Oh, the places you’ll go!

Last February 4, 2012, our very own Teacher Karen Ruth Lorenzana had the opportunity to share about her life after graduating from UP. With her permission, we are posting her speech:

Oh, the places you’ll go!
By Karen Ruth C. Lorenzana
A speech given on February 4, 2012
To graduating BS FLCD students of UP Diliman

When people mention college, UP, FLCD, studying, I always go back to my last sem in UP. For my last sem, I had FLCD 147, 188, 174, flcd 200, I had 2 PEs- to name a few of my subjects, all at the same semester. So I would be balancing practicum 2 with the feasibility study, out of campus FLE programs, then gathering data for my thesis. Oh not to mention I had 2 PEs, squeezed in my week. Those who are graduating this year will definitely understand this. Some people like to say, keep work (or back then, academics) and your personal life separate. Mixing it up is a no-no. But as an answer to the first question, I would like to say the opposite. What got me through that sem was not the meticulous separation of all the aspects of my life, but the successful meshing of it. First, I chose my closest friends in FLCD to be my feasib mates- we know each other’s strengths so we were quick to divide work, and our feasib over nights didn’t feel like a burden to us, it was an instant slumber party! So instead of ranting “oh no,acads today I have no time for friends”, we were able to do well in our work, and be in good company as well. I did the same for thesis- data gathering was spent with a friend, that while we were waiting for respondents, we would work on our laptops for other requirements, and having coffee together was a reward in itself. I would tell my mom and my siblings about what I’m doing, and my ever generous mom would even let me do some of our work in my house. Had I not let my friends and family into my acads, it wouldn’t have been possible for me to give time for all of these aspects in my life. For a break, my 2 PEs were my R n R. it was my alone time. I stop thinking of my acads, I concentrate on breathing techniques, I put myself into what I’m doing, and I was always rewarded with natural endorphins which got me through the week.

FLCD taught me to successfully mesh all the aspects in my life in a way that I am able to explore what I want to do, while keeping the most important close to my heart- my family and relationships, and my values.

That answers the first, as well as the 2nd question: our course is so unique to emphasize the core value of family. My edge as an FLCD grad was being taught one that is of most value- sticking to what I believe in, and refusing to compromise these values. Quoting Van Gogh: “Things that matter most must NEVER be at the mercy of things that matter least.”We would all be rushing to meet deadlines, running to meetings, working on 2, 3 or sometimes 4 jobs at a time, but at the end of the day, it comes down to why. Working on this project with UNESCO I am surrounded with people way older than me- and what I have noticed is that you can distinctly see who are those who work for the money, and who work because they love what they’re doing. *Personally, I get turned off with the former. And as a personal decision, I promised myself not to work with people who turn me off. Because really, it is hard to work with people whose values are different from yours.

Why do you do all these? Knowing what you value in life should be the reason why you do anything at all. You can tell other people “I can do good work, I am good in writing narratives, I have handled difficult parents”, but all these are the WHAT. What you can do. What I have learned is that in the end, people don’t hire you and keep on hiring you because of simply what you can do, because they can easily hire another person to do the same work you can, even better. But employers hire you because of WHY you do what you do. Because the WHY gives you the drive, it ignites your passion, it directs all your thoughts actions and movement, it makes you last a long time submerged with loads and loads of work, but happy nonetheless. And in every industry, this is what they look for- people who will work for something, til the very end, because of their belief in the cause.

To answer number 3, my tip is venture into a profession where your WHY is the same as theirs.Work for someone who believes in the same things you do.Work for a company not because of monetary rewards (because money can run out), but because you have the same vision. Surround yourself with mentors, older people, younger people, whose values in life are same as yours.

For the last question, my advice for those taking FLCD now:
Find your passion.
Define your WHY.

It won’t be an easy journey, there will be times where you’ll find yourself in crossroads. When this happens, the best advice I can give is be inspired. Not the waiting-for-something-good-to-happen kind of inspiration, the proactive kind. Search for it- in a good book, from a movie, a song, look for it in the children, in a mentor, from a family member. As illustrated by Dr. Seuss in “Oh the places you’ll go”,

You can get so confused
that you’ll start in to race
down long wiggled roads at a break-necking pace
and grind on for miles across weirdish wild space,
headed, I fear, toward a most useless place.
The Waiting Place…

…for people just waiting.
Waiting for a train to go
or a bus to come, or a plane to go
or the mail to come, or the rain to go
or the phone to ring, or the snow to snow
or waiting around for a Yes or a No
or waiting for their hair to grow.
Everyone is just waiting.

…Somehow you’ll escape
all that waiting and staying.
You’ll find the bright places
where Boom Bands are playing.

You’ll get mixed up, of course,
as you already know.
You’ll get mixed up
with many strange birds as you go.
So be sure when you step.
Step with care and great tact
and remember that Life’s
a Great Balancing Act.
Just never forget to be dexterous and deft.
And never mix up your right foot with your left.

And will you succeed?
Yes! You will, indeed!
(98 and 3/4 percent guaranteed.)


be your name Buxbaum or Bixby or Bray
or Mordecai Ali Van Allen O’Shea,
you’re off to Great Places!
Today is your day!

Your mountain is waiting.
So…get on your way!

Being a preschool teacher is the profession most FLCD graduates take, but that is not the only option.
If that’s not for you, don’t be hard on yourself. You can get stumped, as Dr Seuss would like to say. But really, just be on your way. J
Thank you, and have a wonderful day! Congratulations and good luck. J

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