Military service has no gender, says top PMA female cadet

Military service has no gender, says top PMA female cadet

BAGUIO CITY – A female top graduating cadet of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) Class 2021 has advised young aspirants to prepare if they want to enter the academy.

Christine Joyce Lodovico Andog, 25, of Cabanatuan, Nueva Ecija, said this during the press conference for the announcement of the top 10 graduates on Monday.

“To all the Filipino youth who aspires to be a cadet, first ask yourself, is this what you really want? This is because passion will be your driving force in achieving your dream. If you want it, prepare ahead of time,” she said.

Andog is among the 26 females in the 164 members of the “MASALIGAN” (Mandirigmang Samahan ng Lakas at Sandigan ng Bayan) Class who will be graduating on May 10 and joining the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP). There are 138 male cadets in the class.

Of the 26 females, seven are among the 16 awardees. They are Andog who is top 5; Valerie Mae Vicente Dicang of La Trinidad, Number 3; Pamela Avila Calleja of Malinao, Albay at number 8; and Shirly Fatima Eguia Lim of Tacloban City at number 10.

The female cadets who will receive special awards are Lady Deane Balboa Sarmiento of San Fernando, Pampanga as the Athletic Saber awardee for the female cadets; Mae Pearl Alarcon Agustin of Malinao, Aklan will receive the Military Justice award; and Annie Mazo Chen of Sta. Rosa, Nueva Ecija will get the Journalism award.

Andog said that reviewing and knowing one’s weakness and doing something about it will help the aspirant pass the initial screening which is the entrance exam.

“Review a lot. Life does not always depend on luck. If you want to be a PMA cadet then work hard for it, pray for it,” Andog said. “Preparing the physique of the person does not only start from the time the result of the written examination is released but must be a way of life. Exercise should be a part of life,” she added.

She said the physical and mental abilities are not the only factor that aspirants should have but also the character needed which includes integrity, perseverance, self-respect, and strong faith in God.

On her part, Dicang said that as a female cadet, the most difficult thing “is proving yourself in all aspects. Like a small girl competing in physical, academic, military excellence along with 138 males is absolutely preposterous.”

She encouraged female aspirants saying “service has no gender, believe in God and believe in yourself.”

Jan Hernan Rebadulla Perez of Alabang, Muntinlupa, the Brigade commander and number 4 graduating cadet, said having the right and proper mindset “is a big challenge, emotionally draining and physically restricting that has affected my mental stability. But in PMA, I managed to conquer my fears.”

“Survival is by adhering to the honor code and system, studying hard, and clinging to God,” he said.

Perez said as the Brigade Commander and a top student, the passion of serving the country is a by-product of the purpose for which he was able to succeed as a cadet and achieve many things while in the academy. (PNA)

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