The Activated

By Odilon Picaso (Cyclosome)
Batch Cyclosome during the celebration of BIO 30 Week 2016
(L-R: Pam, Albert, Faith, Cy, Hannah, Coco, Andrea, Joana, Leann, Camille, Odi, Carl, Angela)

What drove together 13 different individuals into joining a pool of young scientists is a common mission. They have accepted the challenge to provide genuine leadership and service to the campus and the nation though Genetics.  They are called 'Cyclosome'.

Cyclosome is a protein complex with specific and regulated protein-ubiquitin ligase activity that tags mitotic regulators for degradation at the end of mitosis. Cyclosome tags proteins that hinder the activation of enzymes needed by the cell as it undergoes mitosis. It plays a big role in metaphase-anaphase transition. Without it, anaphase will not proceed, inducing cell death.

Just like the cyclosome, these 13 activated individuals who have joined Genesoc are driven by a certain 'calling.’ They’ve pinpointed the worst in them, most specifically their past weaknesses and mistakes, and have turned them into something beautiful. 

Now, let’s meet Batch Cyclosome. A batch united by one advocacy–to promote the science of genetics to advance the quality of human life. 

Hannah: The Adventurous Young Lass

Hannah de Jesus is a junior student under the BS Biology program. At a young age, she showed great interest in medicine. In fact, this interest drove her to be a part of the Junior Red Cross Youth Club in Colegio de San Juan de Letran - Calamba before she entered UPLB. She prefers to watch movies and series on medicine such as Grey's Anatomy during her free time. However, she’s not just an aspiring medical doctor who excels in academics. She is adventurous.

One would see her as a courageous lady who is open to completely new things. She takes pleasure in moments that get the adrenaline rushing in her veins. Hannah's friends would describe her as a cheerful, calm girl who will laugh at even the corniest jokes. She is funny in her own way and that makes her fun and interesting to be with.

Hannah has been appointed as the head of the Finance and Socials Committee of the NIGQC 2016 and Genetics Camp 2017, respectively.

Cy: The Medical Doctor of Tomorrow

Cyrelle Brosoto is a junior Biology student majoring in Genetics. She plans to pursue Medicine after acquiring her undergraduate degree. Inspired by her preschool classmate's simple slum book question about her ambition, to which she answered “to become a doctor,” Cy is definitely on the right track towards her dreams. She was fond of playing doctor when she was a kid. She even got a medical kit toy which further fueled her interest in Medicine.

Her mind told her to complete an engineering degree but her heart strongly clung to Medicine. Cy followed her heart and chose the road that leads to her dream. What her friends admire about her is her determination and passion to achieve her dreams–for her self, her family and for the nation. She believes diligence is the vehicle that will take her to the future that she set for herself.

Currently, Cy holds the headship of the Technicals Committee of Genetics Camp 2017.

Camille: The Girl Scout Forever

Camille is another junior Biology student. She hails from St. Mary Magdalene, Magdalena, Laguna. She graduated Valedictorian in her elementary school and is an active scout during her high school years. Camille served as the Secretary of Junior Journalist Guild of Laguna. Her alma mater, Pedro Guevara Memorial National High School, shaped the way she is today. She had attended several camps and activities of the Girl Scouts and these activities inspired her to become an advocate of change. She primarily advocates for feeding programs that are funded by fun runs. 

She currently serves as the Head of the Food and Collectibles Committee of Genetics Camp 2017.

Albert: The Soft-Hearted Giant

Albert Torre is one of the star players that gave Genesoc its glorious two-peat championship in men's basketball. He is tall and so physically formidable that a small guy would find him intimidating–but he is not. A decade ago, his family suffered the loss of his father. It was a major heartbreak for the family from which stemmed many difficult struggles. His family had been financially shaky and his mother took the responsibility to hold their family together. Amidst all the terrible experiences that Albert's family had been into, they found a light that they allowed to intensify into hope and faith.

