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MARCH 2014

OFFICIAL NEWSLETTER OF THE ACADEMIC STAFF OF UP BAGUIO

Unanimous choice for second


Darnay Demetillo Artist Award
Chancellor Rovillos cites the Award as a celebration of excellence
 By VICTORIA COSTINA

(From left) CAC Dean Anna Christie Torres, Romeo Rosete IV and Maisa Demetillo

The legacy of Darnay Demetillo is


not difficult to define. Excellence
marked all of his works, in most every
medium he employed. One remembers
his watercolours, awash with the blues
of skies and oceans, and the pristine
grays of sand and distant shores. His
portraits were arresting, strong
renditions of every subject, including
himself. A favoured mode too were

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Science lectures
 Aris Reginaldo

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Taboan
conference
 Io Jularbal

wood and rubber cuts worked with


precision and understanding: think of
his interpretation of Baguio City Hall
viewed from Burnham Lake, and of
Wright Parks ponies (before these
horses manes were dyed anime pinks
and yellows by their handlers), and his
whimsical, guitar-playing solitaries.
His was an artistic technique honed
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6-7

Ibaloi Festival
 Jimmy Fong and
Carmen Kirk

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At NUS
 Marchellene Caday

ISSN 0119-6634

Romeo Rosete IV,


awardee
Paintings by CFA major Romeo
Rosete IV share a common feature: a
central figure, foregrounded, enveloped
by images that complete the thematic
content of the painting. One painting
Penitence, has a man, barebacked,
crowned with thorns, and whiplashing
himself. A frame to the sufferer are a host
of grotesquerie that can be seen as
embodiments of societal judgments, or his
inner demons, imaged as gawking,
sharptoothed antagonists. This may be a
common enough subject, but Rosetes
work is compelling for both the drama
and the maturity of technique, for both
depth and detailed rendering.
Rosete says that a work begins, for
him, with a feeling, or with internal
struggles that find expression on canvas.
Sketches take on shape and direction as
he works. An initial layer of paint is
followed by several others, image upon
image, until he sees the soul of a work
coming through.
Rosete never had Darnay for a
teacher but his older brother who also
graduated from UP Baguio, in Fine Arts,
was a student of Prof. Demetillo. Romeo,
even as a senior in high school, was
acquainted with the works of Darnay and
spoke of the artists versatility. Romeo
is grateful for the Award and now
continues to spend long hours painting.
Such commitment is also in the legacy of
the master. 

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Like a Sir
 Rainier Dela Cruz

12

Bangkok
conference
 Rosario Florendo

Report

Unanimous choice, from page 1


to perfection, with open, evolving styles, and a thoughtful
caring for his subjects. All these shaped the creativity of
Darnay Demetillo who taught Fine Arts for several
decades, and also served as Artist-in-Residence at UP
Baguio. He was the key organizer of the Tahong Bundok,
a guild of artists in Baguio.
The Darnay Demetillo Artist Award was instituted as
a way of passing on this commitment to excellence in the
visual arts. At the awarding program held on February
14, Dr. Anna Christie Torres, Dean of the College of Arts
and Communication, spoke of the Award as a primary
motivation for sustaining the legacy of Darnay Demetillo.
Prof. Junley Lazaga, head of the Department of Language,
Literature and the Arts, sees the Award as a call to students
to be honest and serious about their craft. Eight visual
arts majors from various year levels in the Fine Arts
program at CAC were nominated. The judges unanimous
choice for the Award based on originality, craftsmanship,
technique and seriousness was Romeo Rosete IV, now

in his final year for a Certificate in Fine Arts.


Serving as judges were Prof. Reynaldo Concepcion of
the College of Fine Arts, UP Diliman; Kelly Ramos, also
of CFA, and Earl Desuasido, former instructor for FA at
UP Baguio. Prof. Concepcion spoke of the young artists
as kindred spirits of Darnay. He commended Rosetes
art as original, creative and [having] the strongest visual
impact. Buong-buo yung trabaho. Desuasido added that
Rosetes paintings captured him most, visually. He
advised Rosete to constantly practice his skills, working
on his craft by constant exposure to the medium. Ramos
also commended Rosete for work that matches the
vision.
Among those present at the awarding were Maisa
Demetillo, one of the daughters of Darnay Demetillo,
College deans and faculty, members of the Executive Staff
led by Chancellor Raymundo Rovillos, and students of
CAC. Rosete received a box of paints and brushes sent in
by Gloria Orden, based in the US.

