so-so student: a student who is neither apathetic nor sympathetic
IN THE PREVIOUS ELECTION, ONE PARTY OVERPOWERED ANOTHER FOR OBVIOUS REASONS. BACK THEN, CAUSE WON AGAINST THEIR RIVAL HANDS DOWN, FOR NOT ONLY DID THEY HAVE THE CATCHIEST CAMPAIGN SLOGAN (#LABAN) AND THE HIGHEST NUMBER OF SUPPORTERS (BOTH ON FACEBOOK AND IN PERSON); THEY ALSO HAD ALLISON LADERO AND MARC MANABAN AS THEIR STANDARD BEARERS. LADERO WAS KNOWN FOR HIS HIGH ACADEMIC STANDING AND ACTIVE INVOLVEMENT IN CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES, WHILE MANABAN WAS A GUY WITH INSANELY HIGH INTELLIGENCE AND GOOD LEADERSHIP SKILLS. IN SHORT, THEY WERE THE PERFECT DUO IN A HIGHLY PATRIARCHAL SOCIETY LIKE OURS.
Fast forward and we reach the month of July, wherein news of a SUFA-staged strike that could happen anytime plagued the students. It was at this moment when I first noticed the existence of a student government. In spite of myself, I can clearly recall how the SUSG displayed their gallantry in fighting alongside the professors of SU in opposition to the supposed “inhumane” acts of the administration.
Their stand was firm, and in the end, they managed to earn the support of almost all of the students. They successfully hosted a student-based support system for the strike that caught the local media’s attention, even. This tale would have lingered on as a heart-warming one, until it was discovered that some students who participated in the strike had unwittingly been dragged into an illegal and unpermitted activity, due to them being minors. Despite this error, I could feel that SG only wanted to voice out their concerns in a way that could benefit both SUFA and the student body.
After the strike, SG continued with their activities and such. In this particular field, SG did a good job, especially during the Hibalag Festival. Every once in a while, I would see posters and infographics posted onbulletin boards and their Facebook page about their numerous activities like cleanup drives, call for blood donations, symposiums and the like. But despite all this, I remain most perturbed by the fact that SG did not lend much of an ear to the church. Most of their events were focused mainly on the community and the court, somewhat on the classroom and culture, but not much on the church. This is rather demeaning, considering SU’s status as a Christian institution founded by Protestant missionaries back in the day.
Moving on, I was taken aback when I noticed that SG had evolved from being a student-serving organization into an environmentalist movement towards the end of the school year. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, though. Perhaps their activities focused more on saving the environment because EnviroCom was just too good that it outperformed the rest of SG’s committees. But a more plausible reason could be that being an “environmentalist” was and is the hype. If Facebook and twitter had urged everyone to help save animals by adopting cats for instance, then no doubt, SG would have turned into a cat-saving movement and told the students to do the same.
To sum it all up, I would give this year’s SG a so-so rating. There were lapses, there were milestones; some expectations have been met, while others have been crushed. But overall, SG is still a governing body that is like any other governing body in my eyes.
Next week, a new set of leaders will take their place in the SUSG office. Merriam Webster lists a ton of positive virtues that must be found in a leader (e.g. patience, open-mindedness, etc.), which I also hope to find in those who will win in the upcoming elections. Surely, those who have decided to run for the corresponding seats understand what it means to have the weight of the whole SU student concerns on their shoulders. With this, I am convinced that those who will win have the backbone to govern the students of this university.