Wake Me Up When September Ends

I cannot believe I am composing my final learning blog for the semester. It only seemed like yesterday I was reading a new novel every single day–yes, that was how much time I had, coupled with my Insomnia, or something like it–then this semester started that felt like a tremendous blur of events, requirements, exercises, late-night group-chats and a tsunami of write-ups. I had 9 units worth of graduate courses, an internship programme, and a lot overthinking going on about my career plans. With all the tasks piling by the minute, but with some awesome times worth smiling for, this semester felt all too surreal.

Project PWP

DEVC 208, or distance learning in general, never fails to amaze me. Whenever I think about our group-chats on Facebook to plan and to design our online-based campaign, I still find myself totally amused as to how unconventional our set-up was–and yet it felt totally normal and natural.

On the first day of classes, my classmate, (Ate) Criselle left a message in my ‘class profile’ and asked if I already have a group. I replied ‘Yes’, but it also appeared that I have not gone through the course guide yet because the group she was referring to was different from the discussion group. Apparently, we have to form a group of 5-7 people to design an online-based social marketing plan and implement it! I just felt grateful she invited me the first time around, or else I might have ended up alone–even online.

One by one, the group came along. We are all ladies, hence the name Girl Power. During our first brainstorming session, we spent hours planning on a campaign that we thought was what was expected from us (about maternal healthcare and actually going to the communities to implement it). It was, again, a bad case of not reading instructions; but it was good that we have clarified the pointers first. After our chat sessions that seemed to go on forever, albeit having personal lives away from the computer (I don’t!), I won’t bore you with the details, Project PWP was born.

After creating the survey instrument, I had fun reading through our respondents’ answers. Since the survey is also administered online, I also received feedback from our respondents supporting our advocacy, and how they appreciate the campaign. We are on our fourth week into implementing Project PWP and I can say that it’s going pretty well. Implementing it is, surprisingly, influencing my own point-of-views about child discipline. I have always thought punishing kids when they throw tantrums was acceptable, after reading through the articles and the articles from our contributors, turns out children need a happy childhood to grow up as happy adults. And hurting them will leave scars, physically and emotionally. I do not want to be the kind of parent who will be resented by her kids.

I am proud to have my Ate’s (big sisters) as group members for their patience, hardwork and dedication. They also became a support group when times got tough. We even scheduled to meet up during graduation rites, then I found out that we are not graduating at the same semester. I wish to meet them soon, and see if they are also as crazy as in person!

DEVC 208 Experience

As in the previous posts, I have always loved the thought of Social Marketing. It is, I believe, my favorite form of behavior-change intervention because it appeals to a more personal level. This was also equally challenging for I have never designed my own SocMar plan before. As I went through the exercises, I learned a lot about the concept, development and implementation of a SocMar plan. But I guess it’s true what the say, the more you learn, the more you realize how little you know. And that’s absolutely unsettling.

I always feel a wave of relief mixed with excitement and sometimes, anxiety, whenever I get to hit the ‘submit’ button. The modules went along just fine, although I did want to lash out to some comments of my classmates about my campaign (that’s just me being defensive, sorry!), I still understood that those comments were meant to improve my outputs and not to offend me personally.

Anyway, thank you, classmates for a wonderful semester. Of course to Prof. Mel for patiently guiding and teaching us. Now, I can finally wake up. Or not. 🙂

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