Transforming Civil Servants Through Social Connectedness

Changes have become rapid since the worldwide spread of coronavirus. They greatly affected major aspects of our lives encompassing the dynamics of our relationships with family, friends, and even colleagues. Nevertheless, we have demonstrated remarkable resilience, persevering through these challenges and maintaining our connections as we work towards recovery. Now, observing the current situation in the Philippines, it is evident that we have greatly improved- a signal to forge blissful memories together again and appreciate everyone’s significant contributions after a long and uphill battle.

These have been the primary objectives of the Human Resource Management Office (HRMO) of the University of Makati (UMak) in celebrating the 123rd anniversary of the Philippine Civil Service.

“Simple lang, lahat ng empleyado ay ma-feel nila na ang presence nila ay mahalaga”

Ms. Marilou Neuvo, Head of HRMO, shared her vision for organizing the activities during the annual celebration. Guided by this vision, they carefully designed programs with the goal of fostering connections among civil servants while developing personal and professional growth. Another is to recognize their invaluable active participation in transforming the university.

Social Connectedness and Spiritual Fulfillment

The celebration commenced with a flag-raising ceremony led by the management committee, aiming to inspire the employees and convey their heartfelt appreciation for the dedicated service of civil servants at the university. Additionally, Atty. Neil-San Patag, the Head of the Makati City Human Resource Development Office, shared his admiration for UMak’s highly effective and productive employees. Wrapping up the opening salvo, HRMO recognized and awarded the employees who wore the best Filipiniana attire.

Dr. Francisco Lambojon Jr., winner of the Best Filipiniana Award for the male category, and Ms. Myra Grace Rosales, winner of the Best Filipiniana for the female category (Photos: CIC)

As the festivities continued, a Thanksgiving Mass was conducted to express gratitude for the strength and blessings that employees had received over the course of the year. Subsequently, the UMak community came together for a traditional breakfast gathering known as the Almusalan. During this gathering, everyone enjoyed a delectable spread of food while participating in meaningful conversations that fostered enjoyable and wholesome social connections.

Intellectual Growth and Physical Wellness

With the demands of society, civil servants must be holistically ready to face challenges in the workplace. Hence, their mind and bodies should be constantly trained. To achieve this, a series of training were prepared by the HRMO such as book writing, financial literacy, and leave administration seminars.

Dr. Carolina Duka, an international magazine writer, inspires the employees of the University of Makati to write their “Magnum Opus”, or their masterpiece, and publish it through well-known publications.

Also, employees were engaged in sports activities such as badminton, basketball, and volleyball, providing them the opportunity to maintain fitness and build connections with their old and new colleagues.


UMak as an institution is mandated to contribute to the body of knowledge. However, going the extra mile to create materials that will be the catalyst for students’ development is highly commendable. Thus, HRMO continued the annual “Parangal sa mga Manunulat”, an awarding ceremony for employees who successfully published their books.

HRMO recognizes the UMak book writers during “Book Writer Recognition Day 2023”. (Photos: UMak/CIC)

The University of Makati has grown beaded with awards. But, it would not be possible without the gems and jewels that have been dedicated to reinforcing the values, principles, mission, and vision of the university. Among the exceptional nominees, three have shone the brightest. Mr. Romeo T Reyes from the Institute for Social Development and Nation Building for the Skilled Worker category, Mr. Arjun Andrade from the Center for Integrated Communications for the Level 1-2 Administrative Employee category, and Prof. Diosdado Macapagal from the College of Technology Management for the Faculty Member category.

Awardees of “Ang Pinakanatatanging Kawani” in Level I/II Administrative Employee kawani, skilled worker. and faculty category.

Awardees and Nominees for Natatanging Kawani (Photo: UMak/CIC)

Other Noteworthy Activities

Aside from these HRMO initiatives, there were several other noteworthy activities that took place during the Philippines Civil Service celebration month. Various departments and colleges within the university took part in enriching and enjoyable endeavors only the employees but also their first clients, the students.

The College of Arts and Letters and the Center for Culture and the Arts collaborated to launch a lively street dance competition known as “Timpalak Tagakan.” In addition, the Center for Quality Management and Development introduced its training series, ELEVATE, aimed at empowering all university employees. Lastly, the Center for University Research kicked off a program called “Capability Building on Curriculum Development, Instructional, and Assessment,” featuring resource speakers from national and international institutions