Recently I made a wonderful discovery about my dear Lola Epang. And I’d like to share it to my dear cousins, in the hope that by so doing, they’ll feel closer to her just like how I feel right now …
Currently, I have the privilege of working in the Academic Vice President’s Office of Xavier University as Asst to the AVP. In one of my discussions with the AVP Staff, out of nowhere I blurted out that I remember hearing from someone in the family that Lola used to teach in Xavier a long long time ago. Out of curiousity I asked Ms Belle if they still keep records of past teachers. She said yes and asked me more information about Lola. All the while it never occured to me she’ll pursue it. Well, after a few minutes, she came out of the storage area and showed me Lola’s file.
True to what I heard, Lola did teach in Xavier! and mind you, she did in June 1967, 6 months before my birth. And I also found out she was the Chairman of the Rank and Promotions Committee. I also found her school records, and lo and behold, I found out she had an MA from Manuel L. Quezon in Manila. She even wrote a journal for Philippine Normal College in Manila for her Thesis.
For someone like me struggling to finish my doctoral degree in education while teaching in college, her success is amazing! And come to think she did it when most women (that time) were probably not so much into developing careers. I was told she was the first professional from her hometown.
I felt a pang of loneliness for my lola. At that moment I felt so proud to be her grand daughter. I told my officemates how I felt and I asked if I could photocopy her records as a keepsake.
By the way, I discovered too that during that time, Lolo was a Cashier of Philippine National Bank, Corrales Branch here in Cagayan de Oro City. That too is a great feat for someone who ran away from his home when he was a boy, and who ended up here in Cagayan de Oro as a pulot boy at Nazareth’s tennis court.
Reflecting on my own career path, I am glad I am following Lola’s path, although this was not intentional. She was into Home Economics as an Educator while I am into Business Management.
I am proud to have been a product of one good educated lady, Lola Epang. And I love her dearly. I hope I am making her proud of who I am now, of what I have become, and by who I will be!