Hemostasis – the arrest of bleeding

IF THERE is one thing I have learned from being a Varsitarian staffer, it is to never doubt God’s will. Disappointment may at first knock on my door, but I have learned that it should never deter me from what I want to achieve in life.

Four years ago, I was a college freshman, eager to prove herself to her new environment. My mother, being a UST Journalism graduate, encouraged my interest in campus journalism by suggesting that I try out for the Varsitarian. Because the publication does not accept freshmen, I decided to try out for our faculty’s publication, instead. Unfortunately, I didn’t pass the qualifying exams.

That failure almost ended my career in college campus journalism even before it started because admittedly, it was a huge blow to my self-confidence. I thought, if I didn’t get accepted in a faculty publication, what chance do I have against the Journalism students who will try out for the University’s official student publication? Thinking that I wouldn’t lose anything and that I should simply let the V serve as a gauge of whether I should continue writing or not, I took the qualifying examinations in January 2007. To my utter disbelief, I passed not only the qualifying examinations but the specialized exams and the interview that followed. Before I knew it, I was a bonafide V staffer.

Looking back, I guess it really was God’s will that led me to the Varsitarian. I know that there are many other good Thomasian writers out there and the odds of me getting admitted to the publication if they only decided to take the exams when I did. For me, the years that followed served as testament to that will.

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It was in the V where I met the craziest, funniest, and most intelligent individuals who I would later on refer to as my friends. It was in the V, through these people, that I learned how to live life fully. Because of the staffers, I learned to enjoy the company of people my age through retreats, outings, pressworks, and extra-editorial activities. Together with them, we struggled to balance the V along with our studies and personal lives. It was also with them that I struggled to save myself from obsessing over academics when it was fast starting to take its toll on me.

For me, being a Varsitarian staffer is not only a vocation—it is a way of life. When I don’t have classes, I go to the V office to revise articles, edit articles, update on extra-editorial activities, do legwork, perform V-related errands, or (if time permits) study. Sometimes, when I am buried under workloads of V-related tasks, I think that the time I spend with my family or in the classroom are the only moments when I get to stop being a V staffer. And so, after what seemed like forever, it is with much anticipation and sadness that I leave this way of life behind to pursue a higher degree of learning in the University’s medical school.

As I finally close this chapter of my life, I would like to thank the following who have been with me in all my years as a V staffer:

My parents, Police Senior Superintendent Allen Bantolo and Mrs. Pia Marie Cecilia Bantolo, and my siblings, Alene Marie and Aleana Cecilia, for their unwavering support, understanding, and encouragement. Not once did they ever tell me to quit from the V, in spite of the countless demands of the publication to its staffers.

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Sir Lito and Sir Ipe, for the guidance and for the lessons learned.

My classmates from 3H Medical Technology who have been understanding and accepting of my unusual V staffer-cum-med tech student lifestyle.Cams, Chris Mark, and Mel, who served as “chimisan” buddies and true friends who would keep my hand outs in class whenever I was not around to claim them because I was on a coverage.

All of the V staffers whom I have worked with through the years, it has been a pleasure shedding blood, sweat, and tears with you as we slave over one extra-editorial activity after another. Emil and Danielle, my remaining V batchmates, for being steadfast and unwavering. Thank you for the companionship for the last three years.

Jet, the V friend I’ll always look up to. Levine, who will always be my kuya.Eli, who will always be my best friend and chismisan buddy.FJ, my co-writer, editor, future colleague, and ultimately, my sibling.

My former editors, Kuya Laurie and Ate Celina, for everything that I have learned and will pass on to other Science and Technology writers.My former co-writer, Ian, for the camaraderie. My writers, Yen and Ramon: as cliché as it may sound, I would still say that I could not have asked for better writers than the two of you. Thank you for your support and cooperation. Ramon, Yen and I have faith in you. Keep the Science and Technology tradition burning.

To those I have failed to mention, I thank you for being a part of my College life and V life.

Once a V staffer, always a V staffer!

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