Lakas! Lupit! Astig!
Those words echoed in the once eerie corridor as I was rushing towards my next class. As I got closer and closer to that section of the building, the sound just kept getting louder and louder. It felt like my eardrum was going to explode. “Who was shouting?,” I thought to myself. Catching my breath, I stopped for a few moments. I then looked up and immediately saw a small gap between a door and its frame. Out of curiosity, I went nearer and nearer until I was able to peek through it. And lo and behold, people wearing these navy blue polo shirts were shouting the three distinct words as if it’s their last breath. “That’s amazing,” I whispered. After some time, I retrieved myself and scanned the wooden door, desperately looking for at least a flyer posted on its surface. “Oh, it’s UPLB SChemES,” I uttered.
Cheering with fierceness and conviction, as well as never being afraid nor provoked, that is how the UPLB Society of Chemical Engineering Students (UPLB SChemES) has been inspiring and steering its mighty ship towards the waves of success. Navigating blazing trails and inspiring evolution, they have been a forefront for influence and strength in numbers. Throughout the years, they have always been a part of positive changes within the community as they express their discrete ways of unity by camaraderie, like in their yell, “Iba kasi kaming mga miyembro, lahat sumisigaw, ‘UPLB SChemES!’”
Thirty seven years of honoring professional and academic excellence, UPLB SChemES, to be regarded as the ‘Society’ henceforth, has always been the face of realization of how excellence can be achieved by being organized and united. Their monumental journey started on a memorial day, the 11th day of September, year 1986, wherein the efforts and impeccable determination of twenty Chemical Engineering students gave birth to the organization. Despite being an esteemed organization, it has strived to become the main housing of Chemical Engineering students within the institution. Equipped with the appropriate skills and the hopes of becoming the leading academic organization in chemical engineering, the organization aspires to keep its burning passion alive as it steers its mighty vessel into the uncharted waters.
In its yearly commemoration, the Society has aimed to give back to its community as well as to celebrate its milestones. It has launched incentivized competitions, outreach programs, review sessions, and community-centered initiatives. However, the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic has greatly affected the organization’s face-to-face operations. Hence, it had no other choice but to strive in an online setup, posing a certain struggle as communication was quite limited. But with the betterment of the living conditions and fully lifting of the COVID-19 restrictions, the Society is now back on its two feet and are fully-driven to celebrate its 37th year, the first year of life after the pandemic.
With high hopes, the Society has never been stronger. With the theme, “Awaken: Navigating blazing trails, inspiring evolution,” its 37th anniversary celebration brought light into the society’s progression and its perseverance despite adversities. Showcasing their strength by numbers, the astounding highlights of the anniversary activities has locked its place in its history books.
MEET THE BOARD
With the board exams standing in-between a Chemical Engineer and their license, the Society has strived to be of aid by partnering with the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC). Meet the Board is an annual forum, disseminating an overview of the upcoming chemical engineering licensure exam in its respective year. Moreover, the PRC also imparts study tricks and tips in order for the aspiring takers to pass with flying colors. Held in the NCAS Auditorium, UPLB last August 2023, the year 2023 installment of Meet the Board was as successful as can be.
NEW FRESHIE ORIENTATION
Each year, UPLB welcomes its freshmen, hailing from different walks of life, into its majestic campus. And with that comes the aspiring Chemical Engineering freshmen, taking their first step into the path towards being a licensed Chemical Engineer. With that, the Society has coordinated with the UPLB Department of Chemical Engineering (DChE) to extend a warm welcome to the aspiring freshmen. Other than a warm welcome, introduction to Chemical Engineering and the degree program’s syllabus, opportunities within the field and a formal introduction to each and everyone in the DChE faculty are also presented in the orientation.
The Engineering world has been constantly evolving and with that, opportunities are increasing day-by-day. Taking advantage of the many opportunities in this realm, Pathfinder was born. Pathfinder is an annual activity by the Society to encourage Junior and Senior High School students to enter the realm of engineering and embark on the various categories of the profession. This activity allows the students to explore the field, learn more about the contribution of engineering to the society, and be inspired by certain engineers and their achievements in their respective fields.
A part of the Society’s initiatives is to give back, especially to the College of Engineering and Agro-Industrial Technology (CEAT) community. After careful formulation, the Open Tambayan was launched. The Open Tambayan is an annual activity wherein the Society aims to give back by providing free food and also free transportation, via Libreng Sakay, for the CEAT community. Coupled with games and a program, this activity also provides entertainment while the astounded students are filling up their bellies.
It may have been four years since the Society’s last physical exhibit, but that did not hinder its drive to bounce back and bring the exhibit onto the table. In this year’s edition, the Society shed light onto innovative and sustainable solutions to combat climate change Carbon Capture and Utilization (CCU). Research has shown that CCU has the potential to drastically lower greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. This is through the utilization of excess carbon dioxide in industries, recycling them, and ultimately posing an alternative solution for the world’s climate change problem. The ultimate goal of the Society’s annual exhibit is to present information on a relevant sector related to chemical engineering and to showcase the organization’s members and accomplishments.
Commonly known as “LM,” Legal Minds is an interdepartmental debate competition which caters to all of the engineering departments in UPLB. This competition gives way for the discussion of relevant issues in the world of engineering as well as technological breakthroughs in recent years. Student representatives are given a way to open up meaningful talks and exchange of points that concerns the different motions while representing their respective departments.
Even in its 37th year, the Society has always strived for perfection. But rather than complete perfection, the Society has always kept its service to the public as the driving force and the heart of its activities. Rather than mere success, the 37th anniversary highlights the progression of the organization and its burning passion to to hold true to its commitment and dedication to the community. And these experiences and accomplishments do not stop at the end of the year, rather, they serve as the building blocks for the perfect formula of the organization, inspiring the next generation of members for the years to come.