UPLB SELES + Gawad Alcala = Blessings

Life is indeed wonderful, and after every rain comes a rainbow. I feel so blessed this month and I just know, God gives you the best things in the best times <3


Last September 8, I was lucky to be one of the essay writing contestant of UPLB Society of Electrical Engineering (SELES) together with some of my classmates. It is composed of quiz show, essay writing and poster making.

Look at Mount Makiling, so beautiful!

We only had little time to take pictures since it is such a busy day. But don’t fret guys, because we won and we’re able to bring home the Eternal Trophy!

First, this is Lea’s poster which won 2nd place

Ryan’s poster which won first place!

This one reminds us of of John Mark! Hehe

Taken while watching the quiz show. Vivien, Paul and G’anne were able to qualify for the semi-finals :)

I won 1st place in Essay! I wasn’t really expecting it since I was so groggy the whole day (the night before I took Neozep and Vitamin E which imposes a gentle sleep to anyone who takes it, see what I mean?) I am really thankful to the Lord for this. I won a medal and… 2,500 in cash! Yay!

Eternal Trophy <3

Al I can remember was I spent my prize for a new black shoes and book: John Green’s Paper Towns. The rest went to my family’s grocery and the like. So happy to be able to do something worthwhile out of my earnings. But more importantly, winning the contest made me feel that after all the hibernation for three years, I can still write.


I have to be honest, I joined Gawad Alcala for the cash prize. At that time in July when Father Ella (my teacher in Filipino) announce the 3rd year of the contest, I am in a sort of roller coaster status with my family. So, I joined the contest to help my mother. I thought after a few days, we’ll get to know who won, but the awarding happened just this September 13.

A few days before September 13, I received a text from one of the administrators of Gawad Alcala (which I think is the John Bello, though I’m not so sure). S/he asked me to prepare a “tugong pananalita” upon receiving the award. Father Ella told me that they only ask the first placer to prepare for that, but I didn’t believe him then since I’m afraid to get my hopes too high. Plus, I am so overwhelmed because I had to keep it from everybody. Seriously, I’m not very good in lying.

So, the awards day came, and I have a prepared speech, but in the end, I did not read it in front of the people. Instead, I talked like the usual, and that’s when I realized, I did not only compete in Gawad Alcala for the money. There was also a part of me that’s looking for a way to prove to myself that I’m not turning into a sucker in the field that I love. While I was standing onstage, all I can think of was I really love writing and though I can never be the best in the world, I want to be the best for myself :)

The winning piece:


(About the story)

Si Bobet ay isang estudyante sa ikaapat na taon ng hayskul. Nang dahil sa bolpen, binansagan siyang “Bulaan” noong nasa ikaapat na baitang pa lamang siya. At simula noon, hindi na nawala ang katagang iyong kakabit na ng pangalan niya. Nawalan na din siya ng ganang magibg tapat sa bawat sinasabi niya kaya naman naisip niyang palagi na lang magsinungaling dahil wala namang naniniwala sa kaniya—bukod sa dalawa niyang kaibigan na sina Keret at Loki.                                                                                  

Sa isang ‘di inaasahang pagkakataon, makikilala nila si Doktor Melvil Platypus. Isa siyang siyentipiko na sa loob lamang ng limang minuto ay nakapagpabago ng buhay nila, lalo na ng buhay ni Bobet. Nang dahil sa bolpen, natutunan niya na ang buhay pala ay isang magulong sirko, at para pagkatiwalaan ka ng tao, kailangan mong maipakitang tapat sa bawat sinasabi mo.

My main inspiration for this story was the Harry-Ron-Hermione tandem. They’re sincerely my favorite trio. As for the ballpen, it’s my weapon as a young writer and as I’ve said in my “speech” at that moment, it symbolizes “change” in life.

I’m so happy about the Gawad Alcala. I used to be an honor student in elementary, but now, I’m having a hard time getting back to my usual study habits. Nevetheless, Gawad Alcala helped me to make my parents (and those who believe in me) proud.

God really moves in mysterious ways <3



P. S.

If you wanna read my story, download the Word copy of it: Ang Lihim Sa Likod ng Bolpen ni Bobet by Joyce Manrique :D


About Jashrawr

Jolog, adorkable, defying gravity ♥
This entry was posted in Jash Diaries, School, Special. Bookmark the permalink.

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