Thursday, February 3, 2011

Coffee commercials and careers

I was busy reviewing for a major exam the next day when this commercial was aired:

The sun rises and clouds drift in a speeded time lapse. A woman drinks her morning coffee, sets it down, holds some pieces of paper while saying, “Nasusulat na ni Junior ang kanyang pangalan. Si Caloy naman, marunong nang magbilang (Junior can now write his name while Caloy already knows how to count.).

The scene then changes to a school setting. Children ran out from the classroom and helped the woman to her way inside. “Sila ang aking mga anak. Ang dahilan kung bakit ganado akong bumabangon araw-araw. (They are my children. They keep me motivated to wake up each morning.)”

Scene shifts to a classroom setting, the woman teaching a number of grade school pupils. “Milyun-milyon kaming bumabangon para sa kabataan. (There’s a million of us who wake up for the youth.)”

Then the scene changed for the last time, the woman drinking from her coffee mug once more. “Ikaw, para kanino ka bumabangon? (Who do you wake up for?)”

The last line stayed in my mind, an achievement for a guy who has neurotic ADHD. I asked myself the question, “Para kanino nga ba ako bumabangon?”

Currently, I wake up for my father and mother. I wake up to study. I wake up to get that diploma. I wake up for my parents’ dreams. See, my mom stopped studying after she graduated in elementary. She actually blames that whenever we face financial problems. “If only I continued my studies,” she would say. The catch was they never had the money. That’s why she wants me to finish my studies so that I can help them and my future children.

I’m a BS Accountancy student. Why I took the course, blame my OFW aunt and mom. But also blame this statement, “When you become a CPA, you need not find jobs. Jobs will find you.” I sense that it’s true. I keep on hearing board exam passers from my school working for a company in Makati, for the SGV and other accounting firms, for Belo Medical Group, et cetera. Some of them even work as far as Texas, USA.

During break times at school, we would talk about our lives after passing the CPA board exam. Most of us were planning to work immediately for private companies and study law at the same time. And only a few wants to serve the academe. “Lower salary,” they would rationalize.

With six or seven CPAs, my school sure lacks accounting instructors. That is why Ma’am. Dy, my Acctg103 professor, keeps on persuading us to take the lesser taken path. Almost each day, she would talk about the benefits of becoming a teacher, its nobility and whatnots, pension included.

Teachers during my high school days were so fond of student reports, my classmates would whine while I put on my best smile. I was so excited for my chance to teach. I prepared handouts the moment my teacher gave me my assignment. I rehearsed in my room, tried to talk to walls and cabinets. When I was in fourth year high school, I remember myself writing BS Secondary Education as my first priority; BS Accountancy as my second choice. I find joy in teaching. There’s this feeling I couldn’t describe whenever I try to explain something to my classmates. I was born for this profession. But my mom disagreed. She wanted me to become a CPA, a CPA for a huge company in Makati to be exact.

Everytime Prof. Dy goes on with her teaching-is-the-noblest-profession speech; I can’t help but think whether I’ll disobey my mom. I want to become a teacher. I want to share my knowledge to the next generation as well as enhance theirs. I want to be a source of wisdom. And so I decided to work for the academe for 15 years (you have to work for the government that long to receive a pension when you get older). And then I’ll retire and try to find a job in the Philippines’ business capital. That way, I can shoot two birds with one stone. Ikaw, para kanino ka babangon? (Who will you wake up for?)


  1. Hi Christian!

    I'm currently re-reading The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People and I learned the power of introspection: only you can know your own preference and your mission in life. I respect your mom and your professor at that. But, first and foremost, respect your self. What are your values? With those values at hand, what do you want to do in life?

    Listen to yourself. :)

    And I also want to teach! But I can't do it full time so being a college lecturer is included in my Life Plan.

    God bless. :)

  2. Thanks for the advice kuya :D I appreciate it :D And you speak like Rancho from "3 Idiots" ;D