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Never Shift, Stay in Engineering – Topnotcher’s Advice to Struggling Students

We were given 5 years in engineering. Spend that time learning your entire prospectus and not just during the review.

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Stay in Engineering!


Metallurgical engineering is not a popular course in the Philippines.

With only three universities offering the degree program, any metallurgical engineering student or its graduate would often get asked what the course is about.

Engr. Aliza Marie Salces on her YouTube tutorials

To give anyone an overview of what it is, metallurgical engineering focuses on preparing and processing minerals and metals using different efficient methods for different applications.

Metallurgical engineers study, design, implement, innovate and improve different processes that transform metals and minerals into useful products.

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And just like any other engineering field, metallurgical engineering students in the Philippines must take a licensure exam in order for them to gain the “Engr.” title.

The licensure exam was held on October 11 to 13. Topping the board exam is Aliza Marie Salces, a graduate from Mindanao State University – Iligan Institute of Technology.

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In this feature story, Aliza shares her journey from her college days up to the moment she found out that she passed (and topped) the licensure exam.

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How was life like for you back in college?

I am a dormitory-school-dormitory type of student back in college until my 4th year in college. 

I became a member of the college executive council.

I get to supervise some events and had to spend overnight at school just to make props. 

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Since then college life became more fun and challenging.

Read more  He Failed the Exam 6 Times But Emerged 1st Placer in Engineering Licensure

In college, I learned so many things but most important of the lessons I learned came from my experiences I’ve had with people. 

I think they made me a wise person.

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What did you do to prepare for the exam? 

The first thing I did was create timetable for the materials I need to read, problems I need to solve and facts that I need to memorize.

I bought self-review engineering mathematics book.

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I checked my progress every week. I’ve listed 7 books but ended up completing only 1 but for the review materials I was able to read them completely.

Indeed, It’s not in how many books you’ve read but on how deep you understand each lessons.

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What was your comfort food when you are feeling stressed out during review?

Comfort foods: pizza, spaghetti and milk tea.

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What as the most difficult challenge you’ve had while reviewing for the exam?

Finishing our thesis paper.

While our adviser allowed us to graduate without the hardbound copy of our thesis, she wouldn’t allow us to get Transcript of Records which is one of the requirement for filling of application.

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So, we worked on our thesis manuscript also during the review period.

Requesting for the TOR also took time because of the processing period (7 working days). Luckily, someone helped us expedite the processing time. 

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Do you have any quirky habit while you were preparing to take the board exam?

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Yes. I developed a weird desire for outing (camping, swimming, anything that involves outdoor activities).

I guess it’s my body telling me to take a break.

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What’s the first thing that came into your mind right after you took the exam?

The first thing that came into my mind was that finally I’ll be able to get enough sleep.

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Our exam lasted for 3 days and for 3 days I woke up 3 in the morning, each examination subject lasted 8 hours.

I get to sleep in the evening at 11 pm.

So I really felt relieved knowing that the exam was over. 

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How did it feel topping this year’s licensure exam? 

I was speechless and excited at the same time. 

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Did you expect to be number one?

No. For me, passing the board exam is already a great accomplishment. 

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What do you plan on doing next?

I want to have an experience in mineral processing industry before proceeding to graduate school.

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What is your advice for young engineering students? 

1. Never shift, stay in engineering. 

2. You’ll be rewarded with the same effort you put in your study (sometimes more). 

3. We were given 5 years in engineering. Spend that time learning your entire prospectus and not just during the review.

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Engineering Topnotchers’ Advice

He Failed the Exam 6 Times But Emerged 1st Placer in Engineering Licensure

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7 shares, 166 points
Engr. Ninez Hernandez
A sensitive flirt, an awkward tease and a metallurgical engineer, surprisingly.


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