Sunday, July 13, 2008

Out of the Mouths of Babes - Quiapo

"Mommy I am sad, sakay tayo LRT, punta tayo Quiapo

para bili ako ng kapatid"

It was my mom's birthday yesterday July 12, and my brothers came to wish her a happy birthday. My brother Jon brought with him his family and so my son was happy to have his cousins to play with. I was not at home then for I was in a strategic planning workshop in school. I came home aroung 5 in the afternoon and my mother told me about her visitors that afternoon.

I was wondering where is my son Lorenzo for he did not came rushing to greet me as he always do. When I went to our room I saw my son playing on the bed and I ask how is he. He replied "Mommy I am sad, sakay tayo LRT, punta tayo Quiapo para bili ako ng kapatid". Then he tearfully told me about his cousin Matt and his brother Jet and that they are gone now and he has no one to play with, and he wished he has a brother too.

I told him that he has no brother as of now but maybe if he can wait till next year we can have one. Still depressed about now having a brother now I just told him that we love him and we are a family naman.

This morning he woke me up and told me that we can go to Quiapo today to look for his "kapatid". I told him that it is not that easy and we have to go somewhere else today. He went to church to pray to Jesus for a brother or sister and then drove his grandparents crazy about what to eat as they go to the mall.

I don't know where did he get the idea of buying a sibling at Quiapo but we do go to Quiapo as a family, we go to church there sometimes and buy toys and even our pet birds we bought in the area, maybe that is where he got the idea you can buy anything you wish for there. I asked all our family members if they told him to buy a brother in Quiapo but they denied it.

Friday, July 11, 2008

God is gracious, God is good

I wanted to celebrate my 10th year of teaching with a bang. I did not intend to have a career in teaching; I did not know I have the “calling”. Maybe it was already there but I did not recognize it.

I was very active in High School, a girl scout and a Red Cross volunteer I practically spent three years teaching about scouting and first aid. But I am quite in the classroom. I took my college years seriously concentrated in my studies and did not join any extra curricular activities, very opposite of my high school life. Maybe that is why I forgot about teaching, that it comes naturally for me, that I was trained to teach during my years in high school.

It was my dream to share what I know specially about IT, the Internet, blogging and now social networking but I found it hard to have a venue to share my knowledge, others I tried sharing how to blog felt insulted and view me as a show off. I just want them to enjoy what I do and reap from the benefits of these technologies.

Last month I thought that I can forget my dream and just be content with teaching, I have felt that I want to do more than just “teach”. I was ready to go up the ladder, take the helm or something. In short, I felt I was ready to be a manager, an administrator so I can share my vision, my dreams but I can’t see that happening in my academic career. I just prayed and let the Lord’s will be done. There were many frustrations and disappointments along the way in my academic life but I just can’t seem to totally cut myself off from teaching.

Then something happened yesterday, I thought that I would just be sharing my thoughts/know how on IT when I faced PLMar’s new university president and school officials. They were insisting on automating the student records with barely the IT infrastructure and people to do it. So I shared to them my views, past experiences and offered my services, I had no hidden agenda I just want to help the school then they formally ask me to be in charge of the university’s ICT development and ask me to join the two day strategic planning session of the university to plan the next steps we have to take in the next 5 years and ICT was its major consideration. And they even thank me for being in PLMar.

So today, I am ready to present my 5 year ICT plan to make PLMar an ICT-enabled university. It’s a lot of work, less sleep but I am happy, I even get to plan the ICT training program for all faculty and staff of the university to equip them when PLMar Go Online and offer online courses.

I thank the Lord with all my heart, now I know why despite of all efforts, I still did not have a teaching load at PUP this semester, its because He as a much bigger plan for me.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Managing a Business with IT

I am teaching Management Information System(MIS) to Business Administration students this semester. I am trying to finalize my syllabus for the subject to keep it updated with the current technology and at the same time find ways to make it more interesting to my students. It is hard to teach a subject to students that feel that the subject is of no interest to them. That is what I discovered in teaching Computer subjects to students taking up non IT courses; it’s hard to keep them motivated and is most of the time not interested in what you are teaching.

MIS is a very demanding subject to begin with and is one of the subjects in school that has a high failure rate. The subject requires an Information System Plan design project with a presentation/panel defense at the end of the semester, besides teaching about the really technical aspect about how to manage an enterprise which include IT facilities.

I was looking for ways that would make the subject more interesting and at the same time present the subject matter relevant/necessary for their course. After reviewing some books on the subject and even reviewing my notes I have while taking up my master’s degree, I decided to present the subject as a crucial aspect of managing a business today with IT playing a major part in its success and approach the subject in the viewpoint of a businessman. That got my students interested and alert during the three-hour lecture period.

My next topic to discuss is Information Technology, detailing the hardware, software, networks and databases needed to be considered in an enterprise. Hardware and software topics would not be a problem but I am having a difficult time in deciding how extensive should I teach computer networking.

I would like them to appreciate the technical side of it as well as make them understand how networks operate. I would also want them to know that aside from investing money in putting up a computer network for a company, this network must always be 100% operational or else the company loses money every time it is down. A Networking monitoring service must be in place so as to prevent or minimize network downtime.

There are so many aspects of networking I would like to discuss in a small amount of time. Maybe sticking to the managerial viewpoint would be wise way to do it.