IT IS VERY UNUSUAL to celebrate the annual observation of Civil Service Commission (CSC) Month with a heart-wrenching sharing of real-life battle stories of COVID survivors.

And for employees like Mr. John F. Quinto, Engr. Lina Cancino and Mr. Mike Arquillano, their eye-opening, first-hand experiences with COVID will give hopes for people to get through with the adverse effects of the disease. 

This September 27, the Pangasinan State University- Lingayen Campus underlined the CSC celebration with a tribute to COVID Frontliners and Survivors who serve as modern-day heroes of today’s health crisis. 

“We know how this pandemic hits everyone from our health to our everyday living, so it is just to give honor to our frontliners and also to survivors who are inspiration of strength and  courage,” said Dr. Lorna G. Urbiztondo.

Campus Supply Officer and a survivor, Mr. John Quinto, told the participants that he had a long and difficult battle with the disease.

Even healthy and active, he fought relentlessly, in mind and body, with COVID especially when he knew that he was not just the one who was infected but also the other members of their family.

Same experience with Engr. Cancino who tested positive in late August after waking up with high fever and cough. 

“Nakakapangamba isipin iyong sakit lalo na dahil sa mga balita”, as shared by the Natural Department Chairperson.

While on home quarantine, she kept on praying because she know that she still have a mission in life.

Though very emotional, she testified that messages from her colleagues gave strength and hope during her battle. 

“Very helpful po iyong mga messages na natatanggap ko galing sa inyo(colleagues) kasi nagpalakas ito ng loob ko at nakikita ko na marami parang nagmamahal sa akin,” she added.

Even currently hospitalized, Mr. Mike Arquillano shared how he is combating the disease. He shared that hearing in real-time his co-workers sharing their survival stories, keeps his heart grows and hopes to eliminate the virus in his body.

These stories of hopes do not just entail testimony of resiliency but a wake up call to everyone to improve lifestyle to prevent the spread of the disease. 

So far, it’s been around two years since the pandemic engulfed the whole country and still affecting many lives and the economy. 

Since the start, the school frontliners which include the security personnel, utility workers, admission, registrar and accounting staff, medical and dental staff, and some faculty members, have been committed to perform their services in the midst of the outbreak.

Giving their utmost dedication, the institution has become undettered by the crisis in providing same-high quality standards for clienteles.

“While they are putting their own health, families, and most importantly their own lives at risk, the least thing that the campus can do is to appreciate their efforts and cooperate by following health and safety guidelines,” the Executive Director added.

For that, as CSC introduced honing of future-ready servant heroes through this year’s theme, the campus set the day to honor their sacrifices and efforts. 

Fifty four personnel were given certificates of appreciation during the virtual activity for their invaluable services as fronliners.

Moreover, three employees namely, Mr. Peter Dangla Cruz, Mr. Solomon Ulanday and Mrs. Fladiza Castillo, were given posthumous award to pay tribute with their contributions in the university.

During a video presentation of their memories in the university, the campus was in flood of tears after reminiscing their happiest times as co-workers.

Engr. Juanito Maneclang, Dr. Francis Lazo and Ms. Sunshine Umayam gave short messages to remember their late colleagues. 

In conclusion of the celebration, a ZoomBa activity spearheaded by the by the PE and NSTP Unit was organized to promote physical wellness and strength. /mmpd