The midterm examination is over and Lecturers are now preparing for the Final Exam. There were students who were absent during the midterm for some reasons which is common to everyone. Sick... Clash with other subject in the exam... etc... This is normal... But what is not normal is that there may be hundreds of students who have excuses of not taking the midterm exam. Does the College have data base for these students? It seems that the same students are doing this every semester. What does the College do in order to avoid these abesences? I may asked these questions over and over again but who will care? Who suffers a lot everytime this happens? THE LECTURER!!!!!!!!!! Why? Simply because lecturers were tasked to make another set of exams. Is it easy to make examination paper? Hell NO!!!!!!!! I can not complain now because there is no meeting for this... I met the Dean just this afternoon but I forgot to tell him regarding this matter. It is quite hard to catch the Dean for he is busy most of the time. Any suggestions?
Monday, October 31, 2011
Have you ever been subjected to a body search by an airport security? My flight from Wisconsin to Chicago was at 10:10 am October 30, 2011. I was the last one to check-in together with Gas and Lest the Brazilian host parents of my new sister-in-law. When it was my turn, I removed my laptop from my knapsack and put it on a tray. Then I removed my shoes and took another tray. I also removed my jacket although I was chilling a bit and put it on a tray as well. I handled by boarding pass together with my passport to the ATS (Airline Transport Security) Officer. As the x-ray converyor scanned my things, I went through the entrance metal detector as everybody does. As I passed through it, there was no alarm at first but after 2 seconds, the alarm sounded. As I try to wonder what metal do I have in my body, a lady security officer told me, "Sir, you were chosen for a random security check and please step back." They asked me to enter to another door and one gentleman officer explained to me the routine on how he would check on my body. He asked me if there are any sensitive parts on my body and I said none. He also asked me if I prefer to be searched in private and I said I have no problem anywhere. Before he started, he explained to me how he would run his hands on my body. The routine was thorough and very instense. Although I have nothing to hide or to be afraid of, but since it is my first time to be subjected to such, I felt a little bit nervous. I have doubts. What if they will plant something on my bag? What if they will put some drugs on my body? Just like in the movies. Well, they found nothing except my BODY SHOP lotion. It was still full and I forgot to put it on my check-in luggage. It cost me OMR12 for that lotion. Well, what can I do? I can not insist to them to take it with me because they said it is beyond the limited amount. Rather than being detained just for the lotion, I went ahead. People were staring at me but I was not ashamed. I am even proud because out of all those passengers, I was chosen. In fact, I admire the US Security Officers and I salute them for doing an excellent job. For what ever reason they have they have chosen me for security search, I never mind at all because I have not done anything wrong. In fact, I should be thankful for them because they are really doing a great job and it was really a nice experience. No hassle at all.
Posted by George at 3:29 AM
Monday, October 24, 2011
Tomorrow Tuesday and Wednesday will be holiday ONLY for students at Shinas College of Technology. All staff members must report for work as usual... This is the second graduation and might be my last to attend to before I leave Oman. Two days without students in the College will be good for us because we can do our work like in QA, prepare quizzes and forthcoming midterm examination, to conduct meeting and plans for the Committee which I am heading, to mark all quiz papers so that students will not come to the office and ask for their marks even the exam was just an hour ago. When I returned the first quiz to my class in Computer Programming, the average mark of the students were 4 out of 10. The quiz was very easy, but I found out that they could not understand the question. WHY? Because it was written in English. The students are fond of memorizing the handout and when it comes to situational questions, they could not relate anymore. Sometimes the students make a guess with their answers. Anyway, so two days without students. What the heck... We still have to go to the College.
Posted by George at 11:16 AM
Sunday, October 23, 2011
Burden.... Is that how I feel about my student advisories? Sometimes... But with 148 students under my care, I may not be able to take care all of them. Plus having 16 hours of teaching, Coordinator of the Student Services Committee, member of the Domain 6 Quality Assurance, Time Table Coordinator, Department Registrar, Engineering website writer.... What else? Teaching... Examinations... Quizzes... Reports... Deadlines.... Patience.... More patience... Who will understand? How long is July 2012? How many months more?
Posted by George at 11:17 AM
Wednesday, October 19, 2011
I would like to say hello to Ms. Pradeepa. She is a Lecturer in IT and she told me that she had learned that I was writing my experiences in a webblog. Likewise to Ms. Manju. She is an ELC Lecturer and cornered me one day at the cafeteria and told me something about what I have posted recently. I thank them for somehow, they have read about my blog which is dedicated to all teachers in Oman. This is my way of expressing my gratitude, sentiments, experiences, problems, etc. with my life as a Teacher in Oman. Knowing that many people read my blog makes me stronger in writing what I feel about my superiors, Globenet - the company who hired and brought me to Oman, to my students, and to my fellow Teachers. Just to thought of it, makes me wonder... I wish I can stay longer in Oman...
