Kumusta Po Kayo?

Kumustahan - March 19, 2018

Text and Photos by Jonathan S. Lacson, Assistant for Formation, FPTI – ERDA Tech

It was a fun and memorable night on Monday, March 19, 2018 as the annual Sponsors and Scholars’ Appreciation Night, more commonly called the Kumustahan, was held at the Function Room of the Fr. Rafael Cortina Sports Center in Xavier School San Juan.

The event organized by the Xavier School Parents Auxiliary brought together 59 students from Fr. Pierre Tritz Institute – ERDA Tech and their sponsors who are parents of Xavier School students. Fr. Aristotle Dy, S.J., president of both Xavier School San Juan and ERDA Tech, as well as Mr. Peter Marc Magsalin, current principal of ERDA Tech, thanked the Xavier parents for their continuing support in the education of the less fortunate youth, and encouraged them to also support the establishment of ERDA Tech’s new campus in Tanauan, Batangas which is set to open in school year 2019-2020.

Machining student Mark Darylle Infante of Grade 12 – St. Ignatius of Loyola (Batch 19, Class of 2018) and alumnus Izthifen Lord Gonzales (Batch 17, Class of 2015) shared their experiences as ERDAnians and the valuable lessons they have learned and are applying in their lives. They also expressed their gratitude to all those who have helped them acquire their ERDA Tech education.

Likewise, the parents, through the XSPA reaffirmed their commitment to help ERDA Tech by turning over to the school their most recent cash donations.

The ERDAnians showcased their artistic side through their rendition of the song “My Heart Will Go On”, the theme song of the hit film “Titanic” in the late 1990s. This number was extra special since the students sang certain portions of the song in Chinese, to the surprise and joy of the audience.

After a delightful night of fun, food, conversations, and exchange of tokens: handheld crosses from the students, food containers from the Xavier parents, the sponsors and the scholars parted ways, all with fond memories of this event which they will treasure.

Mr. Johnny Lu, a childhood friend and batchmate of Fr. Ari Dy, is this year’s chair of the XSPA Kumustahan Committee. Mrs. Tess Andres, Mrs. Rowena Dela Cruz, Mr. Elmer Bueno, and Mrs. Margie Antonio handled the preparations from the end of ERDA Tech.

Aside from the Xavier School-seconded teachers to ERDA Tech: Mr. Peter Marc Magsalin, Mr. Christian Bumatayo, Mr. Felix Pangan, and this writer, administrators of the elementary and high school departments of Xavier School San Juan: Mrs. Flora Alfonso, Miss Joanne Clarissa Pusta, and Mr. Alvin Ang were also present at the event.

Grade 12 Closing Salu-Salo

Text and Photos by Jonathan S. Lacson, Assistant for Formation, FPTI – ERDA Tech; Additional Photos by Joel S. Sulit, Assistant to the Student Activities Program Coordinator, FPTI – ERDA Tech

Four months of work immersion and the accompanying mentoring sessions during the in-school reporting days have quickly flown by, and the grade 12 students (Batch 19, Class of 2018), together with their teachers, found themselves gathered at Cafe Tritz for their closing activity.

Mr. Elmer Bueno, the Campus Ministry Coordinator led the group in a paraliturgy which was followed by the opening remarks by Industry Linkage Coordinator Miss Marilyn Benedicto.

Charlene Versoza (Gr. 12 – St. Peter Faber), Courtney Gwen Dela Cruz (Gr. 12 – St. Peter Faber, and Mark Darylle Infante (Gr. 12 – St. Ignatius of Loyola), with instrumentalists Jansen Keifer Dela Paz (Gr. 12 – St. Francis Xavier) and Mark Jacob Funtalva (Gr. 12 – St. Ignatius of Loyola) then rendered song numbers while Erwin Lucio (Gr. 12 – St. Francis Xavier) and Jeehan Morales (Gr. 12 – St. Ignatius of Loyola) rendered spoken poetry.

Everyone then had a satisfying meal of spaghetti, burger, turon, juices, and soda over smiles, laughter and conversations that would have lasted forever had there been no time limit. To cap the event, this writer gave the closing remarks.

Best buddies Mujahid Basiman and Zandra Loraine Quisao (both of Gr. 12 – St. Peter Faber) were the masters of ceremonies.

This school year’s in-school reporting mentors are Mrs. Eden Baltazar, Mr. Pierce Gallego, Mr. Noe Libradilla, Mr. David Reyes, Mr. Ramon Christopher Ricafrente, Mr. Mark Rivera, Mr. Joel Sulit, and Miss Reichelle Torricer. Valuable inputs on work and life skills were given by Fr. Munching de Guzman, S.J., Mr. Christian Bumatayo, and this writer.

