I shifted to the Faculty of Art and Letters from the Faculty of Pharmacy because it was my dream to be a journalist. However, my decision to have another home in UST came with a price, considering that I should have graduated by the time I was writing this final piece.

But earlier in my days as an aspiring pharmacist, I found that people were too serious, that everything in this college was a competition. Never have I seen groups of people forming around with gifted individuals who are consistent dean’s listers. These people who deem it necessary to hang on to such talent so that they may have someone to boost their academic standing.

Adding to that, classroom politics grew worse every semester. People twisted stories to destroy the reputation of their fellow classmates just for the sake of having more friends and supporters.

I grew weary of this daily struggle to keep my sanity in check. In time, all I could see was the brutal hue of black and white, signifying the dullness and monotony of my life in Pharmacy. I felt my creativity and writing skills were being stunted with huge loads of scientific terms needed to be memorized.

One time during class, I was on my way to the bathroom to escape the stifling atmosphere conjured by a lecture of supposedly infinitesimal scientific proportions, when I chanced upon a small flyer of the Varsitarian inviting students to apply for the student publication.

There lay before me the salvation of my college life, my chance to pour my mind over an institution willing to take on students who could write. Before I knew it, on April 1, 2008, I officially became a Varsitarian staffer.

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A master in perpetual bloom

And all this time, I thought the only requirement was to write stories and pass them on time, which at first was a feat I failed as a Witness writer.

It was a slow start until I became a Literary writer. There flourished the words in me that I could only write in my dreams, stories that I wished to be immortalized by own words and experience. It was also my greatest achievement that I was not subject to criticisms by the “Renaissance” man, Sir Joselito Zulueta, aside from the mysterious “apple tree.”

By the time I finished my second year with the esteemed student publication, I was sapped of my energy to maintain my composure as a writer and staffer. But then I realized that I was enjoying every day working in the Varsitarian. It gave me a sense of purpose and taught me to be responsible.

I shed my former self. I left behind my laziness and built my self-esteem. I finally became my natural self and I found my closest friends in the publication.

And here I am, saying these things not for the sake of telling people that life in the Varsitarian is quite simple. The words that I deliver to you, my fellow Thomasians, is but a chunk of my experiences working in this organization.

I do not regret that I shifted to Journalism entering my third and final year in the Varsitarian. If I may, I could already admit that Varsitarian is a classroom full of workhorses who strive to do their best without pulling their constituents back to the stable.

The grit and grind attitude that I, along with my fellow editors, have adopted opened my eyes to what we should be doing as individuals, which is to do our best while instilling in ourselves the value of competence, compassion, and commitment.

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Fueling the Thomasian literary fire

At the very end of a dark tunnel, there is light that beckons a new beginning. My mission to give light to the darkest crevices of that tunnel would not have been meaningful and enjoyable without my companions of the pen.

To the erudite Sir Joselito Zulueta and the fatherly Sir Felipe Salvosa II, the sources of our staunch religiosity and honesty in reporting, thank you for the many tasks you have beset upon me for the past three years. I shall never forget the snippets of knowledge you have shared with this writer.

To my superiors, Cliff and AJ, I give you thanks for bearing with me and my erratic behavior as Witness editor. I am deeply sorry for not being of good help when you needed it the most. My friendship with you will be sorely missed.

To Cha, Jilly, Lester, Ailex, Dana, Jem, Carla, Paul and Ramon, my fellow editors, may you realize that your presence have already shaped my attitudes and helped me mature in the process. Thank you for bearing with my negativity.

To my brother and sister under the Holy Cross, Brylle and Jenn, you have done well in the only year that we have worked together. Thank you for bearing with me, especially during those crucial instances like our reportage on the Reproductive Health (RH) bill and many situations that made us “public enemies” among RH bill supporters (or maybe it was just me).

To Paeng, Melai, Cam, Cham, Ernest, Alya, Jilson, Fritz, Meg, Frau, and Isai, thank you for the small talks that made big impacts on my life.

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'V' staffer first in poetry contest

To Aki, the one girl I considered adopting as my little sister, it is with joy that I thank you for being my partner in problem-sharing, and how we could solve each other’s problem. The world is a big place. Tread carefully, little one.

Of whom I gave my all—my personal time, laughter, tears and my heart—there is no other that I would give my greatest gratitude but to my beloved Aica, who has also given me time to prove myself. Do not let the world bully you to hide within your silent heart for if you hold my hand, you can never falter in finding what matters most to you.

Here I stand on a fork road, ready to begin another life outside Room 105 of the Tan Yan Kee Building.

There will be great things ahead of me, but I will not forget that my mortality will force me to look back and see the things that I have done. And I will never forget what transpired in that room for three years.

Until I enter my grave in old age, I will never forget that I was a ‘V’ staffer, and always will be.

1 COMMENT

  1. walang pulitika sa pharma para lamang makaungos ka…ka-batch kita eh (2011,classmate pa nga kita sa NSTP nung 2nd yr eh)..oo,,iba talaga ang mundo sa pharma..seryoso..alam mo kung bakit? dahil pag-graduate mo..hindi lang basta-basta ang subject na hahawakan mo..BUHAY NG TAO..crucial di ba?kaya ganoon ang training sa pharma,dahil buhay ang pinag-uusapan sa actual na practice..magkamali ka ng formulation or dispensing ng gamot,buhay agad ang nakasalalay…
    one more thing, hindi kailangang magsiraan ng mga magkaka-klase sa pharma para magkaroon ng kaibigan or supporters and hindi mga abot-langit ang mga DL dun…i have many friends na dean’s lister at mga latin honor holders,pero down to earth silang lahat..walang hangin,maybe you’re just stuck sa iisang mundo sa faculty of pharmacy..ayaw mo lang i-discover ang masayang mundo sa pharma, yung nagtutulungan ang bawat grupo sa experiements,thesis,formulations,titrations etc….
    last one, congratulations sa iyo kasi matapang mong hinarap ang gusto mo sa buhay…nasunod mo ang gusto mong mangyari sa buhay mo, to be a journalist.sana pag naka-graduate ka na ng journalism,maging responsableng journalist ka, show to us the highest and most credible form of journalism 🙂

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