Thursday, October 08, 2009

Farewell, UPLB

Note: Reposted from my friendster blog, originally posted in Dec., 2005

This is really “it.” I’ve turned in my resignation yesterday. And this morning, I got a surprise call on my cell phone from the University Chancellor himself asking me about it. Well, he just happens to be the new Chancellor, I guess. Just several months back, prior to his appointment, I gave his name as a reference in my failed application at CIP (it’s not important that I spell that out). And he wrote a very nice recommendation letter for me. He even gave me a copy when he saw me one time at his office. I was flattered. And although I did not get the post I applied for, it was a consolation that people like him saw me in the way that he did. Sad that I’ll be leaving the university I’ve been with the last eight and a half years now that he’s just assumed office. Well, it’s already sad that I’m leaving to start with, but to leave at this particular time makes it a tad more saddening.

I am going around the campus now to have my clearance sheet signed by various offices. My resignation will take effect 31 December. Not that I’m too eager to be out of this place; I just want all things prepared ahead of time to avoid any last-minute fuss.

University of the Philippines Los BaƱos (UPLB). My home. I first saw light here in 1975. I was brought to Manila when I was four years old, came back in 1990, went away again for a year. Then, started my college here in 1992. Got my first job here. Had a chance to leave and work in Manila but preferred to come back. Fell in love and eventually got married here. Had our wedding at the National Arts Centre in Mt. Makiling. Gave birth to my son at the Los Banos Doctors Hospital. Essentially then, I have spent half of my life here.

Now, a new job is going to take me to Manila once more. For the meantime, we will keep our apartment here. Whereas, now I could jump out of bed as late as 7:30 in the morning and still be in office at 8:15, come January I’d have to wake up no later than 5:00 a.m. and be out of the house at 5:30 a.m. I might probably get home at 8 p.m. if I leave Manila at 5:30 p.m. These are among a number of trade-offs I’d have to live with for an entry-level local staff position in a multi-lateral organization in Ortigas.

I’m all excited. Yes, the pay, plus the benefits, is one big factor for my leaving UPLB for another organization. Change in work environment is another. The opportunity for career advancement may be another, although I prefer to take things one at a time for now.

UPLB remains in my heart as an ideal place to settle in. Opportunities are just too limited for the many professionals who have chosen to reside here. Professional competition is tough. In fact, a Ph.D. degree in this scientific community has already become ordinary. A faculty cannot be given tenure unless he’s obtained his doctorate degree. I guess, my place is just not here, profession-wise, mainly because I am not a faculty member. I’m no research scientist either. And getting a Ph.D. is the last thing on my mind right now after completing my master’s just last April.

So to UPLB, many thanks… For the quality education and professional training. For the nice and many intellectually challenging people. For the gifts of nature that have calmed my soul on many occasions. For the feeling of safety I could not feel anywhere else. For that sense of familiarity with everything here. My heart is yours. My life has been shaped by momentous events that you have been witness to. You shall be my resting place when my time comes… I’ll be back to stay forever…

Graduating with a master's degree in development communication from UPLB.

With fellow development communication graduates.

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