Please follow my other Tumblr:
I’ve been planning on writing an entry for a while. Well, you know how it goes. I was caught up in the hurly-burly of life again.
So, I just celebrated my 22nd birthday a few days ago. It’s weird that I somehow ended up celebrating with Project NOAH people. I mean, they are my friends, but among them, perhaps only Kenneth and Phillip are the people I actually consider close. And besides, Project NOAH has a not-so-nice reputation among the senior ICE faculty. I don’t want to involve myself in the political issues, but come to think of it, why are Geology people dabbling with typhoons and flooding? Our senior faculty believe that they aren’t equipped with proper knowledge to produce accurate results. That’s something I can believe to some degree, seeing as Project NOAH, even though it’s under NIGS, employs quite a lot of ICE graduates. Maybe the NIGS people do recognize that civil engineers are the ones who should really be running that show. Anyway.
Going back, I am once again facing crossroads. It’s been two years since I began teaching in ICE. According to my original plan, it’s about time to quit. People around me seem to be pointing me in that direction as well. My adviser, Prof. Castro, told me that he thinks I and Maxell have entered a hiatus in terms of planning our futures. He has been egging me on to apply for admission into a university overseas. He actually seems to have a plan laid out for me already. He’s encouraging me to go to United Nations University (in Japan), which was our partner in the Ifugao Rice Terraces study. Then, he says, after graduating from UNU, I’d be employed by none other than UN itself, and after working with UN for about ten years, I can go back comfortably (meaning, financially stable) to UP. Quite an enticing path, wouldn’t you say? I’d probably get to travel a lot working for UN, and globetrotting is something I really want to do.
Meanwhile, Phillip, who is regrettably still one of the smartest guys I know, says that leaving ICE was the best decision he ever made. He called it right when he said that taking your MS in UP would just be a repeat of the undergrad subjects, since there are many non-UP graduates who enroll to the graduate programs in the university. That’s more or less what happened to me this semester, and I’m sure Maxell would say the same thing. We are classmates after all. I can’t say it was a waste of time though. This time, I was able to focus more on the subject matter because I was only taking 6 units, as opposed to the usual 18 units in undergrad. But I am disappointed to some degree, yes. Disillusioned is probably the right word. I don’t know. Maybe it gets better.
Those who left the Institute a few years ago have finished their MS degrees already: Ma’am Cherry and Ma’am Sandy, and even Sir Punzal (who was my sworn enemy during my days as an SA). They seem to be better off with their lives now. And I don’t think they regret the decision they made.
Meanwhile, those who stayed like Ma’am Dora and Ma’am Lestelle- they’ve been at it or around five years now, but still, no MS degree.
Prof. Castro even once suggested to me resigning from ICE and just availing the ERDT scholarship if I didn’t want to leave the country. That way, I’d be a full-time student and be forced to finish MS in two years. He says sacrificing a little of your income now to finish your graduate studies earlier is an investment in your future.
Kuya Dennis, who was my partner during the UPCAT, told me he recently got an Australian Awards Scholarship to obtain his PhD in Australia. He told me that other colleges, such as Educ from where he hails from, envy Engineering because of the ERDT and the immense support the college gives to its faculty members wishing to obtain advanced degrees overseas.
I think I do still see myself as an old slightly nutty professor with graying hair talking to a bunch of highly energetic youngsters. But at this point, honestly, I don’t even know if I can still call myself a teacher. Being perfectly honest here, it seems I’ve reached a point where I don’t care anymore for the passing rates of my students. I’ve failed so many students before that it doesn’t sting anymore to input a 5.0 in CRS. You just get used to it.
So maybe it is time to take a break.
What’s actually holding me back from applying to UNU is that the whole thought of studying in Japan is not really that appealing to me. Well, I took Hapon 10 for the possibility of such scenario in the future. But honestly, given the choice, I’d really prefer to study in Europe or the US. Japan, Australia, and Singapore follow distantly. Then even further behind them are the universities within ASEAN with which UP has direct links for scholarships: universities in Thailand, Indonesia, Cambodia, etc.
I’m also hesitating since I know it’s such a competitive arena: the quest for international scholarships in renowned programs and universities, that is. I remember the stories of how Ma’am Claire was so devastated when she found out she didn’t get into Tokyo University. Right now, we’re still not sure if Sir Harold got into the Erasmus Mundus program he was waitlisted for. Meanwhile, Sir Jaylord confidently declares that he will get an international scholarship if only through faith.
This sembreak, I’ll start self-reviewing for IELTS, TOEFL, and GRE, even though many of my friends who took them say that they’re pretty easy. Maybe I can get a better grip on what I want to do once I get an international English qualification.
Anyway, before making such big decisions, I still have to decide what to do on Thursday night. My Thursday group friends want me to treat them to a post-birthday celebration. Meanwhile, Jonah wants me to attend this workshop for young male professionals called “The Executive Mentors” which features speakers who are at the top of their games (CEOs, Presidents, Directors, etc.) She says it’s perfect for me, though personally, I’m not sure how an academician would fit in with a crowd from the corporate world. I hope Gino goes so I can at least have someone to talk to if ever I do decide to attend that workshop. Arrgggh. What’s a man to do?
Sayang naman ‘to kung hindi ko ipa-publish somewhere. My rejected lay-out of the front page. Mas gusto nila yung mukhang magazine eh. Article is mine also.
Why don’t you just admit na favorite mo talaga siya kaya you can’t just scrap her shitty article, you old fart!
Well honestly, this is a little how I feel right now. I spent an entire weekend working on an article because I was asked to edit the original one. Well guess what, there’s just so much editing you can do with a shitty piece. I opted to retain maybe one or two sentences, then just throw the rest of it out.
I am not sourgraping or anything. But it came from the old man himself: “I’d like to retain ***’s article, if only not to hurt her feelings.”
Okay, eh di sana hindi mo na lang pina-edit sa akin. The difference in our levels of taste and skill in writing is so markedly pronounced, that you can’t just ask me to make my writing appear to be in the same league as hers. To think the old man himself had a lot of comments about the original one too; I was just trying to incorporate all those remarks into an article that could satisfy his requirements.
Hay naku, mga Pinoy talaga. Sige! Bahala kayo dyan sa kalalabasan nyang newsletter niyo. Don’t bother listing me as project coordinator/ editor-in-chief too. Apparently, I have no creative control over what goes into that publication anyway.