This giant believes that having faith in God, together with hardwork, is the key to overcome even the hardest problems. They had hope and this hope cleared the path that led to the solutions of their problems. All these were precious experiences that taught Albert humility and strength. Apart from those characteristics, his height and good looks gave him the ticket to represent GeneSoc in Mr. and Ms. PalaCASan 2016. 

Pam: The Bibo Kid

Since she was a child, Pamela Mendoza, Pam, had been an enthusiast of music and pageantry. At the age of six, she was crowned Little Miss Pearl in a beauty contest at her school, San Beda College - Alabang. Pam took singing lessons and performed at a concert when she was 7. She graduated high school with flying colors but beyond the academics, her interest in soccer grew immensely. She fell in love with the sport which led her to eventually join the varsity team as a midfielder. Currently, Pam is a member of the UPLB Women’s Football Varsity. 

She dreams to become an OB/Gyne to help researchers find a cure for fetal abnormalities. On a normal day, Pam is the typical “clown” friend who makes everyone's day a little bit brighter and happier by cracking some of the jokes up her sleeve. Her friendliness earned her the title 'Bibo Kid' in the batch.        

Faith: The Pokemon

A pet lover and a faithful worshipper, Faith Tambalo, known to her close friends as Peyto, is a biology student who majors in Microbiology. She aspires to attain a career in Medicine to address the health problems in the country. This thought could be traced from the time Faith was devastated by her parents’ separation.

She was helpless at that time and was financially and emotionally unstable. Despite the sad story that troubled Faith and her family, she was unfazed. Faith treated everything as a challenge. She had to move on. With the faith in God and her family supporting each other, they recovered with new perspectives. To be contented with everything she has now is what Faith learned through the process.

Her love for the organization brought her two headships. She is both the Logistics and Accommodations Committee Head of NIGQC 2016 and Genetics Camp 2017.

Joana: The Batch Leader

Joana Marie Cruz graduated Valedictorian from Calamba City Science High School (CCSHS). She has been and continuous to be an active student. In fact, she served as the president of the Supreme Student Government (SSG) - Calamba for three consecutive years. She also served as the editor-in-chief of Inheritors, the official publication of CCSHS, for two consecutive years. Her writing career had wonderful highlights, one of which was when she won sixth place in the 2014 Regional Schools Press Conference - News Writing Category. Currently, she is taking up BS Biology and was awarded as one of the Top 10 BS Biology students in the 2013 UP College admission Test (UPCAT).

Most importantly, Joana is a strong woman. She is the batch leader of Cyclosome and the Awards Committee Head of Genetics Camp 2017.

Andrea: The Wondering Wildlife Geneticist

Andrea Kariza Formantes is a young geneticist at heart. Genetics caught her interest during a class discussion in second year high school biology. In this class, her teacher formally introduced her to the wonders of genetics and how this field has improved man's quality of life. This sparked Andrea's dream to contribute in the field of genetics someday. She is currently taking BS Biology major in Genetics with a preserved interest in Wildlife Biology. Andrea loves fieldworks especially when they are about Wildlife Biology and Ecology. In the future, she will be a force to be reckoned with in the field of Wildlife Biology.

Currently, Andrea is the Secretary-General of PalaCASan, a semester-long sports fest for the organizations based in the UPLB College of Arts and Sciences (CAS). She also serves as the Sponsorship and Finance Committee Head of the National Intercollegiate Genetics Quiz Contest (NIGQC) 2016 and Genetics Camp 2017, respectively, which are both participated by schools from all over the Philippines. This is how Andrea gives back to the organization. 

Coco: The Coconut

Studying BS Biology major in Microbiology, senior student, Nicole Gaytos, better known as Coco, aims to have an equipped mind that is ready for the greater challenges in life after college–“The Real World,” so she says. Coco enjoys life as she does with academics. She is probably the person to tell everyone to stop overreacting in situations that require a calm and peaceful mind. The things that free her mind and soul from the heavy loads of academics would be music, stories, friends and family.

