DYCOM: A step towards becoming an empowered Global Paulinian

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By Miguel Luis S. Nera

Date: November 9, 2016Posted by: One Paulinian

Dynamic Communication (DyCom) is a three-day training program especially designed by the International Relations Office and Language Development Center (IRO-LDC) for graduating Paulinian students who are about to proceed to their On-the-Job Training (OJT) and also for those who are going out of the country for Exchange and Exposure Programs to enable them “to act correctly, relate confidently and communicate dynamically” in both local and multi-cultural settings.

How it started

Ten years ago, the IRO-LDC opened its doors to foreign students. Sister Flordeliza Deza, SPC, the Director of IRO-LDC, shared that there was a lot of interest in going back to speaking English because somehow the Philippines had lost its competitiveness in terms of the language. “We used to be recognized prominently as regards the English language because at that point in time, the Philippines had the highest literacy rate in Asia but somehow in history, there was a deterioration,” she said. “The use of the vernacular was encouraged in the lower grades especially,” she added. In response to the given situation, the academic institution planned to reawaken the use of the [English] language.

Also, Paulinian students were being sent to the United States for the Work-and-Travel Programs but St. Paul University (SPU) Manila had been receiving feedback that although they were very capable, they could not carry on conversations in English. Because of this, Sister Flor designed and implemented the Dynamic Communication Training in 2008 and it has been very well-received by the members of the Paulinian community. Dr. Grace Leongson, Hotel and Restaurant Management Program Chair, whose class attended the first batch of training, was surprised by the outcome since her students became more confident and assertive individuals.

In the coming years, other Program Chairs found out about the training. This encouraged participation from other academic programs and it was even extended to the rest of the faculty. “Students from other countries started to come in because at that time, Asian countries were very aggressive in trying to make their students learn English, especially Korea,” Sister Flor said. “And so, there was that need and we started to teach English to improve English speaking by encouraging it in the campus and encouraging the teachers to promote it among the students,” she continued.

The objectives

From then, DyCom’s objectives evolved. These are: to strengthen personal awareness and deepen Paulinian foundations – to appreciate one’s roots and identity, as individual, Filipino and Paulinian, with the focus on the values inherent to such an identity; to enhance personality, from confidence, attitudes, behavior, poise, carriage, and wardrobe; to acquire the art and skills of dynamic communication, improve conversation skills, listening and reading, and using appropriate body language, gestures, among others; to strengthen and refine discipline-based communication capability, especially along management and office relations, customer transactions, reporting, feedback, presentations, and others; to acquire “global competence” in communication, behavior and relationships.

This year’s training consultant

Mylene “Justteen” S. Marasigan is an alumna of SPU Manila who ended up in the corporate world after earning a Bachelor’s degree in Nursing. Her areas of expertise are Values Formation and Culture Building, Learning and Development Strategy Design and Execution for Students and Professionals, Customer Service Framework Delivery and Linkage with Various Touch Points, Organizational Development, and Change Management among others. Marasigan is also a family-oriented person but aside from facilitating this year’s training, she also has consultancy work outside.
When asked about how she plans to juggle everything, she answered, “Personally, I give this a priority, because this is my alma mater to begin with… Maybe [my advocacy is to] have students and young professionals go through that recognition or enlightenment; perhaps that I can be an instrument for them to reach whatever goal that they have… This is just a start just to break that fear and be able to mold them into very confident, very certain, very full individuals that they can be as Paulinians... No matter where you go, even if you’re a nurse, you can slide from one industry to the other as long as you know your purpose, you know how to communicate, you know how to connect. Whatever God gives you, you adjust.”

Called by the calling

“At a certain point, it’s really about the calling that you have. It’s not because you didn’t become a doctor, you’re not going to be contributing to society. It goes in a different way, in a different form,” Marasigan said. “Because I was very curious, I told myself that I want something that is very different from nursing. I just want to try it so I went into banking and I didn’t know my way. I’m so scared of numbers and all that, but eventually, I became an assistant to a top-level manager who was sick. I find myself being a nurse in a corporate world and then when you look at everything that I do, most of it is really assisting people up on top and helping them because I can communicate more to the people below them so it’s kind of like nursing as well,” she added.

Redesigning the program

“Some of the concepts here were lifted from the old material but for this one when I looked at the design, when I looked at the components that they needed, I designed it in a way that five components will be included,” Marasigan explained. “The components of what we have here are a combination of trainings that I’ve conducted for a good number of years from values formation, values verification to confidence building, you have personality development there all the way up to adapting to different behaviors and still being able to communicate,” she added.

What’s in it for the students

“The benefit that they can get is really from the very basic foundation of their personal values because when the values are clear, it would be easier for them to make that decision to step-up. Aligning your personal values to the 5 Paulinian Core Values would really form a Paulinian who is not only a good communicator but is also able to adapt to different settings,” she said.

For those who are interested

DyCom is open to anyone who is willing to learn and improve his communication skills in English, especially foreign students. It does not even matter if you are already a professional who seeks for more improvement because of the responsibilities that come with your chosen career. In fact, a number of managers from different industries have already participated in the training. The best thing about it is that the program is designed to fit your needs. A special discount is given to Paulinians and Filipino students. If you are a foreign student, especially if you are not enrolled, you will have to pay for other services.

To the Paulinian community

For those who are about to step out of the University, “We believe that if you go out, you have to know who you are. When you go out in the world, you should bear the mark of a Paulinian, in your values, in your attitudes, in your appearance and in your action. So we also enhance personality. That’s why we’re building self-confidence. To apply the art and skill of communicating,” Sister Flor stated.

“They already have the tools that were provided by the system, by the school. It is complete. The teachings here are very cohesive. So with their potential, they have to really hone their skills and really put these into action and not be scared,” Marasigan said. “Recognizing that in certain new tasks, there will be certain anxieties but when your anxieties are managed, you will be able to get your potential out and be able to deliver an excellent performance which overall, the main goal is to answer the purpose of what God really created us for,” she added.