TACLOBAN CITY- Until now, Fred Lawrence Samante could not still believe that he aced this year’s medical technology board examinations, beating more than 2,000 others.
The 21-year old native of Capoocan town in Leyte garnered 91.40 percent to top the MedTech examination held last January 21-22, this year with the results released last Feb.9, this year.
While Samante may have the intelligence to pass and eventually top the examinations, the current circumstances made him wary.
For one, the schedule of their examinations have been reset at least three times, citing the current coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic as reason.
According to Samante, who finished his course at St. Scholastica’s College-Tacloban, the first scheduled for their examination was on March 2020.
But this was abruptly cancelled after the national government declared a lockdown amid the entry of COVID-19 in the country.
The examination was reset to April of the same year but was again scrapped to September until finally it was held last Jan.21 to 22 of this year.
“Of course, I was devastated the first time it was cancelled considering that I made a lot of preparations and reviews already. It was cancelled for three times that it somehow affected me, my concentrations,” he said in a phone interview.
“That is why, when it was announced that the examination will be held on January, I could barely gave my (100 percent) focus as this might be cancelled again,” Samante said.
But with strong support of his parents and younger sibling, Samante gave his all for the examination held at the RTR Medical School, this city.
Social distancing and the wearing of face shield and mask were strictly observed during the grueling examination, he said.
Samante took online reviews and another self-review for 12 to 15 hours a day, only taking respite to eat and have a walk to make him relax.
And of course, prayers, too.
“My mama really cried when she learned that I topped the examination. I was also ecstatic because all my efforts bore fruit,” Samante, who want to proceed to medicine, said.
His mother, Loriebel works as an elementary teacher at Leyte Central School in Leyte-Leyte town, while his father, Freddy is the chairman of their village.
His younger sister, Florence Ingrid, 17 is now on her Grade 7.
Asked his immediate plan, the board top board passer said that he received offers from their school to teach but is incline to accept the offer of the review centers where he took a review as a lecturer.
“I have to work first considering that a medical course is quite expensive and I don’t like to add further financial burden to my family,” Samante said. (JOEY A. GABIETA)