Two outstanding college students are to be acknowledged for their exemplary performance in the academic and co-curricular activities during the commencement rites on March 17 at the FU Green.
Mayflor V. Abiero, Bachelor in Secondary Education major in Filipino and Ivan Christopher B. Cordevilla, Bachelor of Science in Biology, emerged as this year’s Valedictorian and Salutatorian of Class 2018, respectively.
Abiero and Cordevilla may have focused on different disciplines yet they share commonalities in their perseverance to achieve academic excellence, practice their leadership skills and volunteerism during their college days.
The varied experiences, in a way, transformed and helped them to become better learners and individuals who are now ready to contribute to the betterment of society.
At first, Abiero wanted to pursue Civil Engineering after high school graduation but her parents, for practical reasons being the lone child, wanted her to become a teacher. She then gave in to the decision of her parents as she enrolled at Foundation University College of Education.
Abiero became a consistent honor since her freshman year. Her inspiration to achieve success are her mentors and of course, her father, Jane and mother, Ma. Lourdes. In achieving success, Abiero has a simple reason and it is nothing but to make her parents proud and happy.
Behind all the success was her means of motivation. Abiero mentioned that if she would garner high scores in quizzes and exams, she would give herself a treat by eating her favorite food.
For Abiero, the most challenging part of college life was during her sophomore year because she had to balance academics with co-curricular activities, as an officer of the student government.
Apart from the leadership experience, Abiero also talked about student teaching as another challenging part of her college days. For her, not only theories and philosophies learned are to be applied but most of all, the challenge lies in handling the students of today. But she was able to make it again with perseverance.
Abiero hails from Brgy. Nagbo-alao in Basay town, far south of Negros Oriental. She envisions herself, in ten years, that she would be earning a post-graduate degree in education and some other related disciplines.
And for the young who want to achieve more during their college days, Abiero shared: “Always remember in everything we do, do it passionately, and always believe that you can make it.”
On the other hand, Cordevilla’s countless engagements outside the campus has made his experience a different and enriching one, not only as a biology student but also as a budding leader and aspiring debater.
But unlike Abiero who graduated with flying colors from her elementary and high school days, Cordevilla shared that he was below average back then. Instead, he was more focused on co-curricular aspects such as folk dancing, journalism, public speaking and other activities that enhanced his self-confidence.
Despite the discouragements, Cordevilla decided to start anew upon entering college at Foundation University College of Arts and Sciences as a Biology major. He looked at discouraging comments as reasons for him to be a consistent honor student in his whole college life.
The positive drive to succeed and the constant encouragement and support from his parents: Chucho and Imelda, relatives, friends and mentors kept him going.
In fact, he was chosen as one of the participants of the Ayala Leaders’ Congress in 2017 – a rare opportunity for student leaders around the country and later, was picked as rapporteur to serve as one of the facilitators of the said congress this year. Apart from that, he also represented the country in the ASEAN Youth Summit and the 3rd ASEAN Foundation Model ASEAN Meeting.
The network he has established with fellow youth leaders around the country and around Asia has enriched his knowledge and experience in leadership, cultural understanding and community development work, more specifically with environmental advocacy.
During the course of his college days, Cordevilla was a member of the Corps of Ushers at Foundation University. One could notice his commitment in doing the work by making himself available during important events in the University.
In the end, Cordevilla humbly shared the reason behind the hard work he has exerted and that sprung from their family’s situation back in his childhood. According to him, they lived in a home with “nipa” roof and there were times that he has to climb the roof in order to cover the leak that became an entry point of rainwater into the house’s interior.