Commencement Address of Sen. Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr.
8th Commencement Exercises of
Capiz State University
28 March 2012, Roxas City
To the university president, Dr. Magallanes, school administrators and support staff, faculty members, proud parents, and graduates of 2012, magandang araw po.
Before I begin, I would like to ask everyone to shake each other’s hands and greet each other congratulations.
Indeed, you are all worth the handshakes and “congratulations”. The officials, staff, and faculty of this institution deserve proper commendation for their hard work and excellence in helping the students achieve a quality education.
Congratulations also to the parents, for your unfaltering support to these students. Without your love and care, they would not be here.
To the graduates, my warmest felicitations as you gather here today to reap more than all the combined product of exhaustion, hunger, and sleepless nights that go with completing your thesis papers and other university requirement.
My appreciation also goes to Capiz State University for being steadfast in its mission of nurturing young minds and talents, enhancing skills and values, and engaging in quality research that is geared towards attainment of academic excellence, sustainable development, and global competitiveness.
On State Universities
At present, the country has only six percent state universities and colleges as compared to 88% private higher education institutions. This means that there are just handful of schools that offer cheap yet quality education for poor Filipinos yearning to get their degrees, and CapSU is one of these.
State universities are great help in our country as they educate those who are willing to study but could not afford the tuition fees in private colleges and universities. If given proper support by the government, the quality of education that they offer can also be at par with private schools. Hence, it is my belief that our government should invest in state universities like CapSU and push for increase in their budgetary allocation to allow them to effect development and afford ambitious projects that will lead to further knowledge of our youth.
The government should give these public schools higher budget that will not merely allow them to survive but will allow them to dramatically improve the standard of education that we now have. How can you join the upper strata of world-class universities when you will not be given more than sufficient budget? Certainly, you do not deserve budget cuts.
However, budget increase is not the only solution. It will not alone solve the illness of education in this country. Another solution that should accompany the move for budgetary increase is to direct our existing budget to a select number of SUCs that are proven to produce exceptional graduates and to conduct innovative researches. This is exactly what the Indian government did with Indian Institute of Technology. India directed its resources into creating a few but top-grade universities instead of several others that are just created out of excessive vanity of politicians.
Another solution in solving the sickness in the Philippine educational system is to update course offerings to meet the demands of both public and private enterprises. We need to invest in courses that have to do with mining, aeronautics, and software engineering, as these are the fields that are hard to fill with suitable people.
This country needs more professionals in the field of science and technology, like doctors, scientists and researchers, engineers, accountants. It is quite sad that most of our graduates in these fields go to foreign shores for employment.
Appeal to Serve the Country
Nakakalungkot po na ibang bansa ang nakikinabang sa mga talento at talino na ating nilinang. Kailangan kayo ng bansang ito na uhaw sa inyong serbisyo at pagkalinga. Nawa’y pagkatapos ng okasiyong ito ay piliin n’yong mamalagi sa Pilipinas at paglingkuran ang ating mga kababayan.
Please do not leave this country if you can. But if you really have no choice but to leave them, may you not forget to give back even in your simplest way, like sponsoring a poor yet deserving student to study in CapSU or in any other school.
Make some ways to serve your people after you graduate. We are presently living in a technologically advanced world where we are connected in so many ways that we could not have imagined several years ago. We are so advanced that we can let all our friends know what we are doing at a certain moment by just Tweeting, or see our relatives abroad on a daily basis through Skype. We can easily post our replies and accept invitations in many social networking sites. We accept invitations by random people, and some of them are not even acquaintances. But there is one invitation that many find difficult to accept, and that is the call to public service.
As you graduate, may you heed the call of public service when it invites you. May you have the courage to accept the invitation to serve the nation, and may today be the beginning of a new journey and a life lived with purpose.
Final Advice: Have Focus
Alam kong marami sa inyo ang natatakot na sumuong sa tunay na agos ng buhay. Nagdududa kayo kung kayo ba ay magtatagumpay. Huwag kayong magpadala sa mga duda at takot. Bagkus ay maging matapang at handa kayo sa pagharap sa mga pagsubok sa labas ng apat na sulok ng inyong silid-aralan.
If you have focus, you will succeed. Focus on what you really want to achieve to reach success. Develop in you the ability to see the bigger picture. Have the courage to dig in and strive even harder.
When I was younger, I know in my heart that I will become a public servant so I worked hard and focused to become a better one. You, too, should have focus and faith. Believe in yourselves so that others will also believe in you. Have confidence in what you do and you will later on realize that there will be no limits on what you can accomplish.
Ang tanging hadlang sa mga bagay na pwede ninyong makamtan ay ang mga hadlang na kayo mismo ang nagtalaga sa inyong sarili—mga limitasyon na nasa isip lamang. Huwag kayong magpadala sa ganoong klaseng hadlang bagkus ay palagi kayong maghangad at mangarap ng tagumpay. At samahan niyo rin ng palagiang pagdarasal.
My dear graduates, aim high, soar even higher, and pray harder. Don't settle for what you know you can accomplish, but rather challenge yourself to pursue the impossible. Wala pong imposible sa taong may pokus at pagsisikap.
Yun lamang po at maraming salamat. Mabuhay kayong lahat!