A young masters works: (from left) Holier than Thou; The Truth; Penitence

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March 2014

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Lectures held for College of Science Week


By ARIS REGINALDO

Ten speakers from UP Baguio and UP


Diliman delivered lectures during the annual celebration of College Week at the
College of Science. The talks covered various topics: Applied Analyses (Mathematics), Human Kinetics, Ecology and Taxonomy (Biology), Chemistry, and Management of Chemicals. Several of these talks
were delivered as Professorial Chair Lectures, some are results of recent researches and others are studies that were presented in recent international conferences.
All speakers who delivered Professorial Chair Lectures
were from UP Baguio, namely, Dr. Juancho Collera (Department of Mathematics and Computer Science), Prof. Fernando
Florendo (Human Kinetics) and myself (Department of Biology). Using numerical bifurcation analysis, Dr. Collera
discussed identifying symmetry-breaking bifurcation in a system with dihedral symmetry groups. Prof. Florendo, on the
other hand, presented the results of his research on the effects of dance aerobics and weight training on the body fat
percentage of female students of UP Baguio. I presented the
general and specific patterns of responses of non-native (pest)
small mammals (rats, mice, shrews) in relation to varying
degrees of habitat disturbances in the southern Cordillera region. In another lecture I focused on the same topic in Ecology, but in this other paper, the responses of native species
(mostly, endemic to the Philippines) to different levels of disturbances were presented. The latter lecture was first presented at the International Mammalogical Congress, held in
the United Kingdom in August 2013.
The other speakers from UP Baguio were Dr. Jerico Bacani
from DMCS, Liezel Magtoto and Dr. Zenaida Baoanan, both
from the Department of Biology, and Dr. Ofelia Giron from
the Department of Physical Sciences. Dr. Bacani presented a
paper that makes use of shape optimization technique in
solving Bernouli free boundary problems. The talk was also
previously presented during the International Conference on
Mathematics and Computing, held in India in December 2013.
In the same conference, Dr. Bacani was awarded a best paper

March 2014

presentation. Ms. Magtoto shared the unexpected encounter and eventual identification
of a new plant species (Amorphophalus
adamsensis) through photography.
Dr. Girons talk focused on a new field
in chemical sciences, known as green chemistry. According to her, this new field promotes
design and processes that minimize the use
and generation of hazardous substances through development
of environmentally sustainable and economically attractive
solutions. Dr. Baoanan also shared the results of her training
in Brunei on the risk assessment and management of chemicals. In addition to presenting basic principles and concepts
on this topic, she also presented a possible direction for UP
in the management of chemicals.
Two other speakers from the Institute of Environmental
Science and Meteorology in UP Diliman joined the roster of
speakers from UP Baguio. Dr. Benjamin Vallejo, Jr., a faculty member of the Institute, talked about the concept of
climate envelope models and their uses. According to him,
these models are useful to resource managers because the distributional range of organisms as affected by environmental
change may be predicted. The other speaker was Roberto
Badrina, an MS student of the same Institute. The focus of
his lecture was on the design and use of a model that determines the impact of land cover changes on the Philippine climate.
Faculty and students from the College of Science attended
the lectures, along with visitors from the Department of Agriculture-CAR. Focus of discussion was on the methodology
of each research and possible collaborations.
The lectures, held on February 5 and 14, were organized
by the College of Science Lecture Series Committee, headed
by Dr. Jerico Bacani, in partnership with the Student Council through its College of Science Representative Christian
Roman.

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Report

Taboan 2014: National Commission for Culture and the Arts

Winds and Waves, Wars and Words


 By IO JULARBAL
The annual National Commission for Culture and the Arts
(NCCA) Philippine Writers Festival, more popularly known as
the Taboan, is an avenue for upcoming and professional writers
in the country to further improve their skills through an exchange of new ideas and concepts.
This years Taboan was held at the Subic Holiday Villas, Subic
Freeport Zone, Zambales. The 3-day festival which started on
February 24 garnered participants from all over the Philippines,
presenting an array of various writing styles, cultures, and experiences. But the festival does not only cater to writers per se, it
also makes its mark as a hub for scholars, researchers, teachers,
and good ole lovers of literature. For this year, the festival theme
was Winds and Waves, Wars and Words, reflecting the various conditions the country has gone through since last year. In
fact typhoons, earthquakes, skirmishes, among others, are what
the country has to go through on a regular basis. The Taboan
sees these not as hindrances but as a thrust for social awareness
and expression.
Taboan is a Visayan word for marketplace where the exchange
of goods and services takes place. For the NCCA the Taboan is
a marketplace where participants could get and give at the same
time. At the festival, your wallet is your skill, your bayong is
your brain and knowledge is the commodity. The festival is in-

With Bienvenido Lumbera and Dr. Epifanio San Juan, Jr.

