by EMILY D. RUDD
I AM A LOUISIAN
by EMILY ACOSTA
BSE CLASS 1967-
Dip. In Teaching 1980 - Sydney
Presently resides in
Gosford City, NSW.
GREETINGS FROM CENTRAL COAST.
It has been a very good year for the Dingle-Rudd families. This year we experienced several highs and lows... but who hasn’t. Foremost of our high point was the birth of our fifth grandchild, Baby Jamilia Natalie, lovely sister to Naomi, Noah, Jacobus and Xzavier. She just had her Christening recently and around 70 family and friends came to the event. We had a glorious BBQ picnic for the celebration at Terrigal Haven. Congratulations family.
We also saw Noah finished her HSC, and Peter obtaining a Diploma in Aged Care . Naomi is continuing her studies in Child Care while the two boys finished the year from grade school with a great hope. We are also delighted to announce the visit of Mark Furniss’ mom and dad from UK. How sweet of them to visit various Aussie landmarks for 3 months. Earlier in 2014, we also a lovely visit from Jason and Pier Shilliday from Northern Ireland. We enjoyed a weekend away at Jenolan Caves and the Blue Mountains.
As for us, we have happily moved to Gosford and absolutely enjoy the transition. I do not enjoy the flight of stairs to the top apartment , but the view is excellent , so why complain. I finished my year of doing casual teaching and my beloved Scripture will be continued next year with a shared duty. In the meantime, I will be moving to St Patrick’s Church for my regular devotions, as it is reasonably closer to my new residence.
I would like to say thank you to my friends at Our Lady of the Sea Parish for believing in me and relying on me for some duties there. My faith brings me anywhere, and I am sure the good Lord will see me safe and true to my goals. See you around.
I have decided to write an article about my old school in Baguio. This is also a time to extend my sincere appreciation for the opportunities that I experienced before I migrated to Australia.
WISDOM BUILDS (SAPIENTIA AEDIFICAT)
I am a Louisian, and in my person is the presence of the spirit of the mountains where the school I went to have emerged a century ago. I am honoured to be a graduate of this prestigious university, one of the top-ranking universities in the world. As a student, I went to school riding on jeeps and walked to and from the bus stop to the school, determined and purpose-driven to obtain a higher education .
College life was a busy life as I immersed in my studies on top of my duties as part-time staff of the Department of Education Office. We were fondly called “working students” which was a big help in my staying in school. We had the privilege of working closely with the Registrar’s Office under the Registrar Mr. Daniel Milo. I have become friends with his children and up to now still in contact with Agnes Milo-Garcia, who has been my classmate at university and now a primary school teacher here in Australia. Like me, we both studied to become teachers and coincidentally, both migrated to Australia with our respective families.
As a student, I was under the tutelage of Mr. Florentino Hornedo, Dr. Elizalde, Mrs Rimas, Mrs Paraan, Miss Carbonell and Mr Crespillo to name a few. Sister Paz was the Dean of Women .My association with the Student Catholic Action was the inspiration of my continuing work with Catholic Schools here in Australia. I remember going to Baguio City Jail to teach the Christian Doctrine. I remember teaching catechism in my barrio in Pozorrubio, those younger boys and girls including my two growing brothers! I was also an active member of the White and Blue, the school newspaper. I remember my first poetry written for the paper.
All this time, I was living with my relatives from Scoutbarrio, which is situated near Camp John Hay. That time, CJH was an American Base where in American servicemen served or came for rest and recreation. My uncle and brother were working in Camp John Hay and their respective homes were part of the base. Later on, they were given the deeds of their houses and were allowed to make improvements or renovate. Camp John Hay has been handed over to the Philippine government since.
I will never forget the opportunity for me to be a working student. The Rector of St Louis and most of the executives were Belgian fathers who belonged to the CICM Congregation. Most prominent were Fr Zwanepoel, Fr Ghisleen De Vos and Fr Evarist Verlinden. Up to now, my connection with Fr. Evarist, as my Spiritual Director, is still unbroken. I saw him last time I was there in October 2012 just before his birthday. I was so glad that even retired from the college, he is still around the campus working for the retired clergy.
I am one of the lucky ones whose SLU JOURNEY did not end at graduation in 1967, but went on as Secretary of the Graduate School, then worked at DZWT with Fr Hugo Delbare, now deceased. I also taught at St Louis Girls’ High for a year, and there I really enjoyed working with colleagues including Miss Cordero who I believe is still the Principal at the combined school for secondary boys and girls. It was exciting to visit them during the Teachers’ Day Celebrations in October 2012. I thoroughly enjoyed that day attending the Holy Eucharist, watching the performance and awarding of school teachers, then breaking bread with the staff after the show. That was good stuff.
JOURNEY TO AUSTRALIA
After leaving at the end of the school year in 1972, I transferred to San Sebastian College as a Primary school teacher. By July 1974 , I migrated to Australia . I came to this land flowing with milk and honey inspired by a couple of Louisian friends who have left Baguio earlier . Yes , I heard from them about how easy it was to apply. I tried my luck and was rewarded with a migrant visa. My future was beckoning me to travel and so I did not delay . My father’s sudden passing was just the sad part of the beginning of my adventure overseas. But his death made me stronger and resilient to travel alone, face the future with just God knowing where my paths would lead me!
MY BRILLIANT CAREER
In every endeavour, we learn to fend for ourselves quite easily. With the help of contacts, my first hurdle was finding a place to stay. I found just the right place to be on the third day I arrived on Australian soil. I joined my first family and the rest is history. I will never forget how welcoming and warm they were. I was inspired to find a job so easily. I went to visit the Social Services but their hand-out I did not get to enjoy. I found a job at the University of New South Wales, as a librarian on my third week. I had to move from my first family due to transport problem. I lived in Coogee with an Asian family with one child near the workplace for a while.
FAST FORWARD TO 1982
I obtained my permanent posting as a teacher at this time. This came about after I attended a two-year Bridging Course at Sydney Teachers College . This diploma was my entry to the teaching profession here in Sydney. I taught in various schools in Western Sydney for 13 years then 12 years here on the Central Coast. I still do some casual teaching in both the Public and Private school systems. I am semi-retired and still enjoy my craft . I have a few more years am sure while at the peak of my health to continue this exalted calling.
TEACHING IS ABOUT LIFE
i consider myself my children’s first teacher. And as a mother of four , I do my share of keeping rein in the family with my husband. Our children can be the reflection of our own life, our personal choices , values and dreams. As a grandparent, we continue being in that role – to be the guiding light of the young. There is a rich knowledge that we can share to the youth we come in contact with. We are able to right the wrong, straighten what needs to be done.
I am a proud Louisian and will always be grateful for the nurturing spirit of my teachers at St Louis University. Those pioneering teachers were heroes in my eyes for they showed me how to lead my life, moulding my character and mind to be a thinker, to be an independent stakeholder in the world that I want to be for my future family, with high morals and following the mandate of the Vision of SLU. I learned and became an adventurous spirit like the Belgian missionaries who came to sow seeds of learning and Christian life in our country.
May God continue to bless St Louis University, its staff and students.