Elementary and College Teachers Undergo the NCA Leadership Journey

On August 10, 2019, teachers from Dr. Yanga’s Colleges, Inc. (DYCI) arrived at the Angels Hills Retreat and Formation Center for a two-day Leadership Retreat-Seminar, led by the Ninoy and Cory Aquino Foundation. Based on Ninoy and Cory Aquino’s own spiritual-leadership, the weekend program focused on reflection, discernment, and self-sacrifice. Modules given by program director and main facilitator, Mr. Jampao Reyes, revolved around these three main themes.


There were fifty-two (52) participants in attendance, comprised of twenty (20) grade school teachers and thirty-five (35) college teachers, plus some deans and admin. Majority were men and in their early to late 20’s. To set the proper disposition for the weekend, the Ninoy and Cory Aquino Foundation Music Ministry (NCAFMM) opened with a “body prayer” – a song sung by everyone with corresponding actions.


The first activity was the Photo Language activity where the participants were divided into their sharing groups and asked to pick one picture from a series of photos that best described what they were feeling at that moment. Each person was given an opportunity to share his or her feelings and thoughts and one representative from each group was asked to share his or her insights in front. Afterwards, Ateneo Senior High School’s Noel Miranda gave the first talk for the day. He spoke to the teachers on “Teaching as a Vocation.” He likened teaching and one’s vocation to love and being in a relationship. Mr. Miranda encouraged the teachers to look into their motivations for teaching and find the strength amidst challenges and difficulties innate to the profession. This was followed by Mr. Jampao Reyes’ talk on “The Power of Care to Transform a Person.” He shared of his own personal experiences of care and how these instances spurred him to choose his current vocation as a formator and Journey Facilitator. He invited the participants to look at their own moments of care and how these have inspired them into the people they are now.


As the participants reflected on their past experiences, they were led to accomplish the Life-Book activity. Here, the teachers were guided to look back at highlights from their journeys as teachers – the people who inspired them to teach, challenging moments when they felt like giving up, joys they experienced, and others. After, they were once again divided into their sharing groups and each person shared his or her life-story with the group.


Day two began with a heartfelt message from DYCI President, Mr. Michael Yanga. Sir Kel thanked the teachers for their tireless work and expressed his utmost support for each one of them. Mr. Reyes reviewed the activities of the previous day, asking for the teachers’ notable takeaways. He then transitioned to the “Integrity Module.” Here, Mr. Reyes emphasized one of NCAF’s main themes: “The Call to Teach is the Call to Love.” He shared that a teacher is one who not only cares for the knowledge of a student but his or her character and well-being as well. He also reiterated that care as a teacher does not end in the classroom but extends also their colleagues and families. He encouraged the teachers to always go back to their core motivations and to do the good, even when there is no one looking.


To end the program, each participant was given a leaf-shaped paper, where they wrote down their personal commitments as a teacher in DYCI. They each read their commitments up front and placed it on the “Panata Tree”. The “Panata Tree” would be made visible within DYCI so that teachers would be able to recall their personal commitments whenever they’d see it on campus. Day two culminated with a mass and lunch for the teachers before going back to DYCI in Bulacan.