deed a place for


learning, teaching, and sharing,
all for the cause
of enriching
Philippine literary culture.
The festival
hosted several
talks from some
of the most respected Filipino
figures in literature, including
Philippine Na- Keynote Speaker Dr. Michael Tan, Chancellor
tional Artists for of UP Diliman
Literature
Bienvenido Lumbera and Virgilio Almario. Also there to share
their thoughts and ideas were, among others, Dr. Michael Tan,
UP Diliman Chancellor and Philippine Daily Inquirer columnist; novelist, essayist, and short story writer Cristina Pantoja
Hidalgo; Director of the Literary Arts Division of the Cultural
Center of the Philippines Herminio Beltran; poet and performance art therapist Victor Emmanuel
Nadera Jr., and Dr. Priscilla Macansantos,
head of the NCCA National Committee on
Literary Arts.
The Sessions, Lessons, and Happenings
The festival formally opened with a
marching band and cultural dancers greeting
the participants just outside the venue
grounds. Hosted by the vibrant and ever energetic Cecile Yumul, the session started with
several speeches, led by NCCA Chair, Prof.
Jun De Leon, who discussed how important
literature is especially in identity and in self
respect. Festival Director Julliet Mallari also
took the podium and gave the participants
an overview on the Taboan. Dr. Michael Tan,
keynote speaker for the event in his typical
Pinoy Kasi style would elaborate on the
continued next page

TI SIMILLA

March 2014

Report
festivals
t h e m e ,
mentioning
that resilience should
not be a reason to not
strive for
b e t t e r
things in
l i f e .
Olongapo
C i t y
Mayor,
R o l e n
Paulino,
With Dr. Priscilla Macansantos and Aeta performers during the festival opening
b a r e l y
catching his
breath, would also take the time to wel- writer class, referring to them as not new
come the participants and thank the writers but writers using new media.
NCCA for bringing the writers festival Virgilio Almario on the other hand was
to Subic.
bombarded by questions concerning the
The festival offered several parallel ple- Philippine alphabet and the controversial
nary sessions with an array of topics: the P and F issue. He would reply by saying
Internet and the revival of literatures; Ang that our old alphabet does not cater to so
Pagsulat Bilang Hanapbuhay; The Critic as many sounds in the country and that it
Intermediary; Literature and Nation has to evolve to be more ethno-linguistiBuilding, just to name a few. What sets cally viable.
Taboan apart from other writers conferI was fortunate enough to be a panelences is the fact that the Taboan is not a ist in one of the sessions, The Natural
paper reading conference. Designated pan- Life of the World: Translation as Preserelists are encouraged to speak right off the vation. Aptly, because I am currently
bat and have a free flowing discourse with part of a Cordillera Language Documenthe audience, ergo a free exchange of ideas. tation project involving translation and
In Taboan academic boundaries are indeed preservation. Stopping myself from preblurred because everyone is given a voice senting yet another Igorot-laced tirade, I
and a chance to be heard. Though it was ended up discussing post-colonial indigimpossible to attend all the parallel ses- enous views and subaltern speak. Lucksions, here are things I learned from some ily, fellow highlander and fellow writer
of the sessions I was able to attend:
Johnny Buhay was with me on the panel
Panitikan sa Panahon ng Delubyo: and so began the tirade. For our panel, a
the Literature of Disaster was a plenary major point of discussion was the fact that
treat for everyone, featuring two of the even if considered as a tool for preservacountrys National Artists for Literature, tion, translation can be very destructive
Bienvenido Lumbera and Virgilio if done incorrectly. Mr. Buhay used the
Almario. In their session Bienvenido translation of the Ifugao Hudhud as an exLumbera discussed matters concerning ample, stating that translating the Hudhud
social media and the emerging online- is not exactly recreating the Hudhud, but

March 2014

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simply a
textual interpretation
of it. He
continues,
there
is
more in the
Hudhud
than just
mere words,
it is a way of
life, culture,
and tradition. Ironic a l l y ,
present in
the audience
was
Rio
Alma who has written a translation of
Hudhud in Filipino. And here comes a selfserving lifting of the bangko. Our panel
garnered several fans due to its more or
less indigenous-fueled discourse. Though
several questions were thrown at the
panel, these came as mere reiterations of
our statements. Ill assume that more hardhitting questions were not asked simply
because the audience was satisfied with
what we had to say or maybe they were
afraid wed start chopping their heads off
if they had queries. Afterwards, several invites for future lectures were given, hands
were shaken, and signatures and photos
were taken. It was a good day.
In Wounded Writers: Yielding Vulnerability for Insight, the effects of literature as a tool for healing were discussed.
First on the podium was Dr. Vim Nadera
who shared his experiences in applying
poetry as an activity for cancer patients.
Based on his findings, poetry seems to ease
the anxiety of dying and provides a better
outlook in life. Nadera hopes that one day
the Philippine medical community would
seriously consider using reading and writing literature as part of medical therapy.
Next to share his thoughts was Fr. Albert
continued on page 11

