As we went to other special places within that big place, I saw a CASTLE-like building. It was so BIG! I just can't help myself from being so astonished. I kept on staring it from the ground to its peak. I kept on roaming around that "castle" and I saw this GIANT Holy Rosary. It was the big place's New Cathedral. Then for the second time, I yell "Amazing!". As we get inside the Cathedral, the ceiling, the vastness of the area, the pictures on the wall, the stained glasses, everything captured my attention. That made me say "Amazing!" for the third time. Our next stop was the big place's Freedom Park. for the fourth time, "Amazing!". I saw these children showering at the same time having fun in the fountain.

As we walk along, the big place's pride, I saw it for the first time. It was the GIANT Christmas Tree. No doubt, it was really a giant. For the fifth time, "Amazing!". The Rotary Park was where we go next. The Sandy Volleyball court made me say "Amazing!" for the sixth time. I look around and I noticed these colored circular chairs. "Amazing!" for the seventh time. I can't believe that the big place's authorities had initiated to construct those ones. For the next place where we will be going, I expect too much from that. As we were there already, "Amazing! Amazing! Amazing!". Everything was more than too much of my expectations. The statues of saints and angels, the chandeliers, the little chapels and some wood carvings, they made me all mesmerized and say "Amazing!" for the eighth time. I just can't believe that I have been kind of Cathedral.

Taking a tour around the Cathedral, I saw those devotees doing dances in front of the statues. It was their belief. It has to do with their faith. Their faithfulness, made me say "Amazing!" for the ninth time. As we went back to the Freedom Park waiting for something, I saw that vendor playing this flying-lighting toy. He threw it in the air for the tenth time, "Amazing!". I was so "child-like" to be amazed that much. One more thing, I ate "kwek-kwek". But extraiordinarily, it was this "kwek-kwek" with 21 days old "balut" added with some seaweeds, cucumber and pineapple. for the eleventh time, "Amazing!".

And what I waited for so long, it was already there. The Giant Christmas Tree was very sparkling, very glaring, very pleasing to my eyes. For the twelfth time, I yelled loudly, "Amazing!". The red, green, blue and gold Christmas lights made my Third Sunday of November, 2010 in TAGUM CITY very "Amazing!"

I just can't wait for some other times where I can say more than twelve times the word "Amazing!" as I travel farther. :)