Over the next few days, the grade 12 students shall attend to clearance and graduation preparation concerns in anticipation of their big day: graduation.

Ash Wednesday Mass

Ash Wednesday Mass

Text by Jonathan S. Lacson, Assistant for Formation, FPTI – ERDA Tech; Photos by  Rowena B. Dela Cruz, Sponsorship Program Coordinator, FPTI – ERDA Tech

The school community observed the beginning of the season of Lent with a mass presided by Fr. Munching De Guzman, S.J.. In this time of conversion through God’s guidance, Fr. Munching emphasized praying, fasting, and giving not for the approval and admiration of others but for a genuine desire to make oneself closer to God and more compassionate toward others.

Twice the Fun and the Learning

Fun Run and TEDx 2018

Text by Jonathan S. Lacson, Assistant for Formation, FPTI – ERDA Tech; Photos by Tracy Ann G. Rotarta, Prefect of Discipline, FPTI – ERDA Tech and Joel S. Sulit, Assistant to the Student Activities Program Coordinator, FPTI – ERDA Tech

For two successive Saturdays, January 20 and 27, 2018, the ERDA Tech community participated in events sponsored by Xavier School San Juan: the Xavier Stallion Family Fun Run 2018 and TEDx.

Very early in the morning of January 20, the ERDA Tech delegation composed of 37 grade 11 students, three grade 12 students, and 21 faculty and staff arrived at the Xavier School San Juan campus for the fun run. They joined the segment of their choice: 1K, 3K, 5K, and 10K and, together with the Xavier School family and friends, ran and/or walked their hearts out for the sake of good health and bonding with one another. At the end of the run, the participants then enjoyed making the rounds of the various sponsors to get their freebies.

On January 27, the ERDA Tech community was once again in Xavier School, this time to attend the TEDx which featured speakers from different fields of expertise. This year’s theme is Stories in Motion. Attending this event were 10 grade 11 students and six teachers. Adding to the wealth of knowledge and wisdom that the participants obtained were ample food and delightful freebies as well.

Indeed, ERDA Tech is very blessed to have been close to the heart of the Xavier School community. In return, it does its best to excel in the field of technical-vocational education and to extend any form of assistance to Xavier.


Viva, Sto. Nino! (Buling-Buling 2018)

Sto. Nino

Text and Photos by Jonathan S. Lacson, Assistant for Formation, FPTI – ERDA Tech; Additional Photos by Joel S. Sulit, Assistant to the Student Activities Program Coordinator, FPTI – ERDA Tech and Rowena B. Dela Cruz, Sponsorship Program Coordinator, FPTI – ERDA Tech

Saturday, January 13, 2017 was festive in Pandacan, Manila with the various events in connection with the Feast of the Sto. Nino de Pandacan (Buling-Buling Festival). Though the actual date of the feast is January 21, the Roman Catholic Church opted to hold it a week earlier to merge with the celebration of the Philippine Independent Church (Aglipayan).

The Fr. Pierre Tritz Institute – ERDA Tech community participated in the event, as it has done so for the past several years. This year, all the dancers in the Buling-Buling Dance Procession were students, ably trained by Mr. Mark Rivera, Student Activities Program Coordinator. The faculty and the staff served as banner bearers, marshals, carrosa bearers, and attendants to the dancers.

After the speeches by the different guests which included city councilors, a paraliturgy was held, and then the procession began. As the ERDA Tech delegation moved to the front of the stage, it was acknowledged for its active participation over the years, the latest being the final time since the school shall be transferring to Tanauan, Batangas in 2019.

With dedication and enthusiasm, the ERDAnian dancers weaved through the streets of Pandacan despite the afternoon heat and certain parts of the route which were narrow because of so many people watching.

The procession ended at the churchyard at about past five in the afternoon, after which the participants headed back to school for a well-deserved early dinner.

The school’s working committee for this year’s Buling-Buling Festival was composed of Mrs. Tess Andres, chairperson; Mrs. Marge Antonio, assistant chairperson; and members: Mrs. Tracy Ann Rotarta, Mrs. Rowena Dela Cruz, Mr. Joel Sulit, Mr. Felix Pangan, and Mr. Mark Rivera.

