Graduate School Students’ Organization (GRASSO) of Cebu Normal University (CNU) initiated its first virtual GRASSO Day in the new normal last December 5, 2020 via Facebook live.

With the theme, “GRASSO Day 2020: An Introspection of Phyical and Mental Awareness in the New Normal”, GRASSO aimed to continue the yearly-celebrated event, despite the tolls caused by the pandemic.

In his welcoming remarks, Hon. Angelito Cabanilla, GRASSO President, shared that this year’s event focused more on graduate students’ mental health, whereas the past year was centered on physical activities.

“The Graduate School Students’ Organization believes that this is the right time for us to conduct the activity that could raise mental awareness to students who are having immense stresses,” said Cabanilla.

Several administrative officials also gave encouraging words to students; among them were CNU President Dr. Filomena Dayagbil; Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Daisy Palompon; Vice President for Research, Extension, and Publication Dr. Angeline Pogoy; Vice President for Administration Dr. Floriza Laplap; Dean of Office of Student Affairs Dr. Gwendelina Villarante; Dean of College of Teacher Education Dr. Ethel Abao; Dean of College of Nursing Dr. Emiliano Ian Suson II; and, Dean of College of Arts and Sciences Dr. Milagros Greif.

The lecture proper kicked off with Ms. Marianne Taladua MA, RPSY, providing a detailed discussion about mental health.

Taladua explained the significance of mental health as it is associated to someone’s capacity of being productive in work, in relationships, and in contributions to the society.

Contest proper

To still liven the event, GRASSO hosted three contests participated by graduate students prior the event day.

For the first contest, graduate students showed their prowess in hammering words through essay writing contest.

Ms. Marjorey Cabigas (DA Literature and Communication) placed first with her piece “A Quarantine’s Soliloquy”; while Ms. Pythia Monique del Mar’s (MaEd English Language Teaching) “Once Upon a Quarantine” and Ms. Rensel Mae Barbado’s (MaEd Mathematics) “Self-Scrutiny in the New Normal” finished as second and third placers, respectively.

For techy students, a TikTok contest also took place where creativity through the use of music and videos were recorded.

Ms. Ethel Chrisia Cejano (MaEd Mathematics) earned the first spot with her “Simple Steps on How To Prevent COVID-19”; meanwhile Ms. Christy Canales (MaEd Mathematics) ended as second with her simulation of the “New Normal House-to-House Module Distribution”.

On the other hand, Spoken Poetry Contest hailed Ms. Christy Canales (MaEd Mathematics) as the winner, exuding her feelings and emotions virtually.

During the closing portion, GRASSO Adviser Dr. Catalina Canasa thanked the administration, officers, and all students who took part of the activity.

In addition, Canasa claimed with positivity that, “Lahat ng simula ay may wakas dahil walang forever. Kaya si COVID[-19] na ito, talagang walang forever ‘to. Darating ang araw, darating ang panahon na tayo ay mapupunta rin sa kung anuman ang mga pagbabagong nangyari sa ating buhay, patungo ito sa kaniyang kabutihan.”

Words by Mark Aleson Sanico