Posted by George at 9:39 AM
Thursday, October 13, 2011
A few years back, I did not expect that I will stay in Oman for more than a year. In the year 2005, I was the ONLY and the FIRST Filipino Lecturer in Musanaah College of Technology. All staff members are either coming from Jordan, Iraq and most of all India which dominates the lecturers population. After more than a year in that College, they terminated me because of politics. I was accepted in Shinas College of Technology because of Dr. Nasser who believed in my capabilities. And I never let him down. More than 5 years until now, I am still in Shinas and being one of the most respected staff member of the College. Big responsibilties were given to me and some of them i turned down in order to avoid more headaches....
As July 2012 is fast approaching, I wonder what would be my life when I will settle in Canada. Will I be missing Oman? Will I be missing my friends here? What I will miss most in this country is the serenity and beauty of its sorroundings. Peace. Jogging. 50 degress celcius of temperature. Fish market. Quezon Avenue. Dubai Travels. Quiapo. Fairview. Al Ghaseel. Hyundai Tucson. Al Anhar Internet Cafe. Carrefoure. Safeer Mall. To name just a few.
Nine months from now... Step by step. Inshallah...
Posted by George at 6:40 AM
Tuesday, July 19, 2011
Early morning of Monday, exatly 9:00 AM was our flight from Manila to Davao via Philippine Airlines. It was so tiring because I have slept for two hours only. Why? Excited. Curious. After almost two hours of flight, we reached Davao and immediately after we took our luggage, we saw Ate Alma with her husband Kuya Henry. Wow we thought Kuya Henry was his brother... Hehehehe We went straight to Ate Alma's house we eat our lunch then headed to Ate Alma's resort. It took us almost one hour or more to reach the place. And when we arrive there.... WOW as in WOW talaga... May sariling swimming pool si Ate Alma with runnning water without chlorine... The water is so cold and just acouple of minutes I immediately dived to the pool. Wow too much refreshing... Ang sarap ng feeling na maglublob sa malamig na tubig. Parang therapeutic ang spring water. Over flowing the pool. Aside from swimming pool, Ate Alma's resort also has a billiard table, a karaoke bar, a palaisdaan, a mini zoo with turtles, python and an indian turkey. Our dinner was fantastic and we the slept almost 12 midnight. We had a very good night sleep waking 6 in the morning. Roni was the first one to wake up and took a bath. I wanted to dip again in the pool but I can not take the cold water. Instead just took a shower and eat our breakfast. Hotdog, danggit, itlog na maalat with kamatis and a hot coffee was so delighted. We left Ate Alma's resort at 9:30 in the morning headed straight to Eden Resort. But when we reach the place it was raining. We waited for an hour but the rain did not stopped. Instead we went to SM Davao, eat our lunch and bought some toiletries. We went then to fruit market and bought suha. Me and Richard shipped 5 kilos of suha to Manila. We then headed to People's Park and took some pictures. People, children, lovers, families, flowers. In the evening, we eat our dinner at Jack's Ridge overlooking a night lighted city of Davao. Tomorrow, we are heading to Cagayan de Oro.
Posted by George at 4:54 AM
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
This is the current scenario in one of the Colleges of Technology here in the Sultanate of Oman...
Scence No. 1
Student: Teacher, I want to repeat the quiz because I did not have good answers.
Teacher: I am sorry my student I dont repeat quizzes if your marks are low.
Student: Sure Mr? I will tell the Dean.
Teacher: Ok Ok Ok... When do you want to take the quiz?
Scene No. 2
Teacher: Good morning class. Today we will have quiz.
Students: No Mister!!!!!!(Shouting) We did not study!!!!!
Teacher: I told you last meeting that we will have quiz on this day!!!!
Student: I did not study last night Mr.
Teacher: Well then it is not my fault!
Student: Ok. Can I go now? I will go to the Dean!?!?!
Teacher: Ok Ok Ok When do you want the quiz?
These are few of the situations currentl and ongoing in the College. Students have power to remove Teachers, Head of Departments (Even an Omani Head of Department). The commulative grade point average to go to Diploma level from Certificate level have been lowered from 2.25 to 2.0. Students who have been dismissed from the College due to probation can go back and study again. Quality of teaching? Quality of learning? Quality Assurance? ($&%&#^$%&$^_@*$&#) Censored. No freedom of speech. Be silent. Think about your project in your country. As long as we are earning the currency, just swallow your pride. Just be close to students as what our new Head of Department told us. Give everything what they want. No questions asked. In other words, BE A SLAVE...
Posted by George at 10:59 AM
Sunday, March 6, 2011
There is an ongoing rumor that there will be a swap of deanship between Shinas and Musannah... If this is true what do you think of the outcome? Will it be good? Will it be beneficial to all concerned? Will it create a fair atmosphere among the stakeholders? (What's this, QA?) The power of the people. (I mean students) In one country in South East Asia, this power of the people revolutionized 25 years ago. What ever is the outcome of this rumor, I hope that it will build goodwill and friendship in the community. Are these the four way test? But I can not recall the other test... Celebrating? Not yet. Wait until the rumor becomes true. How fast the news flies... Wonderful. Exuberant.This is a rumor. It might not be true. Do not tell anyone. Keep it to yourself. No source of information. Just be silent. But why the letters are written in BOLD?
