February 22, 2018

For Marielle Asanuddin, the week of February 19 to 23 in 2018 is one of the most exciting yet challenging periods of her life as a student.

A 12th grader at Zamboanguita Science High School, Division of Negros Oriental, Mari is one of the participants for the editorial writing category of the National Schools Press Conference (NSPC), and the Sulat-Tanghal category of the National Festival of Talents (NFOT), which are simultaneously held in Dumaguete City.

Her penchant for writing started as early as Grade 4, when she competed for the feature writing category of their Regional Schools Press Conference. This is her first time as an NSPC qualifier, and for her, it is both an honor and a blessing to represent the Central Visayas Region.

She prepared for the two competitions by reading, researching, and reviewing, which she had to juggle with work immersion as a Senior High School (SHS) student.

When asked how she was able to distinguish between journalistic and creative writing, Mari shared the lessons she learned from the two major events of the Department of Education (DepEd).

Mari strongly believes that campus journalists shall be vanguards of truth, and that no one shall write on any subject matter without knowing the facts. Her conviction was further strengthened by NSPC.

“My heart could not bear it when I’m told to write a piece that I do not know anything about. It’s tantamount to lying to your audience,” she relayed.

When it comes to creative writing, the Sining Tanghalan of NFOT taught her to go beyond her boundaries. “Level up your imagination. Go out of the box. There’s more to discover and share to the people,” Mari enthused.

Interestingly, Mari is taking up Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) strand under the academic track of SHS, relaying that she is really into Math since she was a kid.

But will she pursue writing in the future?

“I still and will always have the right to write my own story called life.”