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A board topnotcher’s earnest dreams for agriculture in PH

Among some 11,673 examinees, 4,035 passers and 29 topnotchers during the Licensure Examination for Agriculturists in November, Kathleen Faye Millare from the Ilocos Sur Polytechnic State College (ISPSC) emerged as top three with a score of 86.17 percent.
 
As a magna cum laude of her batch, who graduated in August 2022, she carried massive pressure from people’s expectations of her.
 
She shared that she was often told of how it should be natural for her to pass the exam bearing a latin honor.

With this, she decided to cut off all communication including social media, and step back from interactions while she was reviewing.
 
“I joined the Carl Balita Review Center, while I was also reading books on my own will. I followed a set time in a day I allotted for reviewing, I did not allow myself to veer away and lose focus,” she uttered, reminiscing how difficult it was to review.
 
She said that her family and friends were consistent in encouraging her to persist at times she thought of giving up.
 
She had three months to review and she was away from her home, all she held onto was her promise to her family that come December, they will not only celebrate passing the boards but even better, her as a topnotcher.

Eager to fulfill her word, and fueled by her own desire for excellence, she said, “There were days I gave myself time to rest, but I had a routine that if I slacked off for an hour, I should make up for it the next day.”
 
Kathleen said that growing up she always wanted to do well on her studies, her parents and family never demanded her to excel and only supported her own will to be an outstanding learner until now.
 
Her family hails from Barangay Lingtan in Bangued, Abra.
 
Having her internship at the Office of the Provincial Agriculture, she wondered why there were only few employees close to her age.
 
While contemplating on her course, her mother, Renel Millare, who was taking up her masteral degree in ISPSC at the time, suggested the Bachelor of Science in Agriculture program of the institution.
 
After days of thinking, she decided to take up the course and said she eventually found her passion for this science.

Now as she shares her journey, she also expresses her aspirations for the agriculture industry in the country, starting in Ilocos Sur and in her hometown.
 
“For those who are still deciding on what course to pursue, consider taking up agriculture because there are a lot of opportunities in this field. Do not think that you will just farm when you enroll in this course—you can learn tissue culture, invent new technology that can help our local farmers, work in offices or put up your own business,” she said.
 
She reiterated that the youth should not be discouraged when others belittle this career.
 
She strongly stated, “Agriculture is not only a way of life, we should look at the possibilities of it as an effective business. It can also raise our standards of living as long as we apply our knowledge, and eventually contribute in our country to become self-sufficient in food production.”
 

Her passion in helping the country attain such goals developed in her academic life at ISPSC where she said the educators helped them understand that their learnings should be a tool for them to contribute to the society.
 
“They told us that we should use what we learned to help the farmers to produce more food and attain self-sufficiency. I hope that since we are an agricultural country, we will not be importing agricultural produce from other countries, rather we should be the one exporting to them,” she said.
 
She said the possibilities for agriculture to progress are endless if the prior knowledge of our senior farmers and the advent of technology are both utilized.

With multiple job offers she is receiving, she wants to take her time and really tune in to what she really wants to pursue.
 
And as Kathleen continues to hope she can help modernize agriculture in the Philippines, she is currently preparing a feasibility study she will present to her former review center which offered to be her partner on a business she will put-up.
 
Agriculture is one of the country’s largest industries, and as a primary source of income, Kathleen’s fervent dreams for the field will serve the country in the years to come. (JCR/AMB/ATV/PIA Ilocos Sur)
 

About the Author

Aila Villanueva

Writer

Region 1

Aila T. Villanueva is an Information Officer I of the Philippine Information Agency Ilocos Sur Information Center based in the Heritage City of Vigan.

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