ang bisikleta

Commencement address of Jose V. Tecson, III, MD at the commencement exercises of the DMMC – Institute of Health Sciences

Tunay po na isang malaking karangalan ang makapiling kayo at mapili na maging inyong tagapagsalita sa natatanging hapon na ito. Para po sa akin, ito ay isang pagbabalik. Ako rin po ay naging bahagi ng DMMC IHS bilang isang guro anim na taon na ang nakakaraan.

My heartfelt congratulations to our dear graduates on your graduation! Most especially to your parents and loved ones for their continued support. Maari po ba na magsitayo ang ating mga magulang at bigyan ng isang masigabong palakpakan. Thank you itay, inay, amang, inang, daddy, mommy. And to your mentors for their time and knowledge. Maari po ba na magsitayo ang ating mga guro at bigyan ng isang masigabong palakpakan. Thank you ma’am and sir.

Bagamat tinatawag natin ang okasyon na ito na isang pagtatapos, ito rin po ay isang panimula – Isang bagong kabanata sa buhay ng ating magsisipagtapos. Maari na ang iba sa inyo ay magpapatuloy pa ng pag-aaral, ang iba ay maghahanap na ng trabaho, ang iba ay kukuha pa ng licensure examinations, ang iba ay magpapahinga muna.

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photo courtesy of ecoki.com

Ang pagdagdag ng kaalaman at karanasan ay hindi natatapos sa pagtangap ng isang diploma. Bagkus ito ay isang habangbuhay na gawain. Per Vitam Totam Discere – Lifelong Learning. Inaasahan natin na ang kaalaman at karanasan na inyong nakuha sa pamamalagi ninyo sa DMMC IHS ay  inyong magiging sandigan sa inyong pakikipagsapalaran sa anumang hamon na inyong tatahakin.

As I see it Life is always a great journey, with many successes and disappointments – there is no destination.

After all these years, I’d come to realize that optimism, and having a dream and being passionate about what you do, is far more significant than the frustrations and obstacles that appear in the way of it. And that misfortune can, in fact, become the engine of unimagined opportunities.

Nung ako’y nag-aaral mag-bisikleta, maka-ilang ulit na akong nabubuwal at nagkakaroon ng mga galos. Ang sabi ng aking pinsan na siyang nagtuturo sa akin –  “Kasama yan. Kung gusto mong matuto, kailangan mong tangapin na masasaktan ka. Kung ayaw mong magka-galos, tigil na tayo.” Dahil sa kagustuhan ko na matutong mag-bisikleta, ininda ko ang lahat ng sakit at galos.

Nais ko rin bigyang pansin ang mensahe ng isang patalastastas ng isang sabong panlaba – “Pipigilan ba natin na ma-mantsahan ang ating mga anak kung alam natin na ito ay makakabuti sa kanila?”

Bagamat iba ang conteksto ng dalawang nabanggit na pangyayari, iisa lang ang mensahe. Sa ating paglalakbay sa buhay, tayo ay haharap ng iba’t ibang klase ng hamon.

Ang totong buhay ay hindi madali – tayo ay madudumihan, magkaka-galos, madadapa. Ang mahalaga ay tayo ay muling babangon at magpapatuloy.

Makailang beses na din akong nadumihan, nagkagalos at nadapa.

Minsan lang po ako nakakuha ng 4.0 nung ako’y estudyante. Minsan din lang ako nag-removals. At binagsak ko pa. Eto po ay nun ako ay graduating sa UP Diliman. Dahil dito, nawala ang aking pagkakataon ng magtapos na isang cum laude – ang akin pong naging GPA ay 1.76. At ang mas masakit – kahit ako ay natanggap na sa UP College of Medicine, hindi ako nakapag-patuloy dahil ako ay magiging summer graduate. Habang hinihintay ko po ang susunod na application sa UP College of Medicine, nag-apply po ako na guro dun sa aming kolehiyo at kahit alam ng pamunuan na ako’y di magtatagal, ako po ay tinangap at sa  loob ng isang taon ako ay naging guro. Mabuti naman po at noon ako’y nag-apply muli, ako ay muling natanggap.

