Every day is but a process
Where everyone’s being put to a test,
Tests by life struggles and stress
Conquering all brought but success.
Days turned into weeks,
Weeks turned into months,
And months turned into years…
Years we walked through
Together, hand in hand
Soon reached our goals and dreams.
To our commencement speaker, distinguished guests of honor, school administrators and program heads, our beloved principal and assistant principal, brilliant teachers, ever-supportive parents, my fellow graduates, ladies and gentlemen, good morning!
The last two years has never been easy. The implementation of K-12 program brought us into uncertainty and doubt as we walked through the crossroads with almost a blind eye and went to war with incomplete battle gears. But, who would have thought we would come to this point, celebrating a challenge accepted and a challenge won?
With pride and honor, I stand here today as a representative of this pioneering batch of STI graduates from Accountancy, Business, and Management program. I may not be the smartest, but always driven and confident. Seldom that I decline opportunities that knock on my door, perhaps the reason that brought me here onto the pedestal of academic excellence and other remarkable achievements.
I stand here today bearing the same emotional luggage of joy and excitement, but with a little sadness and longing. We are excited for what awaits us hereafter, but a little sad and longing for we are about to bid our goodbyes, and soon part ways. In a great assurance however, we will forever cherish the memories of ups and downs, of laughs and cries, and of hugs and taps on our shoulders. Hence, it fits the occasion that I share some of these vivid memories that keep on rushing back to me.
Admit it, most of us failed to reflect well on our chosen program long before filling out admission forms or attending our first major courses. What made us decide then? What made us choose ABM? When asked, still now, many cannot give concrete answers. Admit it.
Back in the days when we were not yet fully oriented, we would always have a common misconception that ABM is all about our no-no Mathematics, hence the term Accountancy. Whenever asked about our program, we would receive stereotypical remarks, ABM ka dba? Edi magaling ka sa Math?, Accounting ka eh. Kayang-kaya mong magsolve nang mabilisan. Yes, these have made us all remember how we struggled doing the balance sheets, how we failed basic arithmetic, or how we made a great mess out of those extensive yellow sheets. Soon we fully embraced the program however, we started realizing it’s more than math. It is rather more about developing critical thinking, deeper understanding of accounting and business operations, and about our tremendous determination and patience.
My fellow graduates, surely you can relate well with the starter pack of every STI senior high student – handouts (sometimes, softcopies on our phones would do), eLMS access, membership in our iLS groups, and particularly for us, ABM students, an extra disk space in our heads for saving and retrieving those overwhelming terms related to accounting, business, and others. Sometimes, we would get mental short circuits or reach our disk capacity. Minsan naisasagot natin yung dapat sa isang subject sa isa. Ang dami kasing terms. Hindi mon a malamn kung saan isisiksik sa utang mong punung-puno na.
Who cannot relate with our payers, calculators, cups of coffee, and tibay at lakas ng loob? Who cannot relate with those sleepless nights finishing all academic workloads, beating deadlines, and creating financial statements that all, once or many times, made us frustrated and cry? Who cannot relate then with those distressing moments gawking in front of monitors, and answering eLMS activities while preparing for the next day’s defenses and presentations? Relate much? Congratulations then!
As we reflect on the essence of these struggles and challenges, let me share the continuation of the poem I composed for all of us:
Nothing will be a hindrance to one dreamer.
No unclear and locked path will stop the seeker.
A determined mind, and a courageous heart
Keeps going beyond the limits of the line.
There will be no stop over nor surrender
For the dreamer and seeker sees no finish line.
Today sets another milestone for all of us. Today is not yet the end but just a beginning of another journey. It’s not just a celebration among those who have been given special recognitions and awards for what matters is not what we have just attained but what we have sacrificed and what have kept us moving forward.
As we reap the fruits of our hard work, perseverance, and pursuit of excellence, let us not forget the people who have stood by our side throughout our journey.
To our Lord, for He allows us to experience and reach this point of our lives, who gives us this wonderful gift despite our flaws and sins and who guided us along the way here and never leaves us in our life’s struggles. Thank you, oh Lord!
To STI, thank you for giving me an opportunity to study as a scholar and for its offering of superior learning systems.
To all our teachers and club mentors, especially Sir Crayv, Sir Marc, and Sir Birth, who have dedicated so much of their time, patience, and expertise, and who have served as our second parents, elder brothers and sisters, and even our best friends and confidants. Thank you! To my advisers, Momshie Sweet, Nanay Jean, and Mama Chan, our heartfelt gratitude for you did not let us go and fight our battle alone.
To our parents, who have sacrificed a lot, the best parents who love and support us no matter what, we know that our ‘thank you’ is never enough, but still thank you! I know all of you are very proud of us. We have given you headaches and problems along the way, but please also think that we’re always trying our best to make you proud and fulfil your dreams for us. Mommy and Daddy, this is all for you. Please do know that I always prioritize my studies and your goals are also my goals. I love you both!
Lastly, to my friends, my Lawette, and classmates from ABM 101- 401, we’ve shared a lot of beautiful memories together. We have witnessed each other’s ups and downs, shared our passion and dreams, and fought battles with each other’s back. Thank you for the two years you have shared with me, especially the laughter and tears. I may not be the best person you have ever encountered and met but I hope, somehow, I have touched your hearts and lives, and hence, left a mark.
My fellow graduates, as we make our time, efforts, and dedication as our capital in our studies, this day will be but the interest of our investments. Let’s now all credit all our uncertainties and stress in our life, and we can now breathe because finally we can claim and debit the best asset that will serve as our stepping stone in meeting new accounts in the future. Like what Benjamin Franklin once said, “An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest.”
Everyone, I’m Krisha Ciasico, thank you, congratulations, good luck, and God bless us all on our future endeavors!
This is the manuscript of the short valedictory address delivered by Krisha R. Ciasico during her senior high school graduation in April 2018.