Last month, nag-usap-usap kami ng aking staff saan kami mag-inaugurate o mag-launch ng aming presidential at vice-presidential. Some suggested the North, some the South because I come from the Visayas, some wanted the rally or whatever event might happen inside Metro Manila, some outside Metro Manila. Pero bandang huli, dahil marami na masyado ang nagsasalita, ka’ko, dalhin niyo ako sa campus where I have always been most comfortable with an audience, but only a campus consisting of ordinary students. I want a campus with a high IQ.
(Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago at Mariano Marcos State University, Batac City, Feb. 9, 2016)
And, of course, the obligatory pick-up lines here:
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He regularly plays DoTA, watches cartoons on television, spends long hours with his barkada, and nurtures a vibrant love life.
But Dane Mikhael S. Calica is no ordinary boy. He will lead the 1,926-strong Mariano Marcos State University Class of 2013 in the Commencement Exercises to be held, April 3, at the university’s Sunken Garden. Making history, he is only the second MMSU Summa Cum Laude since the university’s birth in 1978. The late Gemma Ulep, who finished accountancy in 1999, was first.
Calica obtained a General Weighted Average of 1.1994. His transcript of records, peppered mostly with 1.0s and 1.25’s, shows that his lowest grade was a 2.0 in Invetebrate Zoology from Prof. Wilnorie Rasay. He has 1.75 in three subjects: Entomology and Comparative Anatomy, also both under Mr. Rasay, and English 2 under Dr. Aurora Reyes.
In 2009, Calica graduated as first honorable mention at the Ilocos Norte National High School-Special Science Class. When this Laoag City native took the MMSU College Freshmen Admission Test, his score of 156 was highest among around 5,000 hopefuls from various provinces in Northern Luzon.
In his speech during the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) Graduation Ball, March 21, Calica shared that an unsolicited advice given him early on helped define his college life. He was referring to this writer who did a story on the CFAT topnotcher. I was sure that Dane is intelligent but, because he shunned extra curricular activities in high school, the reason why he graduated only third in rank despite having the highest grade average, I had doubts as to whether he would fully enjoy what a university education has to offer. After the interview, I told Dane that there is so much to learn outside the four-cornered classroom and that he should aspire for a well-balanced college life. I also told him that our people expects him to do great things and so he should use his gifts well. He did not say anything. The incoming nursing freshman just let out a shy smile.
Dane Mikhael S. Calica
It’s official. The 1,926-strong Mariano Marcos State University Class of 2013 will be led by a Summa Cum Laude graduate.
With a General Weighted Average (GWA) of 1.1994, Dane Mikhael S. Calica of the College of Arts and Sciences’ BS Biology program, is only the university’s second recipient of the highest Latin honors, and the first in fourteen years.
A native of Laoag City, Calica is the eldest of three children of Gary, a seafarer, and Marilec, a full-time mom. He finished high school at the Ilocos Norte National High School – Special Science Class in 2009. Despite having the highest average in his batch, he graduated only as first honorable mention due to low points from extra co-curricular activities.
Topping the 2009 MMSU College Freshmen Admission Test taken by around 5,000 examinees from various provinces in Northern Luzon, he initially enrolled in BS Nursing but shifted to BS Biology after a semester. Although extra co-curricular involvement does not count in earning Latin honors, he served as president of the Biology Circle for two years, and as president of the CAS Student Council in his senior year.
Joining Calica in the elite honors roster are four magna cum laudes and 113 cum laudes.
I am currently writing a full feature on Dane who is not really your typical nerd. In the meantime, Here are some more “Summa” facts: Continue reading
Communication and Media Head Jun Gudoy volunteered as my students’ tour guide
Provincial Assessor Erme Labayog, who happens to be my cousin, shares the nature of their job and their office’s breakthroughs
All majoring in Accountancy, my students had dreamy eyes when they set foot at, where else, the Accounting Office. Folks there inspired the kids. Present meets future.
Still at the Accounting Office
See, they even gave out souvenirs and candies… How sweet!
At the Session Hall with Vice Gov. Angelo Barba who had a permanently plastered smile on his face.
Having a feel of the Governor’s seat.
Wow, moments with Manang Imee..
Open Capitol: A blockbuster hit!
