Wednesday, June 28, 2017

UP summa sets "Pagmamalasakit" as mantra for UP Diliman Class 2017

Summa cum laude graduate Arman Ali Ghodsinia delivering the message of UP Diliman Class 2017.

"Pagmamalasakit" was what Arman Ali Ghodsinia, the 'first Maranao to graduate summa cum laude from (the University of the Philippines),' asked his fellow Iskolars ng Bayan to give to the Filipino people when they step out of the academe into the city and the world. 

"Tayo'y mga kabataan na nagmamalasakit para sa bayan. Tayo’y mga kabataan na nagmamalasakit para sa mga kapwa natin – lalo na ang mga kapwa natin na nalugmok sa kahirapan o naiipit sa matinding kaguluhan.

"Dahil sa pagmamalasakit para sa kapwa at bayan, tayo’y mga kabataan na nagsisikap hindi lamang para sa pansariling interes kundi para sa interes ng nakakarami."

Ghodsinia, who earned a weighted grade average of 1.173 for his Bachelor of Science degree in Molecular Biology, represented the 4,610 members of UP Diliman Class 2017 in speaking before their families and the university community during the 106th Pangkalahatang Pagtatapos at the Diliman campus on 25th July 2017. 

Ghodsinia received his medal with his parents,

He said he was also speaking as 'an advocate of peace and unity.' He traced his maternal roots to Marawi, a hometown he described as 'belong(ing) to one of the top 5 poorest provinces in the country' where 'access to quality education and healthcare is still low.'

As he spoke Marawi has been under siege for more than a month with the military in offensive drive against the terrorist group led by the Maute brothers. 

"Today," he said, "marks another day of hardship and chaos faced by our Filipino brothers and sisters in Mindanao. ... we witness an ongoing crisis back home. Filipinos, both Muslims and Christians are forced to flee from their homes. Our Muslim brothers and sisters fast not in their homes but in evacuation centers [Note: It was the last day of the Ramadan]. This crisis is just another addition to the long historical narrative of injustice and inequity faced by many minority groups in Mindanao."

He presented himself as 'proof that members of minorities like us Maranaos can also do well; excel and contribute effectively to societal growth if given the same opportunities and rights. I am speaking to you as proof that anyone, regardless of religion, socioeconomic status, or ethnic ties, can excel if equal opportunities are available to all."

The six summa cum laude graduates from the UPD College of Science
 with Chancellor Michael Tan and UP President Danilo Concepcion. 

"Kahit tayo ay magkaka-iba, tayo ay magkaka-pareho pa rin."  He flashed back to molecular biology to describe the microcosm of our society: 

"I know that everyone is made of up the same building blocks of DNA – adenosine, cytosine, guanine, and thymine. Underneath all the external differences, we are all made the same molecules that aggregated to form a human body.

"If we want to build an inclusive society, we should first have a strong national identity wherein no one is left behind. And we need to start early. As much as subjects like science, math, and the languages are important, then so are subjects that build on greater social cohesion among Filipinos of different ethnic groups, regions and religions."

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