by: Gladelyn Bautista - BSF II

The Office of Student Affairs & Services (OSAS) with the Federated Iloilo State College of Fisheries College Supreme Student Government (FISCOF-CSSG) held KampSama 2020: The ISCOF System Student Leaders’ Training Camp on February 10-12, 2020 at ISCOF San Enrique Campus in the Province of Iloilo.

Over 150 delegates from different clubs and organizations attended. They represented all five ISCOF campuses: Main Tiwi, Main Poblacion, Dingle, Dumangas and San Enrique, this year’s host.

In the span of three days, the student-leaders had their fill of fun and interactive learning. Training modules were designed to give them maximum opportunity to know themselves and the values they should possess, collaborate with others and hone their leadership potentials.

There was no time to waste as each day was full-packed. On day 1, Kampers were welcomed by Dr. Rosie Llasus (VP for Academic Affairs), Dr. Rex Diaz (CA ISCOF SEC) and Dr. Gladys Belicena (VP for Administrative Affairs) – who represented Dr. Godelyn Hisole (SUC II President) who was under the weather at the time. The orientation followed by Dr. Rhoda Pamposa (OSAS Chair SEC) and Prof. Grace Bunda(OSAS Director).

After the opening ceremonies, Kampers were then divided into ten Kamps and they went on to create their own flags and cheers. They were told about the rules and scoring system which will be implemented throughout the Kamp. It was then aimed by each kamp to try to gain points and avoid demerits. Participants also wrote their expectations from the Kamp. There’s a catch though- it must be just six words long!

The first session began after dinner with Prof. John Nino Crauz (Adviser CSSC Main) delivering the lecture on The Historical Roots of Student Organizing and Movement in the Philippines. He talked about the concept of student leadership and its role in society and nation building. The youth has always been the catalyst of change and we should remember who we truly are!

Prof. Grace Bunda gave the final lecture of the day and talked about self awareness. Each of us has a known self, hidden self, blind and unknown self and that it is important that we “Nosce te ipsum” (Know thyself).

In the succeeding days, Kampers would have an early call time-5:30 am- to start out with an exercise in the form of zumba led by assigned kamps. They would proceed with the day’s itinerary and reflections about the previous day’s activities.

Day 2 had a series of resource speakers sharing their insights about what a leader should be, their advocacies and their own experiences as leaders in their own fields. Kampers had the opportunity to meet Ms. Erin Larissa Canto (YSEALI fellow/ SHELL President) who talked about environmentalism and youth empowerment. “Everything is connected to everything else”,she said. There’s hope with action. Start small and start with yourself. Ms. Daniella Julieta Caro (Lead Officer FDCP Iloilo) discussed how leaders are influencers. Leaders have to empower the team, take on the greater role of representing the minority and vulnerable, to speak for those who cannot speak for themselves and be their advocate. And in this digital times, we shouldn’t spread misinformation. We have to be responsible. In the field of governance, Hon. Precious Grace Panizales (SB Member Municipality of San Enrique) took time to share leadership values and best practices she adheres to such as: arming yourself with knowledge, knowing your obligations, empowering yourself and learning how to listen as an integral part of consultative leadership. She advises, “Don’t react when you’re mad”. Resilient and motivational leadership was the topic of Mr. Carl Myson Dulla (Project Dev’t. Officer DSWD VI). According to him, “Build a stronger you so that you could effectively lead a team”. He added, leaders are superheroes. They are visionaries, advocates, volunteers and changemakers; but, they have their weaknesses too. Becoming resilient doesn’t happen overnight so he advises to trust the process. Prof. Grace Bunda delivered the last talk for the day which covered breakthrough thinking, branding , quality and teamwork. “Student leaders are in the position to influence and effect change”, she said. EQ and SQ are just as important as IQ so we should aim for holistic and well rounded education and be leaders of empowerment. The second day ended with a bonfire and solidarity night where facilitators and kampers had their presentations.

The Sambuwa challenge happened on the third day where kampers had the chance to put their teamwork and strategies to the test as they were tasked to find different stations based on given clues and perform an activity and reflect on it afterwards. In the closing ceremonies, Dr.Gladys Belicena gave her message and introduced the keynote speaker in the person of Hon. Hernan Biron Sr.(Vice mayor Barotac Nuevo) who represented his grandson Hon. Braeden John Biron (Congressman 4th District of Iloilo). Impressions of Kamps 1-10 were delivered and then signing of the Pledge of Commitment by all participants. The awarding ceremonies then commenced and Hon. Karl Jan Cado(Student Trustee, President FISCOFCSSG) gave his emotional closing remarks.

Here’s what the kampers had to say about their Kampsama 2020 experience:

“It is very different from the other camps or leadership training that I have attended before. It is very useful and helpful for me as a student-leader.”-Kampay

“Kampsama 2020 was a great training for students in molding their skills,values and personality to become an efficient leader”-Kamp Funny

“Kampsama 2020 honed us into a responsible and good leader not just in our school but also in the community.That will help us to be a good individual and role model to everyone”-Kampyun

“To be in a camp like Kampsama is a great experience for a student like me who enjoys the fellowship and learning of new ideas to develop myself”-Kampuso,Main Pob.

“It is a privilege to be a part of this leadership training.We know as student-leaders,our purpose is to be the voice of the people who can’t express their thoughts and opinions,ideas and knowledge.It is a wonderful experience to join Kampsama 2020”-Kamp Pinuno

“Kampsama 2020 was a great experience. We have learned so much and also it tests our trust, unity and coordination when it comes to the SAMBUWA CHALLENGE”-Kamp Barkada

“Ang Kampsama 2020 ay malaking tulong sa isang estudyante para hasain at idebelop ang mga kakayahan bilang student-leader.Maraming bagay at kaalaman ang natutunan ko mula sa Kampsama at ito ay aking gagamitin sa pangaraw-araw na pamumuhay”- Kampuso,Main Tiwi

“Kampsama for me is a once in a lifetime experience.I really enjoyed all of the activities that were prepared and learned a lot from them. I will forever treasure the memories we had created and use the things that I learned for the future.”-Kampyun

“It was the happiest day of my life.”-Kamp Agila

“It was unexpectedly enjoyable. I never imagined to meet a family here.”-KampFunny

What was set up to be a three day training camp for student-leaders to be aware of the core values they must possess, develop their skills, potentials and character turned out to be more. As they have put into words what Kampsama meant for them, the participants have been planted seeds to hopefully impact the whole ISCOF system in a positive and progressive way.