Posted by George at 7:08 AM
Wednesday, March 2, 2011
As I was driving on our way home, the Head of the Engineering Department called me. He was asking me about how the College was going, are there any students who came to the College today and I told him that we had a meeting with the Dean. The line was cut and when I arrived in my home we had a long chat on the phone. I told him what was the Dean's agenda since all the Lecturers and Staffs from three Departments were there. I told him that in one Department, the HoD have been transferred to the Ministry and then he told me he was also as well been transferred to the Ministry in Muscat. A shocking news from him which I think he doesn't deserve. The students who are complaining against him are not really the good students in the class.
Posted by George at 8:23 AM
Thursday, February 24, 2011
Last week the Dean of the College call for a meeting for all Teaching and Technical Staff. He discussed the rules and regulations to be imposed to all the staff. He stressed that if someone wanted to take a leave from his duty he should ask permission by writing. Of course everybody do that. We can not simply leave our post until the Head of the Department agrees. As part of the Teaching responsibility of the teaching staff he wanted to include the Quality Assurance. And other lots of blah blah blah...Most of the rules he laid out has been followed even from the previous administration. Complain against salary increase is none of his business. Complains of transportation coming to and going from the College is none of his business. But come to think of it. The College is far from the nearest city and most of the staff are staying in the city. A matter of consideration. Human heart. Humility. None of his business. I asked about why teachers should be given until 6 o'clock classes, he said this is the rule. The College should operate 8 in the morning till 8 in the night. Mmmmmmmmm. This is good. But where is the common sense? If classes can be handled and can be accommodated before 6 o'clock why not let the community suffer? When I asked this question, the Asst. Dean for Academics was upset at me. As I learned later on, this kind of question should not be brought up in the meeting. I was only asking. It is a crime to tell everyone the reason behind of putting classes classes when there are enough classrooms which can hold classes before 6 o'clock. Secondly... I suggested that as professionals, ETC should schedule their maintenance NOT during office hours or college operating hours. In their mind it was a complaint. I was not complaining about the services the ETC is offering but I am suggesting that ETC should shut down the NETWORK, when there are no classes, when people are not using the computer, when people are using the printer, when people are not using the College System... These are small things which lecturers are facing but these problems occur whenever the NETWORK is down. COMMON SENSE. Anyway, these sentiments are merely spoken for a reason that they are not listening at all. One thing I have learned from this. STOP. ENOUGH. Allah kareem....
Posted by George at 12:34 AM
Wednesday, February 23, 2011
Dictators in the world are now in trouble since people are revolting against their government. Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen, Bahrain, Libya, Morocco, Algeria and other Arab countries are now in the verge of people power revolution. The people of these countries are angry and wanted to have political reforms. Changing of constitutions, minorities should be represented in forming the government, rising of unemployment rate and the likes are the major issues the people wanted to change. But unlike these countries, people can revolt against their government. In one of the Colleges located somewhere in the world another kind of dictatorship is emerging. Teachers, students and technicians must end their timings and classes at 6 o'clock in the evening even there are free rooms and the rooms are not even maximized. Quality Assurance are being done by the Lecturers which is not even part of the Duties and Responsibilities, having more than 50 Advisees, more than 20 hours of teaching load. What can you ask for more? Come to think of it. How many people in the world do not have jobs? How many people in the world can afford to live and sleep in a comfortable home? How many in the world can eat regular meals everyday? Count your blessings. Just keep in mind the CURRENCY you are receiving every month. Are you happy? Are you satisfied? Do you have other options? Whew!!!!!!!! When will I learn?
Posted by George at 8:04 AM
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Most of Filipino teachers in Shinas College of Technology, are having too much task aside from being a teacher. My main responsibility is to teach, and that is according to the By-Laws of the Ministry of Manpower. But the last duty and responsibility stated was "Any other task assigned by the Head of the Department"... A BIG DEAL. Can not say NO. In my more than 6 years of staying in Oman, did I ever heard of someone from my superiors "Job well done", "Good job", "Keep up the good work"... One time I was so dead tired of writing a report almost no sleep because we have to meet the deadline, the Dean of our College back then was an Iraqi. I was part of domain number two in QA and the Dean asked for the report of the Engineering. When he asked regarding tables and representations and description and summary of the report, a female teacher went to him to direct him where the dean can find what he was looking for in our report. After the Dean was satisfied of our report he made a comment "She is good" and that instant she was made the "Employee of the Month" even she did nothing on the report. But I never complained because God knows it was my work. I was assigned to formulate the schedule of the engineering department for both teachers and students for almost 4 years now. In my experience, no one ever told me "Hey you have done a great job". Instead, what I heard from my new HOD is that the Assistant Dean was not happy because of wrong projection of sections. we have 36 courses total from certificate, diploma and higher diploma levels. Out of this 36 courses, only 3 has courses have unbalanced registered students. The Assistant Dean concluded that I had a wrong projection. Three out of 36 is wrong projection. Did he ever say "Thank you for doing a great job". NEVER!!!!!!!!! Instead you made a mistake of making incorrect projection.
Posted by George at 12:23 PM