Report

Notes on the first Ibaloi Festival


By JIMMY FONG

The Onjon ni Ivadoy Association has a membership


of at least 3,000 here and abroad

Overshadowed by Baguios 19-year-old


Carios struggle for Native Title and to
flower festival, the first Ibaloi Festival
give due recognition to the original
managed to be the alternative festival at
indigenous inhabitants of the City. This
Burnham Park. Starting with a parade on
was followed by ORDINANCE
February 2, the festival was held on the
Numbered 09 (Series of 2013)
weekends of February , culminating on the
institutionalizing the Ibaloi Day and
23rd, Ibaloi Day. The festival included
making it a regular activity of the City
workshops on Ibaloy music and dance,
Government of Baguio. Later, on 16
rituals and ritual utensils, language and
August 2010, the City Council would
language arts, and plenty of entertainment.
designate that portion of Burnham Park
The Ibaloy (also spelled Ivadoy,
between the childrens playground and the
Ibadoy, Ibaloi [the spelling used in most
city orchidarium as site for the Mateo
legal papers], Ibaluy) are the indigenous
Cario monument and as an Ibaloi
people in and around Baguio. Baguio, of
Heritage Garden (RESOLUTION
course, is another spelling of the Ibaloy
NUMBERED 182 [Series of 2010]).
word bagiw that means moss. Before the
After a series of informal and formal
creation of legal boundaries, the Ibaloy
meetings of the leaders and other interested
considered each other as comrades and
parties in and around Baguio, the Onjon
relatives as shown when they invite each
ni Ivadoy (Union of Ibaloys) Association
other to participate in their prestige and
was organized in 2010 and registered as a
wealth-sharing feasts. Cooperative work
non-stock and non-profit association with
and community activities also characterize
the Securities and Exchange Commission
traditional Ibaloy life.
on 14 January 2011. The incorporators
Colonization and Philippine nation- Dr. Jimmy Fong and Teresa Goron
include Ibaloy men and women who have
state building dispersed and divided the
distinguished themselves in their vocations
Ibaloy into barangays, towns and
as teachers, government officers, business
provinces, a historical phenomenon that somehow affected how Filipinos people, professionals and private individuals and youth. As a legitimate
in general perceive and relate with each other, often based on imagined association, the Onjon has updated organizational and financial reports
perceptions of irreconcilable differences. This situation would become with the SEC and the BIR.
apparent in the dynamic processes involved in the growth of Baguio as
The purposes for which the association has been incorporated are:
a city and secondary national capital. As they were systematically pushed to unite the Ibaloy tribe of Baguio and Benguet wherever they reside; to
out of Baguio through the appropriation of their lands for government perpetuate the cultural customs, traditions and language of their Ibaloy
use, and the invasion of the city by other Filipinos, the Ibaloys would ancestors; to educate the younger members about the history, customs,
eventually become a minority in their traditional domain.
traditions and language of the Ibaloys; to foster love, fellowship and
During the last decades of the 20th century and the early years of the cooperation among the members and non-members; and to provide
21st, the Ibaloy of Baguio and Benguet organized formal and informal mutual assistance to sick, elderly and indigent Ibaloys.
gatherings for fellowship and celebrations of traditional feasts. The
At present, the Onjon ni Ivadoy Association has a membership of
diaspora of Ibaloys all over the country and the world also necessitated at least 3,000 persons from Baguio, Benguet, the rest of the country and
such gatherings.
overseas.
Ibaloy meetings and celebrations have become regular in Baguio,
In February 2010, the first Ibaloi Day was celebrated at the Ibaloi
mostly at Burnham Park. Through the leadership of members of Heritage Garden, spearheaded by the Onjon ni Ivadoy Association.
prominent Baguio Ibaloy families like the late Cecile Cario Afable, the The occasion included ritual offerings to the ancestors, traditional prayers,
city government began to take notice and declared February 23 of every preparation and serving of traditional food and wine, playing of
year as Ibaloi Day in the city of Baguio. The declaration was made on 28 indigenous instruments and performance of festival dances. Participants
September 2009 (RESOLUTION Numbered 395 [Series of 2009). In included organized cultural groups and representatives from Ibaloy towns
its resolution, the Sangguniang Panlungsod justified the date as the day in Benguet, Ibaloy residents in Baguio and Benguet, city, town and
when the US Supreme Court recognized the legitimacy of Mateo
continued next page

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March 2014

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Ibaloi Festival, from page 6


provincial officials and some overseas Ibaloys. Sacrificial
animals and other materials were contributed by the members
and their leaders.
The same celebrations were held in 2011, 2012 and 2013
with generous support from Baguio and Benguet provincial
and town officials. Despite being held during the Panagbenga
Flower Festival season in Baguio, the Ibaloi Festival/Day
celebration managed to draw its own participants and
audience.
Shared tasks among Ibaloi women

