Congratulations, Batch 2015!

Photo by my brother, James Hostalero
PICC, Plenary Hall
My college graduation 
First, a big CONGRATULATIONS to all of you! I say, education is worth more than any amount of material things our money can buy. It is one of the treasures we could cherish and share to everyone forever; and to all of you who have decided to pursue and achieve your dreams; to all of you who have passed and finished your elementary, secondary and college degrees with and even without honors, soar high! You are one step closer to the betterment of our society. And, as early as now, you finally have made a difference.

The best advice I could give to all of you is... Don't STOP. Don't. No matter how the universe says otherwise. Like some of you, I have so many frustrations. I can't even say that I am successful (in the universe qualifications) right at this moment, but if feeling 'happy and contented' and/or finding 'genuine happiness' are to be registered as qualifications to label as successful, I am now, perhaps.

I graduated with  a Bachelor's Degree Major in Marketing Management from one of the top 10 universities in the Philippines and now continuing with various programs from internationally recognized educational institutions. When I was in college, I was 0.04 away from being a Dean's Lister and 0.07 away from Cum Lau De. Always almost but not quite. I know, I've worked extra hard for everything I do and sometimes, like most of you, I feel like my best wasn't good enough. But then, that taught me so much lessons - grades are just numbers, honors are just bonuses and it is always hardwork over talent. But, don't get me wrong. I salute all of you who have reached the utmost level of awards to graduate with flying colors, who have achieved positions in their respective student organizations and council and to those who have been recognized as one of the prides of their respective schools, colleges and/or universities. I salute you all for all the hardwork and passion you exerted for the past years of your lives. And I do hope that you will use all of your achievements to be one of the instruments of change.

Photo by Shainne Hostalero
FEU Diliman Grade School and High School Graduation 2015
(also posted on FEU Diliman's Facebook Page)
To all of you, don't let your standings overrule you. Don't let your emotions do the same too. Think, feel, and work hard for every little thing you do. No matter what the weather is and even the odds aren't in your favor, there should be 'no stopping' you.
You know what they say, 'Sometimes, we win. Sometimes, we LEARN.' No matter how it feels like you are far away from the top, always be reminded that for you to get there, you should take the first steps towards it.You may happened to have failing grades, but it shall not define how hardworking and how good as a person you are. I must say, and perhaps you know it well too, that sometimes the most intelligent and successful people are not always the good ones. We must always know how to remain our feet on the ground, that no matter how strong our wings are; we must never forget how to walk.

If you, by any chance, have encountered someone who degrades you, always remember that what they say is a reflection of them and not you. No matter what bad things they may do, don't let that in to your heart for they will just destroy the goodness in you.

For everyone of you who have loved and lost, for everyone who were cheated by their former partners, and for everyone who have done the same too... may the lessons from your experiences bring you to wonderful places and for the better phase in the the sphere of your lives. May all of those things that have happened in the past be a lesson to you to change for the better and to make up for the time you have lost luring around hate, anger, lies, and bitterness. May all of those teach you a lesson of trust, patience, contentment, acceptance and happiness.

To all of you who wishes to have another degree after graduation, please do so. To all of you who still have a long long way to go, I hope you all be guided by what's in your heart to achieve all of your dreams in life. To everyone who believes to whatever they can do to be a better person, I salute you.

May all of your dreams come true and may you be a happy instrument of change in this world. You make a difference. Congratulations, Batch 2015!



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