Modern Filipina– Redefining Success: Empowering Women Through Education

? Images from Cristina Malaborbor

What is teaching like during the new normal?

A teacher, a professional, and a mother by heart. A woman handled a drastic change in providing knowledge to her children- her students. 

How does our second mother dauntlessly cope up with the changes she encountered in this phenomenon? 

Students are often subjective about how they feel regarding their experiences in the online class, and absent-mindedly forget that we are all dealing with difficulties during this pandemic. Today, let’s look up the experiences of our second parent– the person we virtually meet every day. 

Dig in more and discover how she deals with the change to sustain the needs of her students…

Cristina Malaborbor is a single independent woman in her 50s who works in the financial department of a multi-company such as San Miguel Corporation and other semiconductor manufacturers and a part-time university professor at Pamantasan ng Cabuyao. She’d never had a kid, but she understands how to dedicate herself to her students. Being a mother begins with the heart, not with the birth of a biological kid.

We all walked on the rocks when the pandemic struck, much like Ms. Cristina, who experienced her challenges, notably as a professor. She makes adjustments to study the new typical set-up more thoroughly. Being aware of the new-normal schooling process was a significant challenge since it involved learning and growth, technology, and training. She worked with the university and government programs to expedite the rebuilding. “We need to put in a lot of time and effort to expand and enhance our teaching techniques,” she explained.

Even though this arrangement has been in place for almost two years, she is still adjusting to it; continual learning and dedication motivate her to continue teaching in this new normal. Even though she is getting a bit older, she continually strives for constant growth to give her students inspiration and academic learning.

When asked who she sought help and support from when she was having difficulties during the pandemic, she answered herself without a sense of hesitation. Ms. Malaborbor sees herself as someone she can rely on when things get tough.  “I am the only one who can help myself.” — she said. But of course, others also extended their support to Ms. Malaborbor. The university, the college department where she teaches, and other institutions provided webinars and seminars for her and co-professors to keep up with the current events and to gain knowledge with regards to the methods of teaching online. She attended numerous seminars where she can improve her ways of teaching and gain a better understanding of the current educational system and the new normal. 

Help starts with Ms. Malaborbor herself. Because for her, she will be the one to decide whether she wants to attend those seminars, wants to develop her skills, and wants to seek assistance from others. It is essential to choose how to deal with difficulties. It truly begins with ourselves; our responsibility is to take a step forward, so we’re not devoured by our challenges.

Ms. Cristina’s students are blessed to have her as their professor, especially in this circumstance. Though, she is also struggling to cope, she wants her student to stay motivated and learn things despite the challenging condition that we are all in. One of the most rewarding aspects of her job as a professor is knowing that she inspires something in her students through educating, coaching, and guiding.

The advice she can impart to her colleagues is that they should share the best advice to help the new educators. Those teachers who are teaching for many years are very experienced, so they can share their things with new educators to empower and give them confidence. Teachers should empathize with their students and be flexible because of the new learning set ups, work from home. As teachers, they should understand their role in students’ lives. 

‘’Hindi lang naman tayo as a faculty who is teaching these theories, but we have to empathize with the students sometimes and we have to manage to teach firmly. As a teacher, we are confident but we can also ask for help and learn from our mistakes. That’s the thing, we are not perfect so we can ask for help.’’

She advises all students to work with the professors and faculty since they, too, have limits. With many students in a class, it is impossible to resolve difficulties individually– a collaboration with their professors or faculty members is required. They should also be committed to learning more because the professor is working hard to pass on their knowledge– do your part, Hooman! “Students and instructors should collaborate. They should work together to ensure that both parties gain,” she added.

In collaboration with: Vina Alcasabas, Jam Meñoza, and Evon Barrameda

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