A golden opportunity
 By CARMEN DOMINGO KIRK
February 22 and 23 this year proved significant for me, an academic
who aspires to do research on a group of inhabitants in one of the most
stunning, inspiring places amidst the Gran Cordillera. As an
anthropologist doing a lifetime study of feminism and religion, I feel
privileged that I finally have the time and opportunity to be able to
pursue these two topics here in Benguet.
My proposed topic of research is on the lived experiences of Ibaloy
women at the turn of the century and changes that have happened since
then. Questions I am interested in asking entail the lived experiences of
Ibaloy women at present as well. As I review the literature on the different
ethnolinguistic groups in the Cordillera, I see that the Ifugao, Mountain
Province (Bontoc) and Kalinga are well studied. But I find that materials
on the Ibaloy are rare. Yet Baguio City was once home ground of the
Ibaloy.
The First Ibaloy Festival was a coming together, a coming home
that I witnessed as greetings were made from individuals who had not
seen each other for sometime.
My research topic, Ibaloy Women, was greatly enhanced when I
met at the festival Ibaloy women from Itogon, La Trinidad, Tuba,
Tublay, Camp 7 and Kabayan. This was a golden opportunity that
does not happen often. The festival was an instant introduction to the
different aspects of Ibaloy culture laid before my eyes. The tents set up
were dwarfed by a prominent structure, a hastily built Ibaloy house
built with huge bamboos as posts in lieu of the ban on pine wood.
Truly the statement that the Ibaloys made use of what nature has
provided, is evident in the use of the reed (we call runo), from the stick
itself to the leaves used as material for roofing.
Several rituals were shown, dances were performed and several
ongoing workshops covered dancing, step by step, how to wear an
Ibaloy costume, food preparation like brewing rice wine (tafey) and
cooking sweet potatoes. Poetry reading was held.

March 2014

Finally there
was a language
workshop using
a
linguistic
approach in
learning
a
language. This
was conducted
by Dr. Jimmy
Fong, a faculty
member of UP
Baguio, College
of Arts and
Communication.
Dr. Fong is an
avid
Ibaloy
cultural worker
whose passion is Dr. Kirk at Ibaloi festival
so evident. I
asked permission
once to observe his class on the Ibaloy language. I have tackled English,
Spanish and French without much trouble but Ibaloy proves to be a
challenge.
The communal chanting was most impressive. I closed my eyes to
truly savor the sound of a community being led and responding in
unison.

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Travelling Scholar Story


Looking back

Leadership enrichment
at the National University
of Singapore The most promising of student leaders
By MARCHELLENE CADAY
National University of Singapore
(NUS) notched the 1st spot in the 2013 QS
University rankings among ASEAN universities. It is also dubbed as the leading
global university centered in Asia, leveraging on global alliances with the best universities across the globe. UP for one, has
been its core partner university for the
past few years. Apart from this, NUS has
dynamic student exchange programmes,
actively accommodating 1,300 culturallydiverse and intellectually-promising students from 100 countries worldwide.
When I was in my sophomore year, I
got the opportunity to be the sole UP student exchange representative for the
Temasek Foundation National University
of Singapore-Leadership Enrichment and
Regional Networking (TF-NUS-LEaRN)
Programme. The TF-NUS-LEaRN scholarship award is funded by Temasek Foundation, Singapore to promote student exchanges between NUS and partner uni-

With fellow TF-NUS LEaRN scholars

in the ASEAN undergo training at NUS


versities in ASEAN, India, China, Hong
Kong, Japan, Korea and Taiwan. With the
objective of grooming the next generation
of Asian leaders and with a special focus
on the ASEAN region, the programme
aims to sponsor academic achievers and
student leaders for exchange and community involvement across Asia.
I can vividly remember how euphoric
the feeling was when I arrived in the
cleanest country of Singapore. I was very
much in awe of the taxi drivers dressed
up in suit coats, like they were attending
a prestigious ball. Singaporeans are very
helpful too especially for one like me who
is not good at reading maps accurately.
My host family, Mr. and Mrs. Ngiam,
acquainted me about Singapores best the
food, the places, the people, the culture,
the way of life. They were very hospitable
and they never failed to remind me about
the importance of education that education is my future. They told me that after
graduating from
college, I
could go
back to
SG and
they were
willing to
reach out
if I plan to
look for a
job. I answered
politely
that Ill
serve my
country

TI SIMILLA

Marchellene Caday

first and probably go back to SG for future academic pursuits, if offered another
opportunity, or I could otherwise just
gladly visit them.
All the modules I took at NUS were
not too different from UP well, studying has never been a piece of cake. The
grading system is quite dissimilar, however, because the highest grade that a student can get is 5.0 (A+) and the lowest is
1.0 (D-). Whereas in UP, uno (1.0) is a
nerds grade and singko (5.0) is a students
reflection of psychological distress and
emotional heartbreak. Apart from the academic requirement of passing all the
courses and of at least getting a GWA of
3.0 (C+), we were also mandated to collaborate with a volunteer network group
for community involvement. I became a
member then of SG Cares, the largest nonprofit volunteer organization in
Singapore. I successfully completed my
volunteer hours by taking part in various
activities, from interpersonal provisions
such as tutoring primary students, befriending the elders, sketching with mencontinued on page 11

