4 Cebu grads in LET top 10

2 NORMALITES, A VISAYANIAN, A JOSENIAN Rhea Mae Ongkit was do­ing laun­dry at home in Barangay Ilaya, Dalaguete town, south­ern Cebu yes­ter­day af­ter­noon when her younger sib­ling her­alded the news that she had topped the board exam for teach­ers.

The Freeman - - FRONT PAGE - John Ken­drick P. Ceciban USJ-R In­tern The Free­man (ver­i­fied) @TheFree­manNews • www.philstar.com

At first, she thought it could be fake news, but when she her­self saw the greet­ings that had flooded her so­cial me­dia ac­count, that's when she re­al­ized it was all for real.

“Mura gyud kog gibayaw sa lan­git. Nagkurog akong kamot while gabasa sa mga greet­ings sa Facebook (I was like lifted to the heav­ens. I was shak­ing while read­ing the greet­ings),” Ongkit, 21, told The FREE­MAN in a text mes­sage.

Ongkit, a grad­u­ate of the Uni­ver­sity of the Visayas-Dalaguete Cam­pus, placed sev­enth in the el­e­men­tary cat­e­gory of the Septem­ber 2018 Li­cen­sure Ex­ams for Teach­ers (LET) with a rat­ing of 88.20 per­cent.

Two other grad­u­ates from Cebu joined her in the top 10: Im­manuelle Anne Ocaya of Cebu Nor­mal Uni­ver­sity and Dianne Claire Cam­pos of Uni­ver­sity of San Jose-Reco­le­tos, who both landed ninth with 87.80 per­cent.

In the sec­ondary cat­e­gory, Anne Mica Lim, also of CNU, fin­ished eighth with 91.40 per­cent.

IN­SPIRED, HUM­BLED

The school where Ongkit fin­ished her de­gree in el­e­men­tary ed­u­ca­tion is lo­cated about 90 kilo­me­ters, a good three-hour drive, from Cebu City.

UV-Dalaguete is a fledg­ling in­sti­tu­tion that has pro­duced eight batches of grad­u­ates so far. But un­like most schools in the city, it does not have an en­trance exam for its ed­u­ca­tion pro­grams.

An­thony Teo, the school's of­fi­cer-in-charge, there­fore con­sid­ers Ongkit's achieve­ment as both in­spir­ing and hum­bling for the school.

“We are only a small cam­pus from the south but know­ing this achieve­ment of Rhea re­ally feels like an ac­knowl­edg­ment of the school's de­sire to be rec­og­nized. That small cam­puses like UV-Dalaguete can pro­duce a top­notcher diay. Maka-proud gyud sa among end. We are be­yond thank­ful for Rhea and her achieve­ment. It's his­tory for us,” said Teo.

Teo, who served as one of Ongkit's in­struc­tors, was among those who have seen the young lady's po­ten­tials.

“She has been con­sis­tently dili­gent and re­ally a hard work­ing one. She is al­ways one of the ex­celling stu­dents in her batch. I think she was vale­dic­to­rian man in high school and got the high­est av­er­age among all grad­u­ates from UV-Dalaguete last April,” he said.

Ongkit, a daugh­ter of a fork­lift op­er­a­tor and a house­wife, got a ticket to col­lege through a schol­ar­ship pro­gram of the mu­nic­i­pal gov­ern­ment of Dalaguete.

She is the el­dest in a brood of four, and all her younger sib­lings are also study­ing.

She knew she came from a small school but this was not in­grained in her mind and did not stop her from pur­su­ing the top.

“Kay ka­balo ko nga inig take og LET, patas tanan -- way datu, way po­bre. Ug dili mag-mat­ter if asa ka nga school gagikan. What mat­ters is ang imong will ug per­se­ver­ance,” she said.

STUDY HARD, PRAY HARDER

So de­ter­mined was Ongkit that she had to de­ac­ti­vate her so­cial me­dia ac­counts to fo­cus on her re­view, which she paid with bor­rowed money.

“Kay ac­tu­ally in­u­tang pa gyud to ni papa ang gibayad nako para en­roll sa re­view cen­ter. Ta­pos kanang al­lowance pa nako if moadto ko sa city kada se­m­ana para re­view kay para kon­sumo unta namo weekly. Mami­nu­san among bud­get pero, okay ra. La­ban gi­hapon,” she shared.

In the end, Ongkit left a mes­sage to all fu­ture tak­ers: “Kung nag-strug­gle fi­nan­cially, da­pat pan­gi­taan gyud og paagi kay ang kwarta makit-an ra man. Ang op­por­tu­nity kausa ra.

“Unya usa ra gyud akong ad­vice sa tanang mo-take: study hard, pray harder. Kay wa tay mabuhat og walay Gi­noo sa atong kinabuhi. Bisan un­saon pag study og walay pag-ampo, wa gyuy mahimo. Bless­ing gi­hapon ni God ang pinakaim­por­tante sa tanan.”

Ac­cord­ing to the Pro­fes­sional Reg­u­la­tion Com­mis­sion, 18,409 out of 90,750 ex­am­i­nees (20.29 per­cent) passed the exam for el­e­men­tary teach­ers while 60,803 of 126,582 ex­am­i­nees (48.03 per­cent) passed the sec­ondary level.

Both gar­ner­ing a score of 89.80 per­cent, Rhea Joy Gen­son of Uni­ver­sity of South­ern Philip­pines- Davao City and Mariel Sal­adaga of Uni­ver­sity of South­east­ern Philip­pines shared the top spot in the el­e­men­tary cat­e­gory.

On the other hand, Fran­cis Dave Ca­bant­ing, also of Uni­ver­sity of South­east­ern Philip­pines- Davao City, and Sa­muel John Par­reño of Uni­ver­sity of Min­danao- Di­gos Col­lege topped the sec­ondary di­vi­sion with 92.80 per­cent.

ONGKIT

CAM­POS

OCAYA

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