“My Passion, My Success”, a youth empowerment seminar, was held at the SAFAD Theater last September 26. This event was organized by the members of IPI, and sponsored by different agencies and companies. It aims to help the youth realize their dreams through the inspiring stories of the speakers and how they managed to achieve such success in their respective careers.

The event started with an opening prayer and the national anthem, followed by the host, Clarence Lim’s welcoming address. He also emphasized that the event aims to help the youth realize their self-actualization in order to pursue their careers in the future. Jonathan Po, one of the organizers gave his own opening remarks as well, advising the youth to take the event as life lessons.

Afterwards, an audio-video presentation by Life Project 4 Youth (LP4Y) was displayed. Gerald Misa, one of the members of LP4Y, gave his speech about his life and how LP4Y changed his lifestyle. He also spoke about how LP4Y was organized as a French NGO foundation whose aims are to work with those in need, help them learn not only in academics but also in professionalism, and guide them to become better citizens in the community.

The next part of the program was led by the first speaker of the event, Mr. Randy Cabahug. According to him, profession gives way to one’s vocation. He also stated that according to the University of Asia and the Pacific (UAP), 20 years from now, the family should have two to three children in the household. He then shared an experience from when he was ten years old, when he bought a gift for a boy whose age was from five to seven years of age. His defining moment was when he gave happiness to other people. In 1989, he was the youngest barangay captain in one of the barangays in Mandaue. In 2005, he was also the youngest district governor.

During his talk, he showed a video entitled “Kasambahay Habambuhay”, in which a grandfather named Lolo Nestor shared three rules for his grandson’s sports team to follow in order to achieve success. The first is to disconnect themselves to the online world in order to experience how it feels to be in the real world; second is reconnecting with the nature around them; and lastly, to love freely in what one does and everything else will follow.

Mr. Cabahug also stated that in order to succeed, one must follow the 3 T’s (time, talent and treasure) and the 3 F’s (faith, friends and family). He also compared life to a Rubik’s cube. According to him, “Life is a Rubik’s cube. It is very colorful. You can move the pieces in your life in order to land in the right place.”

The second speaker was David Jones Cua, also known as David Wilde by profession, once a business student. Later in his life, he became an editorial assistant, then a press relations officer during his stint in Manila. After years of hard work, he then went back to Cebu and became an editor-in-chief, then later a creative director, to which he brought the same working ethics he had when he was still in Manila.

After from being a creative director, he decided to become a musician. His talk then turned to his career as a musician, during which he experimented with incorporating his compositions with VisHop and VisPop. He then gave tips in order to become a successful person: have good work ethics, be unafraid if you want to contribute to your future, the “favor bank” which states that one must help his friends, to monetize and lastly, time management. After his talk, he performed his self-composed songs and a sample of Nicki Minaj’s “Anaconda” with the assistance of musician Z Jacob.

The third speaker was Mike Acebedo Lopez. During his talk, he defined success into three parts; knowing one’s core, what one is all about, and one’s dreams and aspirations. He explained about what the bucket list is and how his bucket list contribute to his successful career.  He shared the story of his writing an application to President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo for a position of assistant secretary. Lopez was also the youngest awardee of the “Most Outstanding Alumni” award, despite his unemployment at the time. He was also awarded “Columnist of the Year” by Globe. Because of the success he earned over the years, he even has his own talk show “Open Mike”—his first guest was Sen. Grace Poe. Lopez then used a quote from the popular television series Gossip Girl: “Getting started. Do so with a clear vision of what you want to do, where see yourself.” He then continued, “Come up with your own brand of leadership and life model. There’s no perfect mold to success, no ‘one size fits all’ formula to life.”

The fourth and final speaker was Ms. Kryz Uy, a lifestyle blogger. She was once an Information Technology student by her parents’ choice before following her dream of becoming a lifestyle blogger. She then discussed about fashion blogging and how she got her start, as well as the opportunities she received after she became a successful fashion blogger. Afterwards, a question and answer portion took place which also provided information to the audience on how to attain such success as that of the speakers.

Despite the speakers’ differences in experiences in life, one thing united them all: their passion to get to where they are today. Their drive was infectious, and left no doubt that success truly starts from within us.

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