Diploma for real

PERSPECTIVE - Cherry Piquero Ballescas - The Freeman

A deep-seated cultural mind-setting is once we achieved something in school there are symbols that could vouch certain abilities. Acquiring a diploma means substantiation of one's ability, even the actuality proves otherwise. And then we can say that it is just a piece of paper after all.

But in the world where documents are needed to show that one has undergone the rigor, it is something that we shall keep with us. And if it becomes the only motivation, by hook or by crook, one would resort to fishy ways just to acquire a diploma. 

I have encountered cases of students in their despondency to accomplish certain requirements for graduation they would resort to dubious ways compromising the very integrity of their works. For instance, for those who at the end of their on-the-job trainings in certain institutions, submission of a portfolio, a major requirement, becomes an uphill battle. But because of time constraints, result of poor planning, they would resort to exploring deceitful way like fabricating documents.Such academic dishonesty does not after all fool the faculty members but rather the students themselves. And for an academic institution not to tolerate this act would apply the full force of the policy. One extent of a consequence is stripping the students the privilege from graduating.

Acquiring college diploma requires academic compliance, hard work, and determination. These are the values that we ought to instill in the minds and hearts for one to be truly worthy of such honor.  A diploma has practically no significance but if there is it is short lived. Upon entering the next phase of life - a job, a family, politics-the value of the diploma will fade quickly. This is so because once in the actual work, it is now the real worth that counts. Forget that piece of paper because the real world is now a different ball game.And then we start to realize that it is now on how we utilize our true talent and skills that drive us to be good or bad in the real work environment.

Diplomas are only symbols, but education lasts a lifetime. With all the knowledge, skills, and values we acquired, we have to be prepared for life-changing endeavors. As we journey through life, we keep working hard because this is just the beginning of many challenges as well as future successes. 

Authentic education brings us to the world of vast opportunities. And no doubt that for a struggling Filipino family, one or if made possible, all members of the family must be given opportunities to have education. A college diploma is one fulfilled dream. Every fulfilled dream is a big milestone for family's social and economic transformation. And if this is duplicated by multiple folds in a community, and the entire country, it becomes a sure-fire to an extensive positive change. The Philippines may be an impoverished country, but where education is concerned it cannot be found wanting.

More than ever, we need graduates who think as global citizens. They are persons who are being blind to color, ethnicity, culture, gender or religion. Being persons for others is being able to see everyone with the eyes of love. This means not living for oneself but for every person in this world.

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