In its aim to nurture and develop the social, emotional, ethical and intellectual totality of individuals as part of a good medical education, MHAM brought its remarkable back to basics to become a doctor of substance and depth by providing the most character building opportunities to medical clerks and freshmen aspiring doctors, respectively.
Started with the senior medical clerks who completed the 5-day General Orientation Week prior to their clerkship period last May 28 to June 1 this year, the character and team building held at Kalea Hall, Big Hotel, W.O. Seno St., Mandaue City, Cebu was conducted by no other than Cebu’s expert in clinical psychology and known facilitator, Mr. Niel Steve M. Kintanar.
According to a full-time faculty of the University of San Carlos, Mr. Niel Steve Kintanar, who facilitated the aforementioned character and team building to batch Nexus, the endeavor was brought back upon the direction of the College Dean, Dr. Ma. Socorro Manaloto, who saw the impelling need to bring back to basics the character building to aspiring doctors.
“This is a 4-batch event but ideally it should be two days but since it will be difficult for them to come for another day so we stretched it to one day from 9:00am to 8pm and really it is teaching of the soft skills. This one is a good noisy group and I liked them because they are interactive which really showed in their assessment but so far at the end of every program I am happy that they liked it with good feedback. Dr. Manaloto asked me to give the team building seminar because she observed that in their one year together there were fights or they don’t know how to adjust to consultants, they don’t know how to adjust to extensions or frustrations, so it’s always been about the team”, Kintanar said in an interview.
A native Cebuano motivational speaker and a registered psychologist by profession, he also pointed out that team building is an essential activity to build one’s character with the team. “The first two goals for this event is to build character to know that they are responsible for the choices that they’ve made. Eventually it is all about self-awareness also because once you are self-aware you can make different choices. The next goal is to build the team so that they would know how they can act toward each other, to have trust with each other so that they can survive their one year of clerkship. I am teaching them skills of interacting and surviving their one year together”, he added.
In 2004, the event-facilitator was the first one who gave the same character and team building workshop to the MHAM students through Dr. Manaloto. A graduate from Ateneo de Manila University in 2000, he also divulged that with the new direction, the plan is to engage all MHAM students every year to have the said workshop with the soft skills teachings.
Driven with good faith that people of good character have been remarkably successful, Rachel Ruth ‘Zyren’ Orongan of batch Nexus expressed her delight for having been participated the team building facilitated by Mr. Kintanar.
“I am delighted to be part of this character and team building with my groupmates and this is a need to help us build our character and personality that may affect our profession in the medical field. At the same time I feel excited and exhausted for the medical clerkship but I believe that I too, can make it”, 26-year old Orongan said.
A creative cosplayer and a MHAM SALINE Option member, Zyren, as ashe is fondly called, was among the two hundred fifty-four (254) fourth year students who participated this year’s team building which was intended for the medical clerks prior to their one year clerkship period.
Meanwhile another workshop intended for first year students for the academic year 2018-2019 was conducted by Mr. Niel Steve Kintanar held last August 1-3, 2018 at the MHAM AVR 1.
The 3-day workshop with five batches was part of the one week General Orientation Program which was attended by freshmen, transferees, faculty members, student council and various school organizations’ officers who welcomed them to the very institution that they have chosen to become morally-bounded and character-oriented physicians in the future.
Aimed to teach the soft skills to the new students with different types of personalities of each group, the interaction was also a way for them to adjust with their classmates in a new learning environment with the MHAM way.
In a separate interview with Eloiza Jean Custodio from batch Insignis, she fully believed that character is built, and not in the genes. A graduate of BS in Medical Technology in 2017 from Universidad de Zamboanga, Zamboanga City, 22-year old Custodio was among the first year students who attended the Character Building Seminar for batch 2022.
Beaming with pride and honor for having been significantly awarded and conferred with Leadership, Proficiency and Service awards during her college years, she expressed her inmost desire to become a medical doctor as she hailed from a community that has a deep need of medical competence, aside from the lack of health education and medical assistance due to poverty.
“It was my first time to attend such thing, and I believe the character building was a way for us to develop not only for cameraderie and motivation but also to look deep within each of our own characters on how we want to become as future doctors. A doctor without virtues technically is nothing, for me. I do believe that whatever profession you are to be in the future, one should never forget about the moralities of life specially in the spiritual aspect. Doctors might be healers but our strength is not from our own, we should remember owing all glory to the True Healer. Aside from the great recommendations from our family friends, I have always admired MHAM from afar. Having the most competent doctors both excellent in skills and intellect, I am assured that I can also have the competence and greatness that MHAM can mold me into. I’ve known a lot of things from the seminar, even things about myself that I never knew about. I also gained tips on how to survive medicine, keeping myself mentally, and emotionally healthy. It helped me a lot to be able to see myself in a more transparent matter, being able to be honest to myself and to help me build the character I need in being a great doctor someday”, Custodio said in an interview.
Just as no worthy building can be erected on a weak foundation and no lasting reputation worthy of respect can be built on a weak character, this aspiring doctor reiterated that character indeed, is built, and not inherited. “I do believe that character is built. Just as muscles can be toned, lifestyle being practiced, character is depending on how you mold yourself to be you. It renders diligence and discipline. If you want to have an optimistic character, then you practice being optimistic”, she concluded.
To date, ‘Eloisa’ is among the new students who endulged themselves by joining the school organizations that may also help them in expressing themselves with the use of their talent and skills. Since dancing has always been her art of poetry and her stress reliever, she is now part of the MHAM UPBEAT who, empowered by her seniors, motivates her to be an intellectual MHAM student who will never forget her passion for arts.
With a total of one thousand two hundred twenty-six (1,226) officially-enrolled aspiring doctors, this academic year consists with four hundred twelve (412) freshmen, two hundred sixty-two (262) sophomores, two hundred ninety-eight (298) juniors and two hundred fifty-four (254) seniors who are called to become globally competent and morally grounded medical practitioners.
With the school’s intent to bring forth and etch into the minds and hearts of the future doctors by bringing back the character and team building workshop, the student-participants will be equipped with knowledge and know-how to interact, solve the problems and identify the sources of conflicts into a radical shift because every problem is a character building opportunity.
As one’s character is developed through time with reflected experiences along the way, the MHAM aspiring doctors who are adhered to act with the core values on professionalism, respect, oneness, leadership, integrity, fairness and excellence will truly give meaning to this meaningful endeavor to commit striking change where character will keep them in the building and at times, open wider doors to possible opportunities that may come forth. (Ana Liza Abao)