TGIF—Thank God it’s the finish line!

Four years ago when I stepped onto college, I was a clueless boy wondering what new challenges stood awaiting my curiosity. Like everyone else, I was excited to attend my classes and listen attentively to discussions with an expensive binder at hand to write notes on.
My college education was a very big blessing as I got the chance to study and take up the course Mass Communication which I really wanted—for free because of the presidential scholarship offered to me. To maintain it, I had to endure sleepless nights, drink immeasurable amount of coffee to stay awake, and experience the harsh stress derived from piles of tasks (not to mention the extreme pressure caused by professors and instructors ).
But hey, I was also a normal student who had a fill of college life’s happy memories and crazy moments. I even did things I considered unethical when I was in high school like copying from seatmates during quizzes and exams, failing to submit projects and assignments on time, and ignoring other requirements. There were lazy days when my classmates and I would agree to skip classes and just while away the time somewhere.
I spent nights chilling out with friends at bars and on the beach where we would drink till we dropped (oops, my parents didn’t know that). Then we would all worry about the unfinished requirement the next day. We would, however, laugh out loud anyway as if it were nothing.
I got angry with classmates and friends during productions, cursed them in my mind, and celebrated with them when the projects were over. I experienced disappointments, filled my own cup of failures and grabbed a plate of opportunities to become better.
Through all these, I had proven that not everything I would learn resided in the classroom. That experimenting and challenging the norms would help me discover untapped potentials. And that only I could solve the problems I created.
Indeed, my college years were great. My Mass Comm life was exhilarating. And my future is the best part of this master plan.
Happy Graduation, batchmates!


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Experiencing Albay

Upon stepping down from the plane, we grabbed the opportunity to have our pictures taken with the Mayon Volcano in the background.




We weren’t able to take many pictures, though, when the guard shooed us away already. We then proceeded to the arrival area and looked for our service. A van from The Oriental Hotel Legazpi, the venue of the conference, stood waiting for us. We hopped in and off we went to the hotel.



What greeted us at the hotel was total disaster. I really couldn’t hide my dismay over the disorganized registration process. The problem was only one person collected the fee and other requirements for the conference from participating schools from participating schools from eight regions. Then, because the hotel was already full, we were billeted at another hotel, 10 minutes away from The Oriental.

I thought I wouldn’t like it, but when we arrived at Venezia Hotel, I instantly fell in love with it. The interior design was so relaxing it felt like home. Unlike The Oriental which has an executive feel that made the pressure of the conference more pronounced.
On the second day of the conference, the volcano was covered with clouds. Too bad, we weren’t able to take more pictures of it.
After all the events was the Albay tour.It started raining at 1 pm, but the tour pushed through. The problem was it wasn’t organized again. There weren’t enough service vehicles to pick up all delegates at the same time, so we had to wait for them to come back and pick up the remaining delegates.
Then, the worst happened. After almost five hours of waiting, no bus or any service vehicle came back to fetch the remaining delegates from the remaining three schools from the hotel. Including us. Hence, we didn’t experience the much awaited Albay tour and missed the Cagsawa Ruins which I was dying to see.
At 6 pm, we went straight to Embarcadero, the last stop of the tour where souvenir items were being sold.


The third and last day came, the day of the announcement of results. I was praying hard the previous days. I really wanted to win because it was the last contest of my college life. Halfway through the announcement at 12:30 pm, we were already scrambling to pick up our bags and leave to catch our 2 pm flight. They weren’t announcing the winners in opinion writing yet. As we walked out the hall, I heard the announcement of winners in the event I joined and yes, they mentioned my name. My heart sank though because I wasn’t in the top 5 and got the 9th place instead.
Of course, I was sad at first because I wanted to make it big in the competition, and I got less than what I wished for. But then, I realized that it must not be a big disappointment at all. Considering the number of participants from seven regions, finishing 9th is something to be proud of and thankful for.


And so bringing gladness in my heart, I took the plane back to Manila and savoured once again the fluffy clouds and mesmerizing scenery outside the window.

Photo credits to Gail Mejia and Jen Velasco. 🙂
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