Few weeks ago, I had the privilege of joining the ceremony to recognize this year’s TOSP 2015. The ceremony was graced by the Cabinet Secretary Jose Rene Almendras, Commission on Higher Education Chairperson Dr. Patricia Licuanan and RFM Foundation President Marie Concepcion-Young. My father, Jose Concepcion Jr., was also present during the ceremony. It was great to have him again since he missed last year’s ceremony.
After the extensive school screening, regional selection and nomination process that gathered a total of two hundred thirty one (231) nominees from all over the country, the 30 National Finalists who have not only excelled academically, but have also lived a life of dedicated service and have made a difference in their respective communities, organizations, and fields of interest, was proudly presented.
In my speech, I have recognized the parents, teachers and school administrators in the audience. Why? Because they are the mentors and the sources of wisdom for these young heroes.
Mentorship is important as this process guides an individual to the right path with right competencies and right values. The parents and the teachers have guided these students as they all enter the real world. That is why I also believe in the saying that “the Future of the country depends on the parents and mentors”.
But still, the greatest problem we have is poverty. Despite the growing market capitalization and being one of the best countries to invest in, I feel that there is still a lacking element on how we can reduce poverty.
To that, I can only answer – Entrepreneurship. It has given the country with more jobs, especially for those former OFWs who had sacrificed just to provide for their families. It has given us foreign reserves. And most especially, it made every Filipino strive to move up in life and proved the resilience of many.
I say, education is the key to help others. Mentorship and education contribute to an individual making them enterprising not only as entrepreneurs but also in the other roles they will take in the future.
Success, in a way, is really for those who want it most. Nobody can force you to become successful. Not your parents, not your teachers, not your friends. You must want it. Success, when you achieved it, you must return. Learn to give back to the community that has brought you to where you are.
Successful people must help others to become successful.
Congratulations to the Ten Outstanding Student of the Philippines 2015 and I wish them the best success in life.
RFM Foundation Chairman and TOSP Founder Jose S. Concepcion Jr.
My wife, Marissa and me with Sec. Jose Rene Almendras and Dr. Patricia Licuanan.
In my speech, I have mentioned that in good or bad leadership, there are opportunities.
Hon. Patricia B. Licuanan of the Commission on Higher Education has always been a partner of TOSP in its search of exemplary outstanding students who will be the next leaders of this country.
Cabinet Secretary Jose Rene D. Almendras reminded that TOSPians, “May this award not only be tangible proof of recognition of your hard work and determination, but also a fervent motivation for you to strive harder and inspire generations of Filipino youths to follow on your footsteps.”,
In their batch response, all 30 Finalists for this search, represented by Mr. Gregg Louise C. Tolentino, put the context of being role models in the successor generation and to give hope in each in every Filipino, “Malugod ang pagtanggap naming lahat sa pribilehiyong makapaglingkod at makatugon sa mga isyu ng lipunan. Ang maging parte ng pamilyang tunay na nagmamahal sa Inang bayan at nagtitiwalang “Yes, the Filipino can.”
RFM Corporation President and CEO Jose Ma. Concepcion III, CHED Chair Patricia B. Licuanan, Cabinet Secretary Jose Rene D. Almendras, RFM Foundation Chairman and TOSP Founder Jose S. Concepcion Jr. and RFM Foundation President Marie Concepcion – Young during the awarding ceremony in Heroes’ Hall Malacanang.
The Ten Outstanding Students of the Philippines 2015. Khenn B. Arquiza of Western Mindanao State University, Apolinario A. Bagano Jr. of Benguet State University, Maria Stephanie A. Gaña of Far Eastern University, Lynrose Jane D. Genon of Mindanao State University – Iligan Institute of Technology, Raphael Aaron A. Letaba of University of the Philippines-Diliman, Fharnieza S. Mohammad of Western Mindanao State University, Ma. Nerissa M. Nicolas of Dr. Yanga’s Colleges Inc., Adriel Gamier G. Sanchez of University of San Jose Recoletos, Gregg Louise C. Tolentino of De La Salle University and Ryan Y. Yu of Ateneo de Manila University.
One of the Ten Outstanding Students of the Philippines 2015, Raphael Aaron Letaba is a graduate of University of the Philippines – Diliman in Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and Accountancy. UP Diliman also awarded him with the Gawad ng Tsanselor sa Natatanging Mag-aaral 2015.