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November 16, 2020

by April Ann Brillantes

AISAT’s 9th Foundation Anniversary entitled “AISATAGUMPAY” was celebrated differently this year due to the restrictions of COVID-19. This year’s celebration was held online via Google Meet and Facebook Live. This was joined by faculty, staff, and students.

The short program was hosted by the Master of Ceremonies, Justin John Dulogin, and Roseller Nolasco, and the host for the awarding, Jon Lorence Panelo. With special speakers Atty. Myra Ann W. Toe Hio, the school president, Matty Joey B. Torres, the school administrator, and the speaker for the segment AISAT THEN, Engr. Aida M. Rosales, the Academic Head the speaker for the segment AISAT NOW, and lastly,  Maria Corazon B. Masbad, the Basic Education Department principal and speaker for AISAT in the FUTURE. 

The celebration started with an introduction of the origins of the school followed by a campus tour of AISAT. Preliminaries then proceeded with an opening prayer, the singing of the National Anthem, AISAT’s school hymn, and the praise and worship.

It was then followed by the virtual speech of the school president, Atty. Myra Ann W.  Toe Hio. Here’s the transcript of her speech:

“Today we celebrate the 9th anniversary of AISAT. AISAT TAGUMPAY.For me, any celebration that doesn’t center on giving thanks and glory to God is no celebration at all, so my focus is on how gracious God has been to AISAT. I am not saying that the efforts of everyone in AISAT don’t count, it does. In fact, without everyone’s cooperation, we would not be here today. And you are part of God’s blessing to AISAT.

  • To the Academic Head, Program heads, Program committee members, faculty, both lecture and lab faculty, research, basic ed, JC department and faculty thereof,
  • To the administrator, quality, registrar’s office, accounting personnel, HR, OSA offices – (guidance, librarian, clinic), placement, admissions, property custodians, assistants, procurement office, lab in charge, maintenance, security,
  • And everyone else in the staff and faculty that I have not mentioned;
  • To the Supreme student council and to the students;

Welcome to today’s Foundation day and let me here say my thank you to you for your part in making AISAT celebrate its 9th anniversary. Yes, we have said our opening prayer and that was good but I want and need to say more. Because there would be no AISAT without God’s blessing – for everything happens according to His will and control. Moreover, there would be no reason for AISAT to exist without being under God’s blessing. So today, we give God all the glory for allowing us to celebrate the 9th anniversary of AISAT. I have been thinking for several days of this message, I really wanted to say something positive today – because we all need encouragement. We are all worried about the future. When will the pandemic end? What is the future of the aviation industry? And I am thankful 2 days ago we hear that Pfizer has a drug that is on 3rd stage of trial and should be available by early next year. Even the timing of this news fits our anniversary, thank God indeed! But let me share with you something that I have been relying on these days, found in Deuteronomy 29:29. It really encourages me and I hope it does the same to you.

Deuteronomy 29:29

The secret things belong to the Lord our God. But the things revealed belong to us…. and to our children forever that we may follow all the words of this law.

There are two things stated here, the secret things and things revealed. When will the Covid pandemic be over? – this belongs to the secret things. Will I catch Covid? – this belongs to the secret things. Will I be sick, when will I die, what happens to AISAT in 10 years – these belong to the secret things. If these are secret, I am not meant to know the answer to them. So, I can’t say for certain when things will turn around. I say when because good judgment tells me things will turn around, even the aviation industry.  The question is when. All secret things however are under the full control of God, so it is ok, why? Because we have a loving, gracious, merciful God. This is the God who is revealed in the bible.

And what are the revealed things? There are 2 types of revealed things. The first is what we are to do and how we are to behave, such as Love one another as I have loved you. And I have seen that in teachers, who have almost overnight become YouTubers and tech experts to deliver virtual classes and lessons. They have adjusted when they realized that putting too much expectation on you isn’t helpful. They have kept on being motivated during the online classes. Believe me, teachers need motivation too! I have also seen how students have adapted to the new normal and have participated in classes and online activities, and this is your expression of love to one another.

(I) encourage all of us to follow the laws set out for us, let us be kind to one another. Students, attend classes, and give motivation to your teachers. We can’t make virtual attendance compulsory because some students cannot connect, but for those who can, join the classes. Don’t plagiarize. your teachers put a lot of effort into the lessons, but you disregard it when you plagiarize. Respect your parents – it is hard for them now. Show them kindness. Don’t be mean to your parents, it is never your right to be mean to your parents. These are the things revealed – how we are to behave. Another thing that is revealed is the Gospel of Christ. The death of Christ on the cross saves us because through it those who believe in Jesus are declared right. While we are still sinners, but we are declared right through Christ. How can Jesus do this? Because Jesus paid for our sins. Christians are sinners who have repented and accepted the salvation and Lordship of Christ in their(our) lives. Salvation is by God’s grace through faith – this is the essence of salvation.

Why do I focus on these things? Because these are the revealed things and in these I focus on. It gives us a firm foundation. It gives me hope. For the hidden things, they belong to God.

Thank you and indeed to God be the glory.”

