It’s my turn.

I recently wrote my musings about my students graduating here. After a week, I had the chance to experience the same. Well, it was a symbolic rite of passage. I actually finished my Masters of Arts degree in Education during the first term of 2009 (in November, to be specific) and joining the College Recognition program last April 23 was just sort of a formality.

While waiting for my turn (together with some classmates who graduated as well) to “march” into the Cine Adarna Theater, I was hit by a wave of nostalgia and a bit of sadness, I remembered my father who passed away two years ago. It would have been nice if he were around to witness such an event.

For a brief background, I enrolled in first semester 2000 in the graduate program of Guidance and Counseling. With an undergraduate course in Political Science, I was not sure if I entered the right program. Political Science is waay too far and unconnected with Counseling. But I did know and I was certain that it was the intense and deep longing to help people understand themselves and assist them work through their concerns and problems that prompted me to get into the program.

I made the right decision. I was in the right track. The courses did not only enrich me intellectually and academically but it also helped me understand my self and others. I discovered my self a whole lot more and it is my hope (and still is) that such awareness of self will lead me to be the person that I hope to be. I also had the opportunity to be mentored and taught by professors who are experts in the field. Furthermore, it also fueled my love for learning and reading so much that now, I’m seriously considering studying again – another MA degree or maybe a PHD?

It took me 9 years to finish the program, which usually takes about 5-6 years on the average. Sure, I had a lot of detours (2 years of sickness and 2 years of getting back on my feet/getting a job after the sickness) and bumps or should I say ruts( ?) (my father’s passing, writer’s block and lack of motivation while writing my thesis, and many others) but I did manage to make it to the finish line! It was one meaningful journey filled with lessons learned and friendships established along the way.

Enough of the background which I intended to be brief but turned out to be a lengthy one. But I am glad that I did attend the College Recognition program because I learned that my graduate thesis was nominated in the Best Thesis category. Surprise! Too bad I didn’t get the award but getting my thesis nominated for the second time* was a great honor for me.

It is indeed my turn. My time. I might as well savor it.

* The other nomination is for Best in Thesis in Women’s Studies and Gender at the 4th Lourdes Lontok-Cruz Awards, UP Center for Women’s Studies.

Ramblings of an educator

April 17, 2010 was a memorable day for the batch of 2010. After several years of studying, sweating it out, sleepless nights, rushing and running to meet deadlines, they finally made it!

Twenty-seven graduates proudly marched and were conferred their respective degrees. I’m sure it was a joyous day for the graduates, their parents and their teachers. But in my heart, I was the happiest and proudest. I have seen these students mature and hurdle obstacles they encountered as they progressed through college.

As a teacher, I have taught the majority of them. I remember being disappointed and frustrated when they performed less than they should have – when they failed to submit requirements or they failed their exams. I rejoiced when they performed in class excellently and marveled when they exceeded my expectations.

Batch 2010

As a counselor, I have walked with some of them during their trials and challenges. I was only there to listen and encourage but they were still responsible in making their own decisions.

As an administrator, I became close to them when we were on the final months – pestering and reminding them to complete their requirements and to make sure that they pass their subjects. I admit it was draining, downright frustrating and oftentimes infuriating but it was all worth it. It was definitely worth it – seeing them receive their diplomas and seeing the radiant faces not only of the graduates but their parents as well.

Ah, the joys and pains of being an educator. I am once again reminded why I chose this path in the first place. Congratulations Batch 2010, wishing you all the best!

Miscellaneous Sunday

It was one hell of a week! Pardon my language but it certainly was one busy and stressful week for me. Many things happened in such short a time that I have not had the time to blog about them. BUT I will find the time to post an entry about the following:

1. My students’ graduation – I have been quite busy for many months preparing for this event. It’s such a wonderful time to see students, after years of studying, march and share the stage with their parents.

2.  Thoughts about a book I’ve finished reading – I finished “The Kite Runner” a week ago but I have not had the time to write about it.

3. Second session in my Korean language class – It was quite an interesting session. More thoughts to come!

4. Thoughts on “Good Morning, Mr. President” (Korean film).

I will be back either today or tomorrow for a post about one of the above-mentioned subjects. In the meantime, I will take a much needed rest. After all, it is Sunday!

Easter Monday realities

image from clipartof.com

Ok, back to reality. The long weekend is over. Back to work.

I just came from working over time. Yes, it’s that time of the year again. Graduation! The dreaded day is exactly 12 days from now. And with the days left, we are preparing all that is needed for the commencement exercises.

But before that, I just spent the whole day talking and conferring to students to eventually know if they are indeed graduating or not.  Professors just submitted their grades today and I’m expecting more grades to be in tomorrow. I’m also kind of emotionally drained because I also counsel those who did not make it. It saddens me too.

I will be busy until the 17th. I hope that I will have time to blog because blogging does help me in de-stressing. I was thinking of writing about the movies I watched during the break. If my schedule permits then, I will certainly write and post it.