Nang matapos po ako ng medicine, nag-apply ako ng residency sa ophthalmology sa UP-PGH. Hindi po ako natanggap. Naulit na naman po. Isa na namang malaking pagsubok ang aking hinaharap. Habang hinihintay ko po ang susunod na application, ako po ay nag-enroll sa isang masteral course at nagging guro ulit sa isang College of Medicine. Sa ikalawang pagkakataon ng aking application, ako po ay natanggap sa residency at nag-graduate bilang Chief Resident.

Ako po ay naniniwala na sa bawat pinto na sasara, may bintana naman na bubukas. Determinasyon na magtagumapay, tigas ng dibdib, tiwala sa sarili at higit sa lahat ang patnubay ng Maykapal – yan po ang aking naging sandata sa aking mga naging pagsubok. Ang sabi nga po ni Confucius – “Our greatest glory is not in never failing, but in rising everytime we fall.”

In both instances, I always tell my mother that I need to rest and gather my strength in preparation for the tough task ahead. It was an excuse at that time. But looking back, I did become stronger. I became more mature because of those humbling experiences. For me, these challenges helped build my character. May these experiences serve as one of your inspirations if and when faced with a challenging situation.

My dear graduates, we are facing a changing and changed world. But I still say that this is your journey, and dare to dream.

Tom Friedman tells us that the world has become “flat, hot and crowded”… evolving to Twitter, Face Book, Google, iPhone, Youtube – all of which have changed the landscape.

And I still say—find your place, your opportunity–this is your journey.

And even as you keep traveling the road ahead, you must always remember where you came from. Each of us carries the dust and dreams of the places that helped shape us, and all of us can count our blessings that our path has taken us.

Do not be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Do not let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.

Here is some advice that you might find useful as you leave this institution and embark on your own journey:

Find your dream. In the days and weeks ahead spend this time to develop the process of what and who you are… Make it your priority to identify and focus on your strengths fine tuning your confidence. …then proceed with anticipation not entitlement or expectation.

Create rich experiences. Make it a priority over experiences that you think can make your rich. Live with humility, volunteerism and passion for the unfortunate. It always comes back.

Find the right time. Locate and surround yourself with potential opportunities, wherever you are. Anticipate the window through prepared pathways then execute your plan.

Hard work works! As a rule, I have learned that working really hard is what really successful people do!

For you and for me, there is always someone who can provide wisdom, experience, influence, and comfort when you don’t know the answer.

Never lose the passion to learn.  Always be open to new concepts and technologies.

Be optimistic at all times. I have always led and followed with optimism. It will help you and others find your way even when the path is not in front of you! Bad experiences, can make good judgments. And sometimes a door you never imagined will open.

Character Counts. Everything you say and do matters to someone sometime. Do the right thing 100 % of the time. In the words of Lincoln – ”Your reputation, word and honor is the most important possession you own”

Relationships are the Jewels of Life. Develop, build and protect relationships. Success is relationships in evolution over time.

The ultimate relationships are your family and friends – celebrate them, cherish them and keep them. Never compromise integrity for anything at anytime.

Always live by the values of excellence, integrity, commitment and collaboration – these will help you realize your dreams. By espousing these values, I did not only achieve my dreams but made myself a better person. I hope you will too.

Before I end, I would like to acknowledged Mr. Michael Dell, Dr. Bert Mandelbaum and the late Steve Jobs. Some portions of this speech were taken from speeches they delivered.

My dear graduates, in the end, it is your journey. Your path to travel and your responsibilities along the way. You are free to choose, and you are free to succeed. It just takes hard work and a dream. But also remember that happiness is not about getting what you want, but about wanting what you’ve got.

I wish you all a great adventure on the road ahead.

Maraming salamat at Mabuhay po kayong lahat.

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