Seasons of Triumph


[Tenth in a series: Valedictory addresses from the different colleges of the University of Northern Philippines are here featured as excellent graduates reflect on the journey behind them and as they forward to the next.]

“Nagdaras ti aldaw, nagdaras ti panawen. Kaano lang idi kastoy, tattan kastoyen.” These words by Leo France D. Obebe (BS Criminology, magna cum laude), encapsulate the remarkable journey he and his fellow graduates have embarked upon over the past four years.

As Obebe took the stage to deliver his valedictory speech, his words resonated with the 450 strong graduates, each carrying with them a story of resilience, growth, and triumph. Obebe’s path to this moment was marked by a series of remarkable achievements, from being the youngest valedictorian in his daycare and kindergarten days to now standing tall as the representative of this exceptional class.

Reflecting on his academic journey, Obebe recounted the transition from in-person classes to the virtual world, where “laggy virtual conferences” and last-minute submissions of requirements became the norm. Yet, through it all, the graduates persevered, adapting and transforming into something remarkable, as Obebe eloquently put it.

“We may have wished for more, but we have learned to make the most of what we have. We’ve voiced our complaints but we persevered; we’ve shed tears but we pushed through,” Obebe said, acknowledging the challenges that life had thrown their way.

Indeed, Obebe’s own journey was not without its fair share of misfortunes and defeats. As he juggled the responsibilities of being an officer in various organizations, a dedicated student, and a responsible son, he faced countless sacrifices and sleepless nights. Yet, his mentor’s wise words – “There is time for everything” – guided him through the storm, reminding him to prioritize and focus on what truly mattered.

Through it all, Obebe and his fellow graduates have emerged as world-class professionals, equipped with the knowledge, values, and skills to excel in the field of law enforcement administration. From crime prevention to scientific crime detection, their education has prepared them to serve with integrity, accountability, and compassion.

Obebe’s speech was a testament to the support of the University’s leadership, faculty, and staff, who believed in the graduates and continuously accommodated their conflicting schedules. He also expressed gratitude to the law enforcement agencies that provided the graduates with real-life experience during their internships, forging connections that will undoubtedly serve them well in their future careers.

He also added that “the world doesn’t stop revolving despite our grievances, hardships, and longings.” Time, like the seasons, continues its relentless march, and it is up to the graduates to embrace the challenges and make the most of the opportunities that lie ahead.

Obebe’s message was one of unwavering determination and resilience. “Do not let a single bad experience discredit the years of hard work you’ve put in,” he said, inspiring the graduates to stay true to the values they have cultivated during their time at the University.


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