Monumental would be an understatement if one would describe the most attended Metro Manila version of the STI 17th National Youth Convention as the NYC was played with practically all sessions jampacked. Five years ago the total number of attendees of the NYC was 21,000 students. This week, the Metro Manila NYC totalled 21,416 the most ever.
After three years at the SMX Convention Center the 17th NYC in Metro Manila went back to its former home the Aliw Theatre in Pasay City. The curtains opened with ethereal voices of the STI College Global City Chorus singing the the song "Awit ng Paghahangad" which was a very apt Invocation Hymn. The 10 singers also sang the Philippine National Anthem in acapella.
Former NYC speaker and now Vice-President for Communications Elbert L. de Guzman started the ball rolling by welcoming the delegates to the venue. At the same time he asked the delegates to listen well and learn from the speakers who are at hand. Being a former speaker himself, Elbert kept the crowd alive by making them chant as the delegates answered his shout of "It's all about me" with a chant of "It's all about WE!" Elbert perked up the crowd even before the first speaker came out.
One of the most anticipated part of the Metro Manila National Youth Convention is the opening dance number of the NYC Dancers that ends up with yours truly joining them in the latter part of the dance. This year, my very reliable and loyal choreographer combined the "Moves like Jagger" dance music with the song "I'm sexy and I know it!" which was again a big hit for the STI delegates watching.
STI College Bacoor's Ricky Bunag has been with the NYC team the past few years and has joined me since 2003 when we still had convention for High School students. For him this Metro Manila run is special since this is his first time to be a speaker in front of his own STI Students. Ricky tackled the talk "It's all about Me, Myself and I: Self-Development.
On his second tour of duty, veteran trainer, book writer and inspirational speaker Pido Aguilar delivered a moving talk which is entitled "It's all about WE - Me and my Community!" The delegates will definitely remember his most telling advice saying that "We are not Pigs!"
There was a time in the early goings of the NYC that one of the staple names being waited upon was one of the best speakers of the NYC- AKR. He has since passed his legacy to Dennis Evangelista who has been a crowd favorite and a speaker who has made a lot of followers. This event will be something very memorable to him since days before the convention his father died and him still being a part of the convention shows his commitment to making STIers learn more. Dennis took on the topic "It's all about US - Making a difference!"
Another thing new about the event is the introduction of another partner of STI which is TAO PO! TAO PO is another way to become a changeneer and make the government work for us. One of the most vocal about the changes and a staunch advocate of Tao po is ABS-CBN Regional News Head Charie Villa. Charie led the registration proceedings to make sure that STIers become more proactive in making government work for us.
The 17th National Youth Convention, truly a one of a kind experience for every STIer, one that every STIer can be proud of being a part of.