Mathematics Education Programs Orientation: a crucial step in a life-altering journey
20 Feb 2023 | Rhett Anthony C. Latonio
Most see a graduate degree as a destination, yet it is so much more than that.
Last 11 February 2023, the Ateneo Department of Mathematics conducted the Mathematics Education Programs Orientation in the CTC building. This event is held annually for current and prospective students for the three mathematics education graduate degrees offered by Ateneo de Manila University. Ably facilitated by Ms. Chara Punzal, the program opened with the introduction by Dr. Richard Eden, who gave an overview of the Mathematics Education programs and invited the students to explore the Ateneo campus, after which everyone enjoyed getting to know one another a little bit more with Dr. Lester Hao’s bingo-themed icebreaker.
The heart of the program was the presentation of the three Mathematics Education. The Master in Mathematics Education (M. Math Ed) degree was described in detail by Dr. Maria Alva Q. Aberin while the Master of Science in Mathematics Education (M.S. Math Ed) was discussed by and differentiated from the M Math Ed degree by Dr. Romina Ann S. Yap. The requirements and rigor of the Doctor of Philosophy in Mathematics Education (PhD Math Ed) degree were encapsulated by Dr. Angela Fatima H. Guzon’s concise presentation, with its requirements earning oohs and aahs from the current PhD students.
The students were given a glimpse of the high standards of the programs by the research presentation of Mr. Dennis Lee Jarvis B. Ybañez, a PhD Math Ed candidate who is in the last phase of his dissertation writing.
The event was made richer by the sharing of Mr. Marc Edly Magat and Dr. Mary Jane Castilla who both shared their experiences in their pursuits of their respective degrees. Mr. Magat, an MS Math Ed graduate, likened his experience in earning his graduate degree to learning how to play a musical instrument, in his case, the guitar. Dr. Castilla, the pioneering graduate of the Ateneo’s Phd in Math Ed program, gave useful and practical tips on how to survive the program, highlighting the importance of a support system and appreciating the productive struggle.
The closing remarks were given by the Mathematics Education Program Coordinator, Dr. Catherine P. Vistro-Yu, who talked about how the programs were developed and reminded the students of the rigor and standards of these degrees as they are being housed in the Department of Mathematics. She thanked the Mathematics Education faculty for playing their part in upholding the program’s standards and for their presence at the orientation.
Refreshments were served after the program, giving a chance for the current and future students to socialize with the faculty members and alumni and get more information and insider tips about the different programs.
While possessing a graduate degree does have its perks, what most fail to understand is that it is so much more than just a title; it’s the enjoyable albeit pressured productive struggles, the people you meet and the connections you make, and the consistent and constant effort to make yourself better. In pursuing these degrees, the rewards lie not in the destination, but in the journey… and nowhere is this truer than in the degrees of the Ateneo Mathematics Education programs.