I remember once in an international youth activity in Samarinda wherein one of my Indonesian sister dearests asked me why beauty pageants are so popular in the Philippines. I was seriously stumped by the question, and I really wish I had a better answer to that than, “It’s because we are so beautiful.”. Sometimes I really do wonder why. It’s not like all Filipinos are towering statues sent by the heavens to spread beauty to the world. It’s not all about the celebrity culture either, because these pageant ladies are the real deal. The unity of beauty and brains is taken to a whole new level, and it’s a level worth paying great attention to; with that being said, I believe that the very essence of the popularity of beauty pageants in the Philippines stems from having a good example to look up to.

My school, Centro Escolar Univeristy, has this annual pageant, Mr. & Miss CEU. I hate to brag, but almost every year, at least one contestant from the School of Dentistry bag a title (or two). In 2010, Jeselle Vyne Vinoya bagged the Miss CEU 2010 title. 2012 gave the prestigious title to Chloe Ann Joy Miranda. 2013 was another awesome year, as Barbara Leigh Ignacio bagged the Miss CEU 2013 First Runner-Up title. Truly, it has, and will always be an honor to be friends with ladies of inner and outer beauty. I have always been proud to witness the embodiment of grace and intelligence in these ladies.

This year, I’m proud to say that I have a friend competing in the pageant again. This is none other than Kristel Guelos. I first met her in 2008, as we were classmates in one of our Pre-Dent subjects. I was really stuck by her beauty, from the first time I saw her. Of course, time has been good to her, as she has seemingly getting more and more beautiful as the years went by. Her name may ring a few bells here and there, because she has already competed in one of the country’s major pageants, as she represented Tanauan City in the 2013 Miss Earth Philippines pageant.

Let me tell you about Kristel. She’s a very warm, loving and grounded person. She relates well with pretty much everyone. It’s really easy to grow fond of someone who can be well-described as a burst of warm sunshine that can brighten up anyone’s day. She epitomizes values expected of a God-loving individual, which include kindness, humanism, and concern for the common good. Of course I’d love to go on and on about Kristel, but sometimes actually getting to know the person is far better than counting on words alone.

I really hope that CANDIDATE #10, Kristel Guelos, School of Dentistry takes home the title of MISS CEU 2014.

There may never be enough words to describe how much I would love her to win, but sometimes, all we have to say is that when your queen stands right there in front of you, there won’t be any room for doubts. You would just know.:)

Oh, by the way, there will be an ONLINE VOTING, as a segment of the pageant. This is not limited to CEU students.
I strongly encourage all those who can read this to vote for Kristel Guelos by first hitting “LIKE“, on the CEU University Student Council Manila Facebook Page, and finding the photo of CANDIDATE #10 Kristel Guelos, and then hitting “LIKE” on that as well.



I can’t believe it. I have to go back to school in four days!
In my head, I’m like, “Nooooooooooo..

It’s not that I don’t like Dentistry, because I really do. I just don’t like that my school environment is so crowded. The city’s crowded, the school’s crowded, the clinics are crowded. It drives me to a point of negativity, frankly.

Whenever I get my cards read, I’m always told that my destiny is not in the Philippines. Had I known that earlier, would I have chosen to stay? Sometimes I wonder what could have been if I had been more driven, if I had been more gutsy, if I had been more confident. Hmm. There would have been more options, and those options may or may not have included USF, UCLA, and NYU. If I had been a different version of me, my life would have turned out really differently.. and oh yeah, I would’ve been 40lbs heavier.

It’s really tough being a Dentistry student in the Philippines. Unlike schools elsewhere, we have to shell out a lot of money from our own pockets– buy the medicaments, feed the patient (seriously), give the patient fare money (even more seriously), and give the patient “bribe” money so that he’ll come back (okay, I can not get any more serious). In all fairness, it’s totally cheap to study Dentistry in the Philippines.

The up side to all this is that:: 1.) We get familiarized with brands, and we get to explore them on our own, 2.) We get glimpses of what the real world is like, along with the good, and the bad, and 3.) Okay, let me get back at you when I actually think of something “philosophical”.

All the crowdedness has made me develop massive social anxiety. That’s definitely not something I want to carry over to 2014. I don’t mean to exaggerate, but somehow the stressful environment has driven me to lose touch with myself. As much as I wanted to be “balanced” for the entirety of my Dentistry life, I just snapped.– now this is the secret life of some random Dentistry student. I can’t just smile all day and pretend that nothing’s bugging me, because, really, there is. I can’t not be real with Dentistry, because I love it too much.. and being fake isn’t love at all, now is it?