Thursday, April 14, 2016

Where Do I Begin?

Can you believe its been 6 years since I left this blog and focused on college? Its funny, if you scroll a few pages back, you can find my post about “my college experience so far.” I really did try to maintain this blog through college. As a freshman I thought I could (hence the “college experience so far” post). Unfortunately after that first year, things didn’t get any easier. I struggled – crawled through countless Calculus and Physics classes. It was only last year when I finished the last 5 units of Calculus in our curriculum. I thought after that year, it was the end. No more stress. Goodbye sleepless nights. I only had 12 units (which meant 3 classes) to take on my final year, so I was expecting to breeze through it.

I was wrong. Thesis was probably the most challenging year for me.  I entered thesis year with the mindset that I wasn’t going to make thesis my whole life –unlike how most people get during this time. I thought “Well. I’m not running for best thesis or anything special like that anyway. All I want to do is graduate. I’m just going to wing this.

Well that plan backfired. I entered thesis year and everyone was extremely competitive.  How could I maintain my “I don’t care” attitude when the pressure was so strong? I began to care. I became competitive because everyone else was so competitive! It would have been fine if there were others who didn’t care like me. But since everyone was competitive, I had to step my game up and also be competitive. I sure as hell didn’t want to present mediocre work compared to my peers.

And so, the road to thesis ensued. For two semesters, we worked intently on developing our individual projects. The sleepless nights I thought were gone forever, returned –times two.  In my 6 years of Architecture, this year was the first time I was awake for 48 hours straight. I didn’t even have time to eat. It was the kind of hustle where you know you cant eat because eating takes time and if you ate you wouldn’t be able to make it on the deadline. I told myself thesis wouldn’t become my entire world, but it did.

Fast forward to the last few weeks before deliberations which were the toughest for me, emotionally.  This was during final submissions of our architectural sheets, then the MEPS  sheets (Mechanical, Electrical, Plumbing, Structurals). I was seeing everyones final works and I couldn’t help but compare myself. I was never a designer. As an architecture student, I was more interested in construction rather than design. So of course I couldn’t help but compare myself to the rest of my batchmates when I saw their designs and how detailed and beautiful they were compared to mine. My drafting was bad too. Basically, everyone was so much more advanced than me, and I couldn’t help from feeling bad about myself. Thoughts like “You studied Architecture for 6 years and this is all the kind of work you can produce?” entered my mind. There were many things I didn’t know how to execute through computer programs, but it was too late to learn everything since I was simultaneously working on my design. I did what I could with my measly computer skills. Submitted all my sheets. Did my model. Now all that’s left were deliberations.

I was scheduled on the last day of deliberations, so pressure was on me since almost everyone already passed by the time that it was my turn. Initially, and I even remember tweeting this, I said that it would be OK for me to do re-deliberations since for sure we’ll all pass as long as we submitted all the requirements. It was not until our faculty, Sir Chua, posted in our Facebook group of how proud he was of us because those who had their delibs all passed so far. I was pressured by this post. I was ready to accept defeat if it was meant to be, but when he posted this and I saw how happy he was that all his “children” passed so far, I didn’t want to be that one and only child who would disappoint him.

I now wanted to pass and not do redelibs. Not for me, but for my faculty. I wanted to make Sir Chua proud that all his students passed in one go. I saw the happiness it brought him, and I didn’t want to be that student who took that happiness away. And so, I worked harder to make sure I pass. I couldn’t change anything in my sheets anymore, so instead I just prepared extra hard for my presentation. I had a 6 page script, 4 page kodigo, and I printed extra CAD working drawings just in case my panel asked for anything that I wasn’t able to provide in my sheets. I was prepared. More than prepared. I did everything to salvage my thesis. If I had to do redeliberations, I wouldnt feel bad because I knew in my heart that I did my best and exerted maximum effort. I was content knowing that I genuinely put effort into my presentation, and in the scenario that I would have to do redelibs, I would never have regrets thinking “I should have done this, I should have done that, I should have prepared this”, etc.

And so, the day came and with God's grace and the kindest panel, I passed! I finally passed my undergraduate thesis and I am officially one last step towards graduation. It was a long hard journey, but hey, I made it! We all made it. 

please see my next post for my Acknowledgments to the people who made this all possible. I am nothing without them. My presentation board is also posted at the end of my Acknowledgments post so please read until the end if you would like to see it.

1 comment:

Diana Cummings said...

Admin, if not okay please remove!

Our facebook group “selfless” is spending this month spreading awareness on prostate cancer & research with a custom t-shirt design. Purchase proceeds will go to, as listed on the shirt and shirt design.