The student dancers were James Rohbin Besa, Rubilea Anthonette Pangindian, Ivann Matthew Azarcon, Florence Kate De Leon, Ryan Charles Binuya, Annabelle Lorraine Malic, Danico Danielle Orobia, Princess Kyle Girado, Rhei Jefferson Sison, Arlen Wayan, Darryl Caronan, Dhavie Desabelle Aquino, Mark Jester Pingol, Jersey Wayne Cortez, J-Skie Laguinday, Geoliene Cura, John Paulo Mesa, Gerardene Baltazar, Jeric Gaviola, Blessie Vi Aguilar, Christian Madrid, Abegail Lapinig, John Mark Larracochea, Marjorie Aguja, Raemiel Infante, Kruza Vhryz Sison, Glen Geric Cadion, Justine Baluyot, Olsen Prince Moral, and Red Juzzel Enriquez.

One Community, One Celebration

Text and Photos by Jonathan S. Lacson, Assistant for Formation, FPTI – ERDA Tech; Additional Photos by Joel S. Sulit, Assistant to the Student Activities Program Coordinator, FPTI – ERDA Tech and Rowena B. Dela Cruz, Sponsorship Program Coordinator, FPTI – ERDA Tech

To end the year, Fr. Pierre Tritz Institute – ERDA Tech held on Friday, December 22 the Holiday Shindig 2017 which was spearheaded by the Student Body Organization (SBO) under the moderatorship of Mr. Mark Rivera, Student Activities Program Coordinator.

The day began with an institutional mass officiated by Fr. Richard Babao, parish priest of the Ina ng Laging Saklolo Parish in Punta, Sta. Ana where many ERDAnians reside.

It was followed by a program at the St. Ignatius of Loyola Hall wherein the grade 11 classes gave performances and hosted games for the students, faculty, and staff.

By late morning, everyone was having lunch courtesy of each grade 11 class. The school also provided spaghetti and C2 juice for everybody.

Awards were given to the winning teams and classes in the games and in the classroom decoration contest. In the latter activity, Grade 11 – St. Lorenzo Ruiz under Miss Hazelyn Verdejo won first place, Grade 11 – St. Pedro Calungsod under Mrs. Eden Baltazar got second place, and Grade 11 – St. Dominic Savio under Mr. Pierce Gallego garnered third place.

Exhilarated and looking forward to the final stretch of school year 2017-2018, the members of the school community bade goodbye to one another for a much-needed and well-earned two-week break.


Party Time

Text and Photos by Jonathan S. Lacson, Assistant for Formation, FPTI – ERDA Tech; Additional Photos by Rowena B. Dela Cruz, Sponsorship Program Coordinator, FPTI – ERDA Tech

As soon as the last ERDAnian left the campus on December 21, 2017, an afternoon of fun and laughter began for the faculty and the staff of Fr. Pierre Tritz Institute – ERDA Tech  as they gathered for their yearly Christmas Party.

Interspersed in the event ably and delightfully emceed by Xavier School volunteer and Assistant for Academics Mr. Christian Bumatayo were raffle draws, games, and two surprise activities.

This year’s raffle prizes were bountiful such that each one got something, ranging from household items, food, drinks, and gift checks.

Assigned their respective numbers, the faculty and the staff were randomly called to form groups that would compete in the bottle flipping and the sequencing games.

This year, the White Elephant and the Bato, Bato, Win were introduced to the teachers and the staff. In the former, everyone brought wrapped items which are still worth using. Divided into two groups that would simultaneously play, the players put the items on the tables, and the two-round game began. In the first round, one who gets an odd number after rolling the dice gets nothing while one who gets an even number may get any two items from the bunch. The round ends when there is no more item left unpicked. Everyone then tore the wrappers to reveal the items. In the second round which lasted for 12 minutes, it was a free-for-all which means that, depending on what one would get after rolling the dice (odd – no item, even – one item, two of the same number – two items), anybody may get anything that he/she wanted even if somebody already has possession of the items. It was a frenzied round as everyone was rushing to claim and reclaim items while trying to beat the clock.

As for the latter, the Bato,Bato, Win, the group was divided into pairs. Each one had ten pesos, and with one count of scissors, rock, and paper, the winner got the other one’s money. All initial winners then found another partner, and the cycle was repeated, the group becoming smaller with each cycle, until only one was left victorious, Mrs. Hilda Prago, security personnel.

The abundance of food and drinks (pizza, chicken, barbecue, sweets, butitas, soda, juices) added to the merriment of everybody.

The last and highly-awaited part was the exchange of gifts made exciting by the revelation of who got whose name and which gift would be given.