I brought my kids to the Open Capitol activity held Feb. 2 in celebration of the 194th Founding Anniversary of the Province of Ilocos Norte. Eighty Accountancy Students enrolled in Sociology 1 (Society and Culture, which I teach) formed part of the estimated 7,000 visitors who trooped to the Capitol that day. The tour to the province’s seat of power was timely as we were just about to begin our classroom discussions on government as a social institution.
Here, dear karikna, are some of the observations and insights of my students. Continue reading
This young man makes me proud to be from Ilocos Norte.
Jerick Christian P. Dagdagan, a cum laude graduate of the BS in Fisheries program at the Mariano Marcos State University, landed at the top spot of the Fisheries Technologist Licensure Examination held last month.
It was not easy for Dagdagan. Unable to find a review center (MMSU and CLSU had none due to lack of registrants), he found himself doing self review. He said he just consulted his teachers at the MMSU College of Aquatic Sciences and Applied Technology when there were items he could not understand.
The difficulty is coupled by the fact that he did not immediately review after graduation. He finished his studies in 2010 but, due to financial constraints, opted to work immediately as a fisheries development advocate at the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Regional Office in San Fernando, April to August. He would later move to Davao to be assistant manager for technical operations at the Jorona Aquatic Resources and Training Corporation until April this year when he decided to prepare for the board examination.
Eldest of four children of Vicente, a security guard, and Mary Grace, a nurse at the Governor Roque B. Ablan Memorial Hospital, Dagdagan was the typical carefree teenager. In an interview, Dagdagan confessed to your karikna that taking up fisheries was only his last recourse. He would have taken up nursing or chemical engineering but, due to late enrolment, lost a slot in those programs. The reason: he was “nabarkada” and lost track of time. But at CASAT, Jeric did a turnaround. He is described by his teachers as brilliant and determined. He was active in school organizations and was sent to competitions, both academic and cultural. He was also the college’s bet in table tennis.
It is actually a double treat for the family living in Brgy. San Simeon in the coastal town of Currimao as Jerick’s brother Jake Valentin, who graduated last April, also passed the board exam.
The morale of this story: If you want to succeed, pagbabarkada is the key to success. Joke!
Jerick’s story is actually a lesson on the often unappreciated relationship between will and destiny.
On June 1, you took your new job as provincial tourism officer of Ilocos Norte. You left a teaching career in the university to assume a responsibility where you feel you can be of better service to society.
I talked to you against it, first because you are a real gem in the academe, and second because I will miss working with you, but you seem resolute and eager, and so I fully support you and wish you well, as any real friend should.
You have always had my respect, and you know that. You know, too, that I believe you are one of the most creative minds in the province, er, in the country. You loved your job in the university, and your job loved you back. As a result, students under your tutelage won regional and national awards. With your theatrics, showmanship and exceptional talent, you have endeared yourself to your colleagues.
As you endeared yourself to me. Thank you for doing the cover and layout of “The He(a)rd Mentality”, a perfect testament to your Dionysian ecstasies. “Don’t judge a book by its cover” is an old maxim our book defies, for the cover you skillfully crafted gave perfect justice to my work’s content. You made me cry with your difficulty in beating deadlines, but that is not exactly unusual with real artists whose worlds defy both time and space. I am glad the end did justify the tearful means.
You are a real gem, Aian, but not all good people, of course, must hide inside academic walls and content themselves with passionate theorizing and making students believe in an idealized world. Leave that dreamy job to fools like me. Continue reading
DEFYING STEREOTYPES on student athletes, this guy proves that there is as much gray matter between his ears as the muscles in his arms.
Arnel Jordan B. Doming has gathered 15 gold medals from various regional and national sports competitions he participated while in college. Last March 26 he received yet another. “It is the most precious one,” he says.
Domingo graduated cum laude with the degree bachelor in secondary education, major in mathematics.
Four years ago, Domingo’s future was unsure. Although he graduated as valedictorian both at the Bagbago-Puttao Elementary School in his hometown Solsona and at the Ablan Memorial Academy in the same town, he could not go to college because of financial limitations. Domingo’s father Erneso died when he was in fourth grade. His mother Lorna is a housekeeper. Continue reading