Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Reaching that End Road of my M.A. Journey

The past two days of graduation activities has been a fantastic way for me to mark the two years of my M.A. journey. It gave me the opportunity to celebrate another milestone in my life with family and friends, classmates and mentors. The gown and cap and hood are such poignant tradition that filled me with happiness as I finally reached that end road of my M.A. journey...

Only in MSU GSC: That giant fan to ease the heat inside the gym. :-)

For this year, the speaker for our baccalarueate was Atty. Eufemio A. Simtim, a 32-year old accomplished MSU GSC alumnus who practices his law profession in the City of Koronadal. We heard oh's and ah's as his biography was read. On top of his academic achievements, the delight of the female species in the house when it was announced that he is still single. His speech was well crafted, an encouragement to make a change to the big world that awaits before us!

The awarding came next. For this year, a Cum Laude from the College of Education topped the graduating class. We were talking at the back that the honor list this year was surprisingly short. We were kind of expecting of higher honors especially from the Accountancy and Engineering courses. That, it seemed few years back, gives the real batch buzz. 

After the baccalarueate program, we had a brief rehearsal, or should I appropriately say a brief orientation of what to expect for the graduation the next day, like when to perfectly stand and clap and sit, etc. It was really our first and then the last practice for the big day. Things that I can say - only in MSU!

So, from the gymnasium, we walked to CSSH Building from where we thought a glitzy yearbook pictorial was happening. But, alas, not even a shadow of camera! A staff boy inside directed  us to a certain SSC Building near the lady's dorm. At first we hesitated because all we knew is that SSC used to share building only at the Office of the Student Affairs. But oh boy, its been so long and a lot has happened more than four years ago since we set off the portals of our beloved university!

Just a stone's throw away, we were among the first to arrive in the so called SSC Building. Right, it exists and it's cozy though. We were taking a queue to get our priority number for the yearbook pictorial when, presto, the most unwelcome brownout hit the town! Now, it was more FAN in GenSan!

Those smile of feat.
The big day then came as warm as the sting of the bee in the middle of summer - 34th Commencement Exercises - as etched in the big stage of the MSU Gym. After a while of congratulations and pictorials outside, the most awesome rampage towards the gym began. Beaming with pride aside, I felt so tall it seemed I could reach the sky. I heard somebody called my name and I spotted a circle of my past mentors in the college who were waving and smiling to me in a corner.

It took an ounce of patience to really endure sitting. The longest part of the ceremony was the distribution of diploma. That was when each of the college dean called out the names of the graduates. It was in the middle of it when the program was cut short to pave way for the arrival of our lady commencement speaker. The university officials met her at the gym portal in a festive manner.

Our commencement speaker doesn't have a name that rung a bell to many. She was Hon. Sec. Teresita Quintos Deles, the Presidential Adviser on Peace Process. She had gray hair, but strong and active at that. She transported us back to the communal events that makes GenSan and Mindanao our distinct home. And then she talked mostly about the future and what we, the graduates, might do to build a country that loves peace.

The diploma distribution went on after the speech. Lucky were the graduates of College of Engineering who personally shook hands with the grand mademoiselle as she personally handed the diploma to them. When she was sent off by the university officials, all we could whisper to her was: Peace be with you until then, grand mademoiselle.

Then it simply felt mixed emotions singing the University Hymn before the recessional. I heard voices of relief and joy and pride and victory echoed across the gym. There were shouts and whoops and smiles for the cameras. There were tears and claps and whistles as we all marched out the portals of the university gym...

Real hats off goes to our great university, MSU! Dakilang Paaralan, Pamantasang Mindanaooooo!

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