During her four-year stay in the university, Coco has snuck a peek into the gist of life. She realized that one cannot focus on only one thing while expecting to be happy with everything. She once thought that studying was the single most important thing in being a student, but come sophomore and junior years, orgs and parties happened to her. She believes that the organizations she joined and parties she attended taught her important lessons in life–discipline and responsibility. She strongly believes that people don’t learn through books alone. She stresses that a huge part of learning comes from daily interactions with people–being people-smart. This particular skill is a huge prerequisite in the 'Real World' and Coco is determined to master this side by side with her academics. 

Odi: The Youth Leader

Currently a junior forestry student, Odilon Picaso got a taste of catastrophe when his family was struck by the most devastating storm to ever land on their serene home. Last semester, his mother had been hit by a stroke–a hemorrhagic stroke. He was about to file a leave of absence (LOA) to UPLB but his father didn’t allow him to because it might cause his mother more pain. Together, Odi's family fought fear–the fear of losing the light of their home. His mother regained health and his family attributed it to God's healing power.

Odi believes that the youth is competent and multi-skilled. They are energetic and are equipped with a fresh mindset which leaders should consider. As an advocate of youth involvement in policy-making processes, Odi sees a future with the youth as the key players. He dreams of a day when the youth are well-represented and their voices truly heard. He has been advocating climate change resiliency since his sophomore year at the university and has participated in numerous local and international fora and conferences that tackle climate change mitigation and adaptation. He believes that the youth must be heard and included in the policy-making for the youth inherits the future.

Currently, Odi serves as the Genetics Camp Steering Committee Head with a promise to bring the national event to greater heights.

Leann: The Strong, Independent Woman

Leann Suiton, the girl who never planned to be in the University of the Philippines Los Baños at all but still ended up in the very university. She is a native of Los Baños and has spent her Elementary and High School years in Maquiling School Inc. (MSI), a private school situated in the UPLB campus. This is the main reason why she wanted to spend her college years outside the town. However, due to some unexpected and must-not-be-told series of events while she was studying in a different school, her path towards becoming a lawyer took a huge turn into the path of a medical doctor's.

She believes that having an organization for UP students is not necessary but joining one would surely complete the university experience. So she joined the organizations which she believe are the perfect fit for her character and interests.

For Leann, being with people with whom she shares common interests with is a way of relaxation. Even before joining the organization, she already knew that this will take her to places that she had never been to. She never regretted being a Genesoc member because it gave and continues to give her the best set of experiences and memories that she hadn’t even thought of before. 

Angela: The Lady of Two Worlds

Angela Arrosa is a girl of two different worlds. She is a full-time junior civil engineering student with a full-time passion for genetics. During her first year of staying in the university, she invested her time studying biological and agricultural sciences. After that, she transferred to another field–civil engineering. Even after shifting to a distant field, Angela chose to join The UPLB Genetics Society out of her fondness and curiosity for the science that this organization promotes.

Despite Angela's hectic schedule, she still manages to have fun and chill with her orgmates at IBS when she is now based in CEAT. She actively participates in the organization’s activities and makes sure that she's being as productive and as efficient as she could be. Because of GeneSoc, she grew into a more professional and passionate individual. To her, Genesoc is more than a family and a lifestyle.

Carl: The Happy-Go-Lucky Dude

An alumnus of the pioneer and well-known science high school of the Philippines, Manila Science High School, Carl Joshua Bote has a lot of potential in everything academic. He is a self-confessed sloth and a YOLO kind of guy. He is opinionated on the current political issues that trouble the Filipino nation and reads a lot about them. He learns about these issues though all the available media platforms. This habit made him a person with a critical and firm stand on almost everything political.

Carl has a lighter side, too. He is adventurous and curious. He loves to travel and his biggest dream journey is to travel the region that is not only famous for its spicy food but also for its majestic sceneries – Bicol.  He dreams to climb the world famous Mayon Volcano, to swim in the seas of Caramoan in Camarines Sur and to attend a rodeo festival in Masbate. More than that, Carl has an advocacy. He helps conserve biodiversity in his little but genuine ways. He believes that the forests need human attention more than ever.