by Allan Yves Briones
UPDATED: 08/05/2015 4:17PM
Broadcast journalist and UP College of Mass Communication alumna Karen Davila downplayed the role of student organizations in a college freshmen welcome assembly, Monday.
During her college years in the 80’s, Davila recalled how several of her batchmates were insulted and ridiculed just to join certain organizations, citing the UP Broadcasting Association (BroadAss) and UP Samahan ng Mag-aaral sa Komunikasyon (SAMASKOM).
“If you are joining a group and they want you there—you feel that you can make friends there, you’ll grow there. Then join them. Don’t join to the point na parang “I need to belong,” Davila said.
However, BroadAss President Dominic Nacorda said Davila is entitled to her own opinion.
“[I stand] by the fact that all student formations have their own culture [and] traditions that outsiders won’t understand,” he said.
Davila mentioned being an applicant for an organization, from where she eventually backed out.
“I went through a phase. It was the first phase… They make you cry, they insult you; you’re blindfolded and whatever,” she said, disclaiming she does not know whether the same holds true today.
SAMASKOM President April Katherine Damo, meanwhile, said their application process has a purpose.
“The goal is always for students to hone their skills and surpass their capabilities,” Damo said in an online interview. “It is always easier to be clouded by judgment when things get tough but what you take from your experiences will teach you to look beyond and see the bigger picture.”
The anchor added that she made it in the profession without being a part of any college-based organization. She was, however, a member of AIESEC UP Diliman, a university-wide organization.
“When you apply for a job, they’re not going to ask you what is your college [organization]. It’s not a factor,” she said. “I’m the living proof that it’s not a factor. If you are intelligent and diligent, you will get a job,” she added.
But Nacorda said there are opportunities when the organization’s alumni helped out resident [members].
The ABS-CBN anchor currently hosts news programs such as Headstart with Karen Davila and Bandila.
For CMCSC chairperson Ria Bernadette Tagle, what Davila has experienced before may not be true to current members now.
“Whatever you get from organizations, it’s a case-to-case basis,” Tagle, also a member of BroadAss, said. “We are not saying that joining organizations is a necessity but the point is, I hope they will see how organizations can help you put forward advocacies and hone your skills and talents,” she added.
More than a hundred freshmen and shiftees attended the carnival-themed welcome assembly organized by the local council.
“Chubibo: The Ferris Wheelcoming Assembly” was the kick-off event for the month-long freshmen, shiftees and transferees (FSTs) celebration in the college. FST Welcoming Assembly co-head Allison Laxamana urged the FSTs to look forward to similar events, including a media tour on August 10 and educational discussions, among others.