March 2014

Essay

Like a Sir
 By RAINIER RIC DELA CRUZ

Whenever people ask me what I do for a living and I tell


them that I teach, the first reaction I get is disbelief. Most say I
look too young for the part. Sometimes I feel flattered by the
compliment. Other times, I feel slightly insulted with what I
perceive to be a stereotype. Are all teachers supposed to look
old? Not knowing how to react, I just smile and tell them that
appearances are often deceiving.
Once they get over their incredulity, many inquire about
what I teach. So I explain that I handle courses in economics and
statistics at UP Baguio. More stereotypes, more headshaking.
Economics? Wow, you must be really good in Math. UP? Radical. All throughout, I keep that smile pasted on my (apparently
young-looking) face.
The more inquisitive ones go further, and ask why I decided
to teach. Well, where and how do I begin? Becoming a teacher is
by no means an easy choice to make. To be honest, I never really planned on being one. When I entered the university, my
goal was to work in a fancy company and land a job with an
impressive title and lucrative salary to match. Typical college
dream, I suppose. Right before graduation, however, I began to
consider things from a different perspective. I realized that the
things I thought mattered the most are actually the least important. Sure, a high salary is always a practical consideration yet
its never the be-all and end-all of things. I remember one of my
professors saying, If all you wanted to do is to make a lot of
money, then go find a rich employer. But thats not what youre
in UP for. Youre here because you can make a difference.
I realized she was right. And what better way to make a difference than to guide the younger generation? Yeah, I know,
Im still young, too (at least relatively). I may not yet possess the
wisdom that they say comes with age. But youth is not without
its advantages. For one, the idealism that has been kindled by
learning still burns bright, along with that insatiable passion for
new knowledge. Plus, young people always seem less intransigent. We are not set in our ways and are more open to fresh
ideas. Thus, students are always less inhibited and are more willing to interact with younger faculty members. Maybe thats also
because we can relate to them better. Do not get me wrong. All
the teachers I have met, regardless of age, are open to debates
and welcome inputs from students. Its just that the older a teacher
gets, the more intimidating he/she seems to become. I should
know. I have been a student not that long ago.
Many students think of their teachers as second parents. But
I would like to think of younger educators, like me, as their
elder brothers or sisters. Like older siblings we have authority
over them, we know more than they do, and yet we could still

March 2014

relate with what they


are going through.
We may boss them
around, a little, we
may scold them from
time to time, and yet
we are there whenever they need a piece
of advice.
Economics: The
Science of Choice
In my two years
of stay in the university,
I have handled several
courses that cater to students from different year
levels. I have employed
different approaches in
teaching, from lectures Rainier Dela Cruz
to group work and reporting. I also found that recapping the
previous discussion is an effective way to stimulate the class,
with a sprinkling of jokes and brainteasers to help me along the
way. I must admit I am not the song-and-dance type. Im pretty
old school, actually. If everything else fails, there is always chalk
and talk.
Every class I teach has been an adventure, but I have to say
the most interesting subjects are often those which cater to freshmen students. Take Economics 11, for instance. It is an Introductory Economics course offered to students of BA Social Sciences majoring in Economics and BS Management Economics.
As I usually say on the first day, this subject is their first taste of
the exciting world that is economics. Excitement, of course, is
always relative, and any teacher would tell you its quite the
challenge to make every subject live up to students expectations. But Econ 11 is especially challenging since it is the litmus
test that may influence their decision to continue with the program or not. Well, no pressure there.
The first lesson in Economics is scarcity. Every resource we
use in the production of goods and services that would satisfy
our needs and wants has a limit. Therefore, every economic agent
has to make choices in the most efficient way possible, with
consumers aiming to maximize the satisfaction they derive from
consumption and producers wanting to maximize their profit.
To illustrate the problem of scarcity, I often use an example
that students can easily relate to: budgeting their monthly allowance. Since majority of my students are not from Baguio,
they have to stretch the sustenance they receive from their parents not only to cover expenses for food and school requirements but rental costs as well. Once they draw up their budget
schedules they end up realizing that the first thing they need to
do is to prioritize. In the process they learn that what they
want is not always the same as what they need. This is true for
individual consumers and this is true for other economic actors
as well, regardless of size or scope. Business firms must decide

TI SIMILLA

continued next page

Essay
what commodities to
produce given the
limited resources that
they have, how much
of these to produce,
and the method of
production that they
will use. Even the
government has to
make decisions regarding the resources
it has at its disposal.
As a discipline,
Economics combines
approaches from the
natural sciences and
the social sciences. It
borrows techniques
and tools from mathBA Social Sciences, major in Economics,
ematics in its analysis
magna cum laude
of economic phenomena. More often
than not, this intimidates students. Time and again I have to
find ways to make students feel more comfortable with calculations, especially when I have to teach Economics 106 (Mathematical Economics) and Social Science 101 (Fundamental Statistics for the Social Sciences). Econ 106 covers equilibrium analysis, matrices, linear programming, and optimization problems,
among others. Basically, it reviews economic concepts from a
mathematical standpoint, employing tools from both algebra
and calculus. Soc Sci 101, on the other hand, deals with basic
concepts and techniques used in the organization, presentation,
analysis and interpretation of quantitative social data. It encompasses different tools that can be useful for the purposes of research, with emphasis given to the social sciences. The course is
very interesting because unlike the other subjects I handle, Statistics is offered not just to Economics majors but to other BASS
students as well. So I get useful inputs from my students majoring in Social Anthropology or History, with minors in Psychology, Philosophy or Political Science. I integrate these into
the whole learning process.
Mention statistics or calculus to the average student and s/he
freaks out. So my usual strategy is to give as many sample problems as possible, at least until everything gets less confusing for
the student. I give exercises when necessary, and sometimes I
ask my students to solve problems on the board and explain
their solution to their classmates afterwards. The key is to make
students understand that all the formulas and mathematical techniques that they have to contend with are just tools; they are
not ends in themselves. At the end of the day, they have to
interpret the values that they have solved for and apply these to
real world problems. This is especially important for Soc Sci
101, because most students have to use statistical tools in their
undergraduate theses later on.

