CHALLENGE THE NORM: Fellow Titan, Adj Regidor, On Life Beyond the Classroom
Learning is not limited by the walls of a classroom, especially not for those who dare to take that first step out of their comfort zones. In this interview, Adj Regidor shares his experiences as a Titan and how his journey to becoming an achiever began with a simple desire to challenge the norm.
In a world where expectations have already been set by society, how does one dare to be different? For one student, attending college far away from home meant literally stepping out of his comfort zone. “Coming here (Manila) was actually the first time for me to be out of Bicol. It was fun because as early as 16 I was already ‘adulting’. I did (still do) a lot of sideline jobs while studying; that’s my way of improving my skills and earning extra money,” he recalled.
The student is no other than Adj Regidor, who was in 4th year high school when he heard about Enderun Colleges, after Senior Vice President Mr. Daniel Perez visited their campus. As a self-confessed nerd who’s into design and technology, he saw the opportunity of taking up Technology Management as a means of making the open and connected world of tomorrow come as seamless as possible for both human and machine.
After passing entrance exams at top universities, “I still chose Enderun because it’s really the school I wanted,” he said. “It’s a very good learning environment. Enderun provides us with good practitioners, and I’m really blessed and humbled to have the mentorship and support of Dr. Lydia King, the Department head of Technology Management, and Dr. Edgardo Rodriquez, Dean of the College of Business, Technology and Entrepreneurship.”
Currently aged 20, one can say Adj has his hands full after having won several competitions outside of school and at the same time contributing to the Enderun community, but he believes achievements are only fruits of things pursued with sincerity of heart.
Fueled by motivation
Just recently, Adj became part of Globe Telecom’s Top 30 Game Changers, where 550 students who applied from all over the country including those from top universities were filtered down to 30, of which Enderun was represented for the first time.
“Our business case was to create an innovation in order for ‘Globe at Home’ to be able to penetrate the C2 and D market, because that’s one of the revenue opportunities for Globe. We did a lot of product, process, and customer experience innovation, and at the end of the day, we won the competition.”
Aside from being awarded with P60,000 and a trip to Singapore, Adj considers the reason for his participation equally rewarding. Last year, he also brought the school’s maiden appearances to the Aboitiz Future Leaders Business Summit, Nestle MILE Program, and Markprof’s Top 100 Qualifiers. Despite being discouraged at the thought of not making the cut, Adj is grateful the screening process of the programs he applied for were very inclusive.
“My main motivation for joining these competitions is to go beyond the four corners of the classroom and, at the same time, for Enderun to be recognized.”
But how exactly did Adj transition from that 16-year-old boy to the achiever he is now? “You have to be charming,” he joked. “You just have to apply and apply and apply.” It boils down to being aware of what’s happening around you and taking that first step, he believes.
“For example, ‘yung first ever competition ko in my college life, that was 2nd year, sa Google Web Rangers. It’s about cyberbullying. That’s something that is in line with me kasi I know the experience of being cyberbullied, and I was a cyberbully. So sabi ko kailangan ko na magbago, and the best way for me to rehabilitate and redeem myself is to actually be an instrument of change.”
“The reason why our campaign won was also because it had a lot of insights from my team; we all had experiences. Because of our experiences, we were able to craft and produce a good campaign that really touched different people, especially ‘yung mga teenagers.” The win served as their boarding pass to Google Singapore and Silicon Valley in California.
“Everything is in line with my values,” he added. “For example I applied for AmCham because they have this value of helping communities through their CSR. Sa Nestle naman is shared value. Sa Globe naman is innovation. I think that’s the first step, and at the same time you just really have to apply, to go out there.”
For Fellow Titans
Adj admitted, however, that being a scholar in Enderun was a humbling experience for him. He hopes that the lessons he took to heart from his journey will serve as an inspiration for his fellow Titans. “The first thing you need to do is learn to give way. So when you’re not the leader, it doesn’t mean you won’t support the whole team. It’s just that as a group, it’s not about who the leader is; it’s all about delivering the output that is expected from that group.”
“Second is preparation. I don’t believe in last minute cramming. I really crafted my résumé in order to be part of those programs.” Adj had the opportunity to intern for creative firm Timo Weiland in New York as a marketing and social media associate as well as in McCann Worldgroup, an advertising agency, for his second internship. He also aimed to be of big help to the Enderun community by establishing E-Chrome, an extra-curricular student organization that influences lives through the appreciation of technology.
“I really learned you have to look at things multidimensionally. When you’re grouped with the most competitive and smartest students here in the Philippines talagang mapapaisip ka what can you bring to the table. With that, I really learned how to find where I put myself in a team.”
Paying it Forward
But of course, like adulting, being a game changer comes with realities that need to be tackled. For Adj, a big challenge was being a man of his words. “I applied to these programs telling them that I’ll be helping other people. I don’t want to be pretentious,” he explained. “Being engaged with the different communities and social problems that the programs highlighted gave me an idea on what are the pain points of today.”
Turning this into action, Adj described his present venture as the outcome of the challenges he faced, yet one that he turned into an opportunity. “The fruit…was actually building a company towards helping communities and working hand-in-hand with the government by connecting government agencies with the highly skilled and experienced experts, scientists, consultants, and businesses. Right now, I’m the co-founder and CMO of Partnered, together with CEO Fil Garciano, and after graduating this is where I want to give my 100% energy. There are great minds out there, and they just need the platform to be heard. I want us to have a voice.”
“At the end of the day, I realized it’s not about being motivated to do this with a particular reward,” he concluded to say. “It’s all about being genuine. I want students to be more aware of what’s happening in their country. I don’t care if you have different opinions, as long as you engage in the discourse of social issues and you’re motivated to create change, help other people and inspire the youth.”
Today, Adj continues to break the stereotypes by living out his own piece of advice. Because in an ever-changing world where society does not know what to expect next, truly, the best way to stay relevant is to “dare to be different.”