Helping Marawi folk is priority for social work board topnotcher
DAVAO CITY—Tawi-Tawi native Paramisuli Aming witnessed how the conflict in Marawi City started in May.
Aming, a graduate of Mindanao State University (MSU) who topped this year’s social workers licensure examination, said she continued studying in her dormitory even as she heard gunfire and saw burning buildings from the distance on the night of May 23 as terrorists attacked Marawi.
Helping the displaced residents of Marawi remains on Aming’s priorities.
“Marawi is [my] priority right now,” said the 21-year-old Aming, who led the almost 4,000 passers with an 86-percent rating.
Aming took the board exam in Cagayan de Oro City on July 27 and 28.
“There’s a sense that I have to live up to this title of being a topnotcher. That is my biggest challenge—how to most effectively apply the knowledge we learned into practice,” she said.
Aming said she was happy for her MSU batch mates who also passed the board because it had not been easy for most of them to even take the examination.
“Some of them had to fight their parents just to go back to Iligan City to continue the review classes and then to take the board,” she said. “A few of my batch mates actually decided to take the board next year because of fears for their safety in Iligan [due to] bomb threats.”
Aming, Suli to family and friends, chose to stay in the MSU dorm on the first night of the fighting.
Her older sister, Dayanara, recalled telling her not to sleep that night and stay alert.
“She told me she really wasn’t planning to sleep [that night] as she was studying,” Dayanara said.
The following day, Aming left Marawi with her landlady and classmates. She spent a few days in Cotabato City but returned to Iligan in time for their graduation on July 13.
Aming received her social work degree, magna cum laude, in a ceremony in Iligan, the first held outside MSU’s main campus in Marawi in its 56-year history.
“It feels great to be able to achieve a goal that I have set for myself,” she said. “It feels so satisfying that after all the uncertainty brought about by the current circumstances— lack of time, stress and other factors—I was able to make it,” she told the Inquirer.
“What’s really touching is the feeling that I was able to uplift the spirits of MSU, Marawi and, dare I say, the Moro people even for a bit,” she added.
“It feels good to bring something positive to the people, especially the victims [of this conflict],” she said.
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