10

Aside from mathematical courses, I have also handled conceptual subjects like Economics 101 (Macroeconomics) and Economics 121 (Monetary Economics). Econ 101 builds on the foundations laid in Econ 11, and is usually taken by students during
their second year. As a 4-unit course, it is more demanding both
for me and my students. With Macroeconomics, the class is introduced to national income accounting, consumption and investment decisions, income and employment determination, and
monetary, fiscal, and international policies. Econ 121, meanwhile,
is more specific, and focuses on the role of money in the
economy. It looks at specific financial institutions, and studies
financial markets along with the usual financial instruments being traded there. It also includes discussions on different policies
and strategies employed by monetary authorities to govern the
financial system.
Both courses do not only focus on theories. They also allow
students to apply the concepts to the analysis of everyday problems. These include business cycle fluctuations, especially recessions and depressions. I usually ask my classes in 101 and 121 to
examine the 20072008 Global Recession, the 1930s Great
Depression, and the
more recent economic and fiscal crisis in the European
Union. They do case
studies, and along the
way the students are
able to use what they
learned to analyze the
factors that can lead
to such events, their
impact, and how
they could be prevented in the future.
Economics is the science of choice. And it teaches us that
every choice we make entails a trade-off. A trade-off is a cost. As
economists we refer to it as an opportunity cost. If you choose
to produce one commodity, then you forego the opportunity
of producing another. If you choose to spend your income on
one good, then you lose the chance of spending it on another
item. If you want A, then you have to give up B, C or D. Every
decision you make, economic or not, entails a sacrifice on your
part. I knew this when I decided to teach. I knew that I was
giving up the chance to be somebody else or to earn a higher
income. But I also knew I could live with those opportunity
costs. I was looking for fulfilment, after all. And what could be
more gratifying than to meet your students on the street and
hear them call you Sir, and you realize that in a way you have
been part of their lives. Yes, I like being a teacher. I love being
Sir. 

TI SIMILLA

Students have to
interpret the values
that they have solved
for and apply these to
real world problems

March 2014



NUS, from page 8

Taboan, from page 5

tally-challenged people, to environmental dealings like garbage


sorting, animal habitat cleaning and advocacy promotion for
health awareness such as AED hunting (Automated External
Defibrillator, used to automatically diagnose life threatening
cardiac arrests). True enough, it was a fulfilling experience to
give back to the Singapore community. Going the extra mile to
extend a hand no matter how tiring it was, was all worth the
effort.
Leadership enrichment is at the core of the TF- NUS-LEaRN
Programme. The task handed onto me was to utilize the various experiences I had both as a scholar and volunteer so that I
could contribute significantly as a leader in my home country.
Currently, I am a member of OSCAR (Outstanding Students
of the Cordillera Administrative Region) and last February 26
we conducted Youth Hours, the annual gathering of academic
achievers, student leaders and socially responsible youth of the
Cordillera Region. I learned in one of the workshops I had as a
TF--NUS-LEaRN scholar that a leader is not easily swayed by
the glamor of the title alone, but is responsible about work,
motivating other people regardless of social class or stature to
strive well in the finest of their potentials.
As I was giving my talk to the participants of Youth Hours, I
remembered this ethos well, shared it to them and finally
clinched my speech with the point that that a leader is one who
does not get tired of inspiring other people to learn, to lead and
to serve for life. Now as a UP educator, I am trying my best to
encourage my students in understanding not only academics but
life lessons as well, and that each one of them has the capability
of becoming a leader because essentially, that is what a true
Iskolar ng Bayan means.
My NUS student exchange experience has truly been a rewarding journey for me, thanks to UP, to the professors who
believed in me, who managed to write a brilliant commendation letter that captivated the screening committee and most
importantly, who molded me as a student leader. I shall continue to share my story and hopefully inspire more of the young
minds that shape the nation.