Consequently, the school administrator,  Mr. Matty Joey B. Torres gave his speech about AISAT in its emerging years. Here’s the transcript for his part:

“Good morning everyone. Today, we celebrate AISAT’s 9th founding anniversary with the theme “AISAT THEN, NOW AND THE FUTURE.” I am happy that I was given a chance to reflect not only on the beginning of AISAT and how it started but also on the significant development since the college’s inception. I remember when AISAT started its first year of operation, only 165 students enrolled, 3 sections for the 2-year Aircraft Maintenance Technology and 2 sections from the 2-year Aviation Electronics Technology. AISAT had about 20 employees at that time, with 1 faculty room, 1 office for the administration & staff, and only 8 operational classrooms. In AISAT’s second year of operation, from 165 students, we had a total of 273 students. It is hard to believe how fast AISAT grew.

In 2014, AISAT expanded by opening TESDA courses, the Hotel and Restaurant Services; then Diploma in Digital Arts in 2016. AISAT did not stop there. In 2016, AISAT opened degree courses, the Bachelor of Science in Aircraft Maintenance Technology, Bachelor of Science in Aviation Electronics Technology and Bachelor of Science in Entertainment and Multimedia Computing and then the Senior High Program under DepEd.

I witnessed how AISAT grew and developed, from 165 students in 2013 to 835 now. From about 20 employees to more than 80 employees, from 8 operational classrooms before, to more than 30  today. Aside from the growing number of students, employees, classrooms, and laboratories, AISAT has also become popular outside Davao City. Witnessing those achievements from the start, I will not be surprised if AISAT will become a University someday. Thank you and God bless us all.”

Lastly, the Academic Head of AISAT, Engr. Aida M. Rosales, concluded the formal part of the program with her own speech for AISAT in the present. She goes:

“Good morning everyone! It’s a blessing to celebrate the 9th Founding Anniversary of Asian International School of Aeronautics and Technology with all of you. Despite the time of uncertainty because of this pandemic, AISAT is still standing tall amidst the challenges of time.

First, allow me to greet our ever energetic and supportive School President in the person of Atty. Myra Ann Wee Toe-Hio, our school administrator Mr. Matty Joey Torres, all our department Heads, faculty and staff, students, friends, and parents as well, a happy celebration of the 9th Founding Anniversary of AISAT 2020.

Our theme for this momentous event is AISAT THEN, NOW, AND THE FUTURE. Let me focus on “AISAT NOW”. From its humble beginnings, AISAT started way back in November of 2011 and is still going strong this year 2020. It is 9 years in existence, leading the aviation programs in the academe. The AISAT NOW is facing the biggest challenges in this time of pandemic where the delivery of instruction is through the use of Technology. It was so timely that AISAT was readily aligned to the shift of the mode of teaching which is online and eventually mandated by our government. It was a vision foreseen by our School President that AISAT must be ready to provide the necessary regiments for both the faculty and students together with the support group, our staff. These regiments are subject to order, clarity, and control for the sake of regulation. Other than that, AISAT NOW is on helping mode. AISAT listens and AISAT cares. Students have these services named REVUP by our campus ministry where their spiritual concerns are being addressed and just lately the POWWOW week gave AISAT the opportunity to reach out to our students showing that we do care and listen to you—not just in terms of the academic aspect but also about your well-being. Our Guidance Office led by our enthusiastic Maria Cecilia Santander extends its services through conducting related webinars that can contribute to the understanding of our students in finding one’s purpose in life and reconciling their inner struggles and personal challenges with the real world. It is this Office (Guidance) you can count on where confidentiality is guaranteed and trusted. Meanwhile, the Office of Students’ Affairs, being managed by our proactive Officer Dwight Quino, has challenged our students to showcase their talents in arts and music in a virtual setting for them to keep going, mentally and physically.

I commend all our frontline teaching staff because through the years they never settle for less in their teaching. They always aim for the best they can be. You are the very reason behind the existence of AISAT and the driving force of its continued growth, ensuring that AISAT stands tall and strong no matter what challenges may lie ahead. Then came a new member of the AISAT Family, the Basic Education, which is headed by Maria Corazon Masbad as the Principal. Recently, they spearheaded the initiative to promote Kids School On Air (KSOA)—an informal early childhood education program that can be heard over the airwaves at 102.7 Mango Radio from Monday through Saturday at 9-10 am. Everyone is invited to listen to KSOA. It is informative and very refreshing. Listen to its ABC for salvation.

Thank you to our dynamic staff being headed by our ever-reliable School Administrator, Matty Joey Torres, for their unparalleled service. All of these were made possible because behind AISAT NOW is a woman who dedicated AISAT to God, Atty. Myra Ann Wee Toe-Hio. (Let’s give her a big round of applause). (Pause) With God’s grace and the commitment of all Faculty and staff, AISAT will surely continue to flourish.

My heartfelt congratulations! God bless us all. Thank you.”

The short program then continued with a  raffle draw, where handpicked students who commented #AISATagumpay on  Google Meet and Facebook got the chance to win a brand new headphone as they answered the questions given by the hosts correctly. Afterward, the awarding was held for the participants who joined the AISATAGUMPAY Stories, Picture Perfect, and the Gratitude Wall. Lastly, the celebration ended with a prayer.

The short program was successful with the help of the Supreme Student Council (SSC), some students who wholeheartedly helped, and their ever guiding head, the head of student affairs, Mr. Dwight Dave Quiño.