SUCCESS STORY: Civil engineering board exam topnotcher who hates Math

by KC Cordero
Nov 18, 2021
Sirven Carandang Garibay graduation photo, at right is holding a dog
Babala ni Sirven Carandang Garibay na mahirap talaga ang board exam. Kaya payo niya, “Engineering courses are notorious for being difficult... it is very important that you are doing what you love.”

Naging topnotcher si Sirven Carandang Garibay sa November 2016 Civil Engineering Board Exam.

Ang score niya ay 93.20.

Produkto siya ng University of the Philippines Los Baños, at nagtapos bilang magna cum laude.

Sirven Carandang Garibay graduation photo

Kung pagbabatayan ang kanyang tagumpay, hindi aakalaing hate na hate niya ang mathematics—na masasabing importanteng subject sa civil-engineering course.

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Sa panayam sa kanya ng online magazine ng engineering community na GineersNow.com noong 2020, sinabi ni Sirven na noong bata pa siya, ang talagang pangarap niya ay maging doktor.

Habang lumalaki, na-realize niya na ang kanyang passion ay nasa engineering.

Isang close friend niya noong high school ang nagkuwento sa kanya na gustung-gusto nitong maging civil engineer kaya nagkainteres din siya.

Pagbabahagi pa niya, “Another reason for me to take engineering is to continue what my father was not able to do due to the circumstances in his time.

“He was an undergraduate student of mechanical engineering when he needed to stop studying.”

HATE NIYA ANG MATH SUBJECTS

Aminado si Sirven na mahihirap ang engineering subjects, pero paborito niya ang structural design.

Aniya, “This may be known as the hardest field in civil engineering but maybe the reason that I had a liking for it is because since I was a kid, when people mention engineer, I immediately thought of persons who design and build buildings.”

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Pinakaayaw naman niya ang mathematics, pero paglilinaw niya, “I only despised math, but that does not mean I am terrible at it.”

MAHILIG SIYANG MAG-CRAM

Aminado rin si Sirven na isa siyang “average crammer” noong nag-aaral pa.

“My study habits are really not something to be proud of. I study only at early mornings of examination days.

“You can say that I am your average crammer. But everything worked out just fine for me.”

Sirven Carandang Garibay as an engineering student

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Hindi aniya epektibo para sa kanya ang pagre-review sa gabi dahil pagod na ang katawan at isip niya sa mga naging aktibidad sa araw.

Kailangan raw makatulog siya nang medyo mahaba.

“When I say long nap, I mean those complete hours of sleep every day. My methods may not work with everyone, but it is something worth trying.”

NAHIRAPAN SA BOARD EXAM

Pero naging struggle ni Sirven sa pagre-review para sa board exam ang pagiging crammer.

“I kind of regret this happening, and I felt that I could have done better. This made me study really hard a few weeks before the exam.”

Dahil pangarap niyang makasama sa Top 10, umiwas siya sa mga distractions.

Nag-enroll din siya sa review center. Gayunpaman, bago ang board exam, pakiramdam niya ay hindi pa siya handa.

Mahirap din aniya ang naging pagsusulit dahil bukod sa limitado ang oras, karamihan sa mga tanong ay noon lang niya na-encounter.

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“And besides, it has math in it. As I mentioned before, I did not like it in the first place.”

HINDI INAKALANG MAGIGING TOP 1

Dahil sa hirap ng exam, hindi inakala ni Sirven na siya ang magiging topnotcher o kahit anga makasama sa top 10.

“I knew that there are other examinees which could have done a better job. The exam was so difficult that I only wished, at that time, that my efforts were enough to pass.”

Nalaman niyang siya ang topnotcher nang i-tag siya Facebook post ng kanyang naging adviser sa UPLB.

“I looked immediately in the PRC online site to confirm this. There were a few seconds of silence and finally, I shouted, ‘Thank you, Lord!’”

Agad din niyang pinuntahan ang natutulog niyang parents at binulungan ng, “Top 1 ako.”

Nagpunta sila sa kanyang kuwarto at umiiyak na nagyakapan.

Bulalas ni Sirven, “It was a very surreal moment for me. I never thought of achieving a feat like this.”

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Sa Diyos, sa kanyang parents at girlfriend inihandog nito ang kanyang tagumpay.

“First and foremost, I owe my success to God. He was always the one that I go to and I know that He was always with me in that journey, guiding me."

Pinasalamatan rin niya ang mga magulang.

“Next are my parents. They were very supportive and believed that I can top the exam even more than I believed in myself."

Sirven Carandang Garibay holding a dog

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Sa ngayon ay connected si Sirven sa Makati Development Corporation bilang Structural Design Engineer.

Payo niya sa mga engineering students, “Engineering courses are notorious for being difficult, but let it become your passion and you will never feel the same way ever again.

“Therefore, it is very important that you are doing what you love.”

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Babala ni Sirven Carandang Garibay na mahirap talaga ang board exam. Kaya payo niya, “Engineering courses are notorious for being difficult... it is very important that you are doing what you love.”
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