Alejo, SJ who shared how


poetry and music have
eased pains and tensions in
war-riddled Zamboanga.
A peaceful discourse is actually achieved in the creative terms of pen and paper, with both sides given
a chance to explain and express themselves. Present in the audience were wordsmiths from the Tacloban area who shared some
songs.
The Cordillera contingent
Being at Taboan means that you are (as the Festival committee would write) part of the most prolific and prodigious of the
countrys poets, fiction writers, playwrights, essayists and mixed
media artists. Let me take this time again not only to carry my
own bangko but my entire sala-set as well. I was humbled to be
part of an elite group consisting of national artists, multi-literary
award winners, eccentrics, and brilliant wordsmiths. Along with
delegates representing Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao, the highland delegates came in full force. Led by Palanca award-winners
Butch and Priscilla Macansantos, the Cordillera contingent included Ifugao Iloko writer Johnny Buhay; Ibaloy writer Melvin
Magsanoc; poet, veteran literature teacher, and Baguio girl Christine Flores, and myself.
The festival included a tour of Subic and San Fernando,
Pampanga, pizza and beer night in Olongapo, sponsored by the
Rotary Club of Olongapo, and the awarding of the 2014 NCCA
writers prize. 2014 Taboan ended with an overnight stay and
dinner program (with talent show) at the Widus hotel in Clark
Freeport Zone. 

March 2014

Image: Clever Girl by Tessa Hadley


www.theguardian.com

TI SIMILLA

11

Report

A Bangkok confab on language


UP Baguio faculty read papers on food and culture,
and communication
By ROSARIO FLORENDO

and Outer Circle language use

Two of us from the Department of Lan- ippine ethnolinguistic groups, food as language
guage, Literature and the Arts of the College likewise opens the arena of communication to
of Arts and Communication capped the year the table, the street and even cyberspace, inwith paper presentations at the 5th Interna- creasing the over-all linguistic capital and functional Conference on Language and Commu- tional domains of man.
nication (ICLC) held in Bangkok from DecemI also presented a paper, Exploring
ber 12-14, 2013. This years theme was on In- Baguios Linguistic Landscape: A Preliminary
novative Inquiries and Emerging Paradigms in Study of Signage in Philippine English, under
Language, Media and Communication. The the Sociolinguistics panel. The paper studies
conference was hosted by the Graduate
School of Language and Communication of the National Institute of Development Administration, Bangkok, Thailand.
Dr. Anna Christie Torres, Dean of
the College of Arts and Communication,
read a paper titled, Food for Thought:
Power, Identity, and Nourishment of
a National Language under the panel
on Power, Discourse and Politics. Her
study highlights the integral role of food
and language to our identity. Focused
on exploring the problem of how food Dean Anna Christie Torres (right) and Rosario Florendo
reveals the changing identities and nourishes the national language, the paper touches signage in Baguio City using Philippine Enon staples of the Filipino table like rice (and glish and presents innovations and peculiar
our numerous ways of cooking rice and terms features of English used for this purpose. I inreferring to rice in different stages), soup (like vestigated what signage reveals about the imbulalo and sinigang) and coffee and how these plicit language policy and preference in Baguio
reflect popular culture, language and identity City and what these reveal about language use,
of the Filipino. Dr. Torres concluded, While especially English. Based on examples of
foregoing certain commonalities among Phil- signage gathered for the study, it appears that

despite the number of local languages used in


the relatively small space of Baguio, English
remains the preferred language for composing
signage in business districts, even in the public
market. However, it is interesting to note that
the kind of English used exhibits a liberal use
of innovative features representative of a local
variety of the language.
Though the conference was held amidst
alarming news on political and civil
unrest in Bangkok, it was well-attended and only a handful of foreign
paper presenters did not show up.
The number of Filipino delegates to
the conference was impressive, with a
total of 16 paper presenters.
A particularly interesting accomplishment during the event was the
establishment of important links with
Dr. Serafin Coronel-Molina of Indiana University who delivered the first
days keynote address, Rethinking
Language Policy and Planning in the
21st Century, and the conferences
Co-Chair, Dr. Hugo Lee Yu-Hsiu of NIDA.
Dr. Molinas interest in language preservation
and revitalization is in line with the CACs
research and extension thrusts and he has graciously consented to open cooperation among
CAC, UP Baguio and Indiana University in
any project along these lines. 
ISSN 0119-6634

Office of Public Affairs


UP BAGUIO
2600 BAGUIO CITY, PHILIPPINES

Published by the University of the Philippines Baguio


through the Office of Public Affairs
E-mail: opa@upb.edu.ph
UP Baguio website: www.upb.edu.ph

Editing and Layout: Victoria Costina


Associate Editor: Jimmy Fong
Contributors: Faculty

of College of Arts and Communication,


College of Science and College of Social Sciences
Logistics: Malorie Joy Mones

ENTERED AS SECOND CLASS MAIL AT THE Baguio City Central Post


Office, Upper Session Road, Baguio City WITH PERMIT NO. CAR-08.

The views and opinions expressed in TI SIMILLA do not necessarily reflect the collective stand of the academic staff or the
official position of UP Baguio.