Wednesday, April 20, 2016

THINGS TO CONSIDER IN 2016 ELECTIONS

If we really desire to push this country forward several things must be considered in this upcoming elections.

1. Continuity and protection of gains of previous administrations. The next president should recognize the achievements of his/her predecessors, not curse them. He/She must be willing to build up, not tear down. We cannot reboot the country over and over again. We have become a "changeless land" in the process.

2. Politics of action must be evident and consistent. People are already fed up with cosmetic politics (papogi) and mere demagoguery. They have been clamoring for significant and tangible change, especially in the workings of the bureaucracy and public service delivery. Political will among the country's top leaders is really hard to come by. They should have the mettle to push for genuine "inclusive development" which can be appreciated by the common "tao." Economic statistics should fill their stomachs.

3. Poverty reduction, if not eradication, must be really prioritized. Again, PRIORITIZED. It has been a major cause of our endemic, attendant issues (i.e. crime and corruption). The next leaders should really be "intentional" in addressing this social evil, not with palliative solutions, but with long-term, empowering approaches. People, must also feel that their leaders really identify with their social, cultural, and economic hurts and pains.

4. Changes in the way we do politics are long overdue. We have yet to change our narratives and discourses of reformism, populism and clientelist politics. This vicious cycle emanates from institutional weaknesses (i.e. legislation, electoral rules, arty politics) which privilege the elites and dismiss the ability of the "have-nots" to contribute in nation-building.

5. Radical transformation in the collective psyche and pathos of the people. We have become a nation of "reklamador". Our political engagement is undoubtedly reactionary. We need to transition from politics of complaint to politics of moral revival. It has always been a "heart issue." A strong leader may inspire the people but it is still the individuals who need to change for the better, first and foremost.

‪#‎genuinechange‬ ‪#‎politics101‬

Sunday, April 03, 2016

AFTER HIGH SCHOOL LIFE, WHAT'S NEXT?

Mahirap makalimutan ang high school life. Crazy days. Sandamukal na bloopers ng teenage years. May schedule ang silay sa crush. Ubusan nang lakas na practice for school presentations. First exposure sa kung paano mag-cram sa isang project. Emotional testing kung bumabagsak sa quizzes and exams. At ang pinakahighlight: walang katapusang bonding with friends. 

Noong panahon ko wala pang K to 12 program. Ang aming 4th year high school ang Grade 10 ninyo ngayon, na sakop ng inyong Junior high school. Classified na high school student pa rin kayo ngayon noong panahon nasa 1st and 2nd year college na kami. Maaga kaming binulaga ng college life.

Sa kasalukuyang sistema, sa Senior High School, may tatlong education tracks kang pagpipilian: Academic with three sub-tracks (Business, Accountancy, Management (BAM); Humanities, Education, Social Sciences (HESS); and Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM)); Technical-Vocational-Livelihood; and Sports and Arts.

Palagay ko, by the time na natapos mo na ang Junior High School level, may ideya ka na kung ano ang tatahakin mong karera. Bibigyan kayo ng mga diagnostic tests para malaman ninyo kung saan kayo magaling o mas bagay ang inyong skill-set. Crucial sa gagawin ninyo after high school ang identification ng inyong “intelligence”. Mas hayahay o madali ang pag-aaral kapag alam mong naroon ang competency mo at nagi-enjoy ka sa iyong ginagawa.

Hindi ka puwedeng high school student forever. Pagtanggap mo ng iyong high school diploma, ano naman ang buhay na naghihintay sa iyo?

Of course, relax mode muna. Chillax. Summer is bonding time with barkada. Leading to the opening of academic year, unti-unting i-switch ang utak at kaluluwa to academic o work mode.

Sa mga financially-challenged, seryosohin ang inyong Senior High School years upang maihanda ang inyong sarili sa pagtatrabaho. Pagkatapos mo ng Grade 12, 18 years old ka na. Ito na ang edad na pinapayagan ka na ng batas upang maging bahagi ng workforce. May mga certification tests kayong dapat ipasa na ina-administer ng Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) kung nais ninyong madaling matanggap sa mga kumpanya.

May fulfillment kapag kumikita ka na ng salapi. Napakagandang tanawin ang iyong mga mahal sa buhay ay masaya dahil natutulungan mo sila. Isang focus ninyo sa pag-aaral: ang tumanaw ng utang na loob (na hindi matatapos of course) sa mga magulang at mahal sa buhay na nagsikap upang makatapos kayo ng pag-aaral. Mahalin nang lubos ang inyong pamilya.

Kung kaya pa ng inyong pondo, promising naman ang college life. Kumpara sa amin noon, palagay ko, mas physically, emotionally, intellectually at socially mature ang inyong henerasyon. Mas matagal ang panahon ang inilagi ninyo sa high school.

Ibang iba ang college atmosphere. Mas demanding ang pag-aaral. Dapat matutunan mong maging mandirigma kapag stressful ang registration process every semester/term. Mas maraming lessons and reading materials kaya bawal ang tamad. Kung noong high school ay pumapasa ka kasi naaawa sa iyo ang mga guro mo, hindi na puwede ang ganiyang style sa tertiary level. You would be treated as adults by your professors. Sink or swim ang labanan sa maraming pagkakataon.

Choose a course according to your passion and strength. Mahirap kunin ang kursong sa simula pa lamang ay hindi mo na minamahal. Siguradong magi-struggle ka. Mahirap tuparin ang pangarap ng iba. Isyu ito sa marami lalo na sa mga kabataang pinapaaral ng mga mahal sa buhay na may conditionality ukol sa kursong nais nilang ipatapos. Ang aking payo: maaari mong subukan baka kasi matutunan mo ring mahalin. Pero kapag kakaiba na ang iyong performance at wala ka nang kapayapaan, huwag mo nang patagalin. Magsasayang ka lang ng pera at panahon. Lugi ka at ang nagpapaaral sa iyo.

Learn to deal with characters. You would meet in your college/university people of different stripes and colors. Be willing to understand before being understood. Develop your people skills lalo na kung may mga group project and activities. Mahirap gumawa ng thesis and research projects nang nag-iisa. Kayang-kaya mo pero mami-miss mo ang kakaibang saya.

Befriend your professors who could also be your life mentors after college. Absorb all their wisdom sa mga regular consultations and casual chats sa cafeteria kung may pagkakataon. Read their research and publications para may ideya ka kung paano maging disiplinado sa pag-iisip at pagsusulat.

Huwag panay libro ang kausap. Join campus organizations which further enhance your personality and skills. You must enjoy, not endure your college life. Ika nga ni Mark Twain, never let your studies interfere with your education.

ANO BA TALAGA ANG "CALLING" KO?

Lagi kong naririnig iyan sa mga kabataang kaga-graduate lang sa kolehiyo at mga young professionals na nababagot sa buhay. Nagtatanong si...