IT'S the weekend once again!
It’s that time of the week where we feature local head turners who made a difference in their respective fields.
This weekend, we got hold of a Negrense beauty who is very visible in the national scene, as she is presently working with no less than our president himself, President Rodrigo Duterte. She is the Malacañang protocol officer Jasmin Oquindo Egan.
Let’s take a look at the life this Bacolodnon stunner as she answers our questions with no holds barred.
Was being a Negrense an advantage to you in pursuing your career?
I was not born in Negros but I was born with a Negrense parent whose family raised me in Negros.
Being a Negrense has many positive influences in my character especially in pursuing my career. Three decades ago, Negros suffered from a political and economic setback that the whole province was poverty stricken and children were dying of hunger. These children were called "batang Negros." After the Edsa Revolution, Negros was prioritized in the economic rehabilitation and sugar industry was revived. Today, Negros is well known for its resilience. This trait has been rubbed on to us the millennial and knowing what we have gone through made me choose to endeavor for mental and emotional health of my fellow Negrense. Thus my choice of Psychology as career.
What contributions to our society are you working on now?
There are many ways I can think of in contributing to the betterment of the society. I contribute through my personal charity work; I provide support to the development work of non-government organizations, and importantly I support the governance of our good president.
What were your struggles? How did you overcome them?
Struggles in daily life is normal. No one has a perfect life. Nevertheless, a struggle is also a process to develop the character of a person. I grew up with a lot of challenges in life. I am half-breed of an Australian father and a Filipina mother. Being mestiza without wealth in my name was indeed a struggle. But with that, I have learned to work for my own identity. I was not born to be identified with anyone, I was born to be me and I am happily seeing myself climb up the ladder that I built for myself.
Can you give 3 lessons you learned at work and in pursuing dreams?
There are three things I have learned in my work:
1. Patience. My work requires me sleepless nights, non-stop travels, and protocols to observe. These experience made me very particular with coping skills that I can even close my eyes for just seconds and I can regain composure anytime anywhere.
2. Selflessness. I can't think of myself anymore. I have to forget who I am. I have to be thinking of who I am working for and the great responsibility entrusted in me. This experience made me become magnanimous.
3. Trustworthiness. I can't be in this work if I can't be trusted. My work entails the trust of another life in my hands. I have learned that in all eventuality, I have to defend the life entrusted in me.
With these three lessons I learned from my work experience, I have learned to be patient, selfless, and I trust my own judgment in pursuing my dreams.
How can a woman excel in work and in life based on your experience?
I believe that the struggles I experience in life made me a stronger and better person. It has strengthened my resolve to build a name for myself through hard work and perseverance.
On a lighter note, what do you do for fun?
I believe that fun is a state of mind. You don't look for it. You create it. This gives me the opportunity to do great things with my loved ones. Having them enjoy what I do for them is what I do for fun.
What are your hobbies?
My hobby is working on my physical, mental, and emotional health routine. I do kickboxing, I listen to music to calm my spirit, and I travel with my family to bond.
What makes you smile?
I am the easiest person to please. I love life. I enjoy people and the trivialities of life. I smile at good memories. I smile at children laughing. I smile when I see a rainbow. I smile when I feel that I have done something great for someone who needs it the most.
Lastly, how would you like to be remembered?
I would like to be remembered as a strong woman but compassionate. Focused but flexible. Works with passion but can multitask. Most importantly, I would like to be remembered as the best mother to my children. A good wife, daughter, sister, and friend.
Jasmin Oquindo Egan indeed is beauty with substance. We wish her the best of luck as she plays a crucial role in forging change in our country.
Kudos Jasmin and thank you for trusting SunStar Bacolod!
Special thanks as well to Jasmin's friend Joery Cabus for arranging this interview.