By Joshua Cabrera, HS 4A
Aspiring entrepreneurs from high schools all over Metro Manila attended the LSGH Youth Congress 2015 held at the Br. Donato FSC Center for Performing Arts on October 7, 2015.
The event, marking the school’s first Humanities and Social Sciences (HUMSS) Week, challenged the Filipino Youth to envision national development through the lenses of entrepreneurship.
The forum themed “The Youth and the Challenge of Entrepreneurship Today” invited professional enterprise owners to show students the conduct and potential of embarking on new business ventures. The speakers urged the students to find and develop passion and creativity as weapons in the competitive and risky path of becoming an entrepreneur.
“We live in the age of design,” attested LSGH Batch 2005 Alumnus Mark Anthony Z. San Diego. “If you’re a good designer, no matter what China can copy from you, China cannot copy your mind.”
Lakbay Kalikasan (Outbound Education) Founder and Managing Director Ramon L. Jocson argued that because of abundance, automation, and Asia, the 21st century “will be the time of the creative people.” He claimed that while people still need engineers, scientists, lawyers, and the like, these professions already “had their time.”
“There are so many products and services out there, from your gadgets to everything,” said Mr. Jocson. “When we were kids, we would use to play out in the street because we had practically no resources [and] no implements to play with, but [now], because of abundance, we have so many choices. Entrepreneurship is the way of the future if you really want this country to develop.”
Mr. Jocson also advocated the fresh idea of the social entrepreneurship model, focused on measures of profit, people, and planet, as opposed to that of traditional entrepreneurship, focused on profit, productivity, and performance. He narrated the story of how the Apo Island community transformed a traditional enterprise into a social enterprise.
For their traditional enterprise, fishermen used the unsustainable practice of dynamite fishing to increase output, but with Dr. Angel C. Alcala from Siliman University, the people ceased fishery and instead built a marine sanctuary and invested in tourism to form a social enterprise. Earning a profit of seven billion pesos from souvenirs alone, people who previously could not afford televisions even earned enough money to buy themselves tricycles.
“Social Entrepreneurship is business doing good for other people,” said Mr. Jocson. “You measure it in three ways: how much you will earn, how much impact you will create in the lives of other people, and how you will help the environment. The business must be owned by the community; the profit must go back to the community.”
A few lucky students won free tickets to the block screenings of Spectre and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 as Mrs. Mys V. Sandico, CEO of PMCM Events Management, challenged the audience to a Trademark Quiz. Students had to guess correctly which companies the trademarks, such as “Just do it.” and “Think different.”, belong to.
Mrs. Sandico cited that similar to their personal lives, businessmen and businesswomen need to dress to the nines, talk the talk, and walk the walk to close the deal. Believing in the science of attraction, she underlined that people need personal vision boards for themselves to have set goals to gravitate towards.
“Success comes from self-packaging,” said Mrs. Mys V. Sandico, CEO of PMCM Events Management. “Building a recognizable personal brand opens professional opportunities.”
In between the talks, students experienced lively intermission numbers from LSGH AirForce and Bianca’s Flowers and, to break the ice, played a spirited game of Human Bingo. Members from the Social Science Organizations also gave the visitors a campus tour.
The event was a collaborative effort between the Social Science Department Organizations, namely the Economics Society (EconSoc), the Multi-Cultural Club (MCC), Renaissance, Ahimsa, and Kasaysayan, and the English and Filipino Department, with preparations beginning as early as September.
Students Fight for Bragging Rights
Mr. Harold A. Diokno, the head event organizer, pitched the two halves of the audience against each other in a Marketing Challenge. Students laughed and cheered as each group’s representatives took the stage, creatively presenting and resiliently defending their respective mangosteen by-products.
As words of advice, Mr. Diokno pointed out that “the market works according to recall,” stressing the value of branding. “Like, for example, how much is the Ariel again?” he asked – to which the rip-roaring students enthusiastically replied, “Seven-fifty!” – “That’s brand recall.”
The challenge contained aspects that real entrepreneurs would have to consider, such as company background, production plan, financial plan, competition analysis, and retail price. In the end, the second group won the audience’ and judges’ hearts with its “MangosTEAn” product with the tagline “You will be HEALTEA”, winning the challenge and garnering the best bragging rights of the day.
Humanities Bring Out More Possibilities
The English and Filipino Departments pitched in to facilitate the Poetry Slam Contest, the Kompetisyon ng Pagsulat ng Personal na Sanaysay (Personal Essay Writing Contest), and the Pinoy Pop Culture Quiz Bee.
The English Department advocated Poetry Slam in the Philippines as visiting students virgin to the spoken word captivated the audience as they poured out their heart and soul on stage for the first time. To kick off the contest, senior LSGH students Joaquin R. Ignacio and Lance Oliver G. Padilla performed their poetry slam entitled “Sole Soul”.
“Spoken word or poetry slam is at its infancy here in the Philippines,” said Mr. Brian Jeffrey B. Moreno, an English HS4 teacher. “The main objective of this contest is for [LSGH] to expose you, the youth, to spoken word in the hope that you will be able to keep on fanning the fire and the flame of hope for spoken word because it is a very beautiful art.”
The Filipino Department sought to awaken students’ personal and cultural identity as they explored and revisited today’s national trends.
Poetry Slam Contest
Third Place: Mr. Miguel Antonio G. Maddela (St. Mary’s College Quezon City)
Second Place: Mr. Josemaria V. Alipio (Lourdes School of Quezon City)
First Place: Mr. Jofelle John V. Jipos (Pasig Catholic College)
Kompetisyon ng Pagsulat ng Personal na Sanaysay
Pangatlong Gantimpala: Bb. Alyssa Rhose D. del Prado (San Felipe Neri Parochial School)
Pangalawang Gantimpala: Bb. Jean Khladyn Stefanie L. Abarquez (St. Mary’s College Quezon City)
Unang Gantimpala: Bb. Joshell Mharielle G. Sion (Domuschola International School)
Pop Culture Quiz Bee
Third Place St. Mary’s College Quezon City
Second Place Xavier School
First Place San Felipe Neri Parochial School