As always, the faculty and the staff were very pleased, their stress lessened if not entirely removed, and their sagging spirits boosted and re-energized, thanks to the very generous sponsors of ERDA Tech who are worthy of admiration and gratitude.

Grade 12 Salu-Salo

Text by Jonathan S. Lacson, Assistant for Formation, FPTI – ERDA Tech; Photos by Rowena B. Dela Cruz, Sponsorship Program Coordinator, FPTI – ERDA Tech

On December 20, 2017, the fourth in-school reporting day of the grade 12 students who are undergoing their work immersion in the second semester, the school prepared something special for them. Instead of the usual input and discussion at the Audiovisual Room and the sharing sessions in the various mentoring venues on campus afterward, Batch 19, together with their mentors, school administrators, and volunteer guidance counselor, Miss Everdina Ruiz, gathered at Cafe Tritz.

The event began with a paraliturgy led by Mr. Elmer Bueno, Campus Ministry Coordinator. Miss Marilyn Benedicto, Industry Linkage Coordinator gave the opening remarks. After an ice-breaker facilitated by Mr. Mark Rivera, everyone ate lunch consisting of spaghetti, chicken, leche flan, and iced tea.

It was a joyous moment as the students, who had not seen one another for a week because of their respective duties in their work immersion companies, shared their stories over lunch.

Mr. Peter Marc Magsalin, school principal, gave the closing remarks, wherein he acknowledged the 11 grade 12 students who shall be starting their studies at the Gokongwei Brothers Foundation (GBF) in January 2018, and whose remaining work immersion hours shall be waived.

Earlier, on Saturday, December 16, 2017, a smaller group of students had their salu-salo. This is the group that reports to school on Saturdays since their employers require them to report to work on Wednesdays.

With both happiness and sadness, the students, clutching their annual Christmas baskets courtesy of the very hardworking and dedicated Atty. Charlemagne Yu of the school’s board of trustees, bade goodbye to each other as the salu-salo ended, looking forward to the next time they can once again gather as a batch.

In-School Reporting

by Marilyn Benedicto, Industry Linkage Coordinator, FPTI-ERDA Tech

As part of the Work Immersion Program of the Grade 12 students during the second semester, a once-a-week In-School Reporting (ISR) is allotted for mentoring sessions as well as inputs on Spirituality of Work.

At the moment, the Grade 12 students have already had four ISR days. Majority of the students report to school on Wednesdays while the rest have theirs on Saturdays as part of a special arrangements with the employers of the latter.

Students are grouped randomly and assigned to a specific mentor to whom they can freely share their experiences, whether good or not-so-good, at the workplace.

It is a good opportunity for students to share with their mentors and batchmates  the joys of their training, the new things they learned, and the new friendships they have made.

Students also talk about their challenges and concerns such as commuting to and from work, dealing with coworkers, supervisors, and clients, as well as difficulties with their tasks.

The weekly meeting in school is helpful to motivate students as they take this new endeavor. It is also a time for students to be reunited with everyone.

The Work Immersion Program is not just a requirement of the K+12 Senior High School Curriculum for TVL but is also a meaningful program that will ensure students’ enhancement of skills, acquisition of new knowledge and competencies, as well as development of a positive work attitude.



Pilgrimage 2017

Pilgrimage Prayer

Text and Photos by Jonathan S. Lacson, Assistant for Formation, FPTI – ERDA Tech

The Serviam Club of Fr. Pierre Tritz Institute – ERDA Tech embarked on a pilgrimage on Sunday, October 29, 2017. The group, composed of altar servers, lectors, and commentators and led by its moderator, Mr. Elmer Bueno, together with the school’s Social Services Staff, Mrs. Tess Andres; Sponsorship Program Coordinator, Mrs. Rowena Dela Cruz; and the writer, visited four historical churches in Manila: Sta. Cruz Church, Binondo Church, Manila Cathedral, and San Agustin Church.

Each visit began with a pilgrimage prayer, after which Mr. Bueno spoke about the history of the church and explained details about the Holy Eucharist. The group had the chance to attend mass at the Manila Metropolitan Cathedral in Intramuros.

The longest part of the tour was at San Agustin Church which has a museum as well. The variety of the exhibits, the vastness of the church compound, and the labyrinthine paths added to the awe and the excitement felt by everyone.

The activity had been a plan of the Campus Ministry for some time before it finally saw fruition this year. Hopefully, another pilgrimage will push through next year as this is a very enriching, edifying, and enlightening experience, enabling the ERDAnians to become more grateful and committed in their work for the Lord.