‘Asian Apprentice’ says success requires hard work, perseverance | Inquirer News

‘Asian Apprentice’ says success requires hard work, perseverance

/ 09:41 PM November 04, 2013

YABUT, in his “sweet and short message,” tells MFI graduates they have to believe they can overcome obstacles.

Thomas Edison described genius as “1 percent inspiration and 99 percent perspiration,” but for Jonathan Allen Yabut, the prolific American inventor could very well have been describing success.

Yabut, new chief of staff of Air Asia after becoming the first winner of “The Apprentice Asia” television show, said success depended mostly on the “unwavering belief that whatever the obstacle is in your life, you are going to get through it and you are going to succeed.”


He told the 212 graduates of MFI Foundation Inc.’s Technological Institute and Farm Business Institute that a worldwide study had proven that success had not much to do with intelligence quotient, good looks, good health or rich parents.


Yabut was guest speaker during the MFI schools’ recent commencement exercises in Camp General Aguinaldo in Quezon City.

“Passion combined with perseverance over a long period of time is the secret to success,” said the 27-year-old economics graduate of the University of the Philippines.

Yabut summarized his recipe for success in one word, “grit.”

He challenged the graduates, about 80 percent of whom were already employed, to find out what they wanted to do in life and stick to it for five to 10 years.

“You have to look for your own source of grit because this will push you to become successful,” he said.

But he warned that the road to success would not always be smooth.


Yabut said “not everyone will be given the opportunity to become what [he/she] wants or to follow [his/her] passion.”

Love what you do

While he encouraged them to “find out what your passion is,” he also advised them, “If that passion does not meet with what the world is offering you, then you have to find a way to love what you are doing.” At the end of the day, he said, it would be about “cultivating” one’s passion.

This meant, he explained, “doing things you have never done in your life: eating, reading and traveling.”

He said when he was doing all these things, he did not feel like it was an obligation because he loved what he did. He said he worked real hard to get to where he was now, although it took a while.

MFI Foundation Inc., celebrating its 40th year of providing quality technical and agricultural education in the Philippines, wanted the new graduates to share its own passion for excellence.

Trustee William Torres, in his message, said MFI, over the years, had “responded to the challenges of times, like a candlelight in the darkness, by endeavoring to uplift a number of Filipino families through technical training for their kids.”

MFI started as a grants-giving foundation. As a learning institution now, it has two institutes that offer postsecondary nondegree education to equip students with technical, agricultural and agro-entrepreneurial skills.

MFI Technological Institute, established in 1983, provides technical education to the less privileged youth while addressing the shortage of skilled manpower in the country.

MFI Farm Business Institute primarily aims to hone the skills and knowledge of the next generation of Filipino agricultural entrepreneurs and farm owners.

During the commencement exercises, recognition was given not only  to students for their hard work but also to parents who attended MFI training and conferences on industry trends and skills demands.

Most graduates were supported by numerous sponsors and institutional donors.

Poverty not a hindrance

Yabut encouraged the graduates to pursue their goals, telling them, “Poverty is never a barrier for you to succeed in life.” He said his own family struggled to send him to good schools.

“I had a ‘baon’ of only P35 every day that I [used for] fare, snacks and lunch. Sometimes, I skipped meals for two days to buy what I wanted or to watch a movie,” he added.

YABUT and MFI president Alejandro T. Escaño (at Yabut’s right) with the new graduates

Yabut said he had to prove that “you can never be too small to dream big.”

The young graduates, he pointed out, had the opportunity to achieve what they wanted in life.

“Make the most of it. Grab every opportunity and enjoy while you still can because, five years from now, everything is going to get serious. If you think school is tough, real life is way harder,” Yabut told his audience.

He told the graduates, “I know it was not easy to get here and the journey is just starting for all of you.”

In her valedictory address, Czarina Gem B. Falcon, an electronics technician, recalled the hardships she and her classmates went through to learn how to become “employable and successful.”

She said, “We were given the opportunity to study and do well in life. Now is our chance to pay it forward.”

Falcon said learning was just the beginning for them. “Each of us must have the proper work attitude and ethics to complement our technical training.”

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.

The holistic education approach of MFI, Falcon said, would be their key to develop the right attitude at work.

TAGS: Education, Hard work, Learning, perseverance, success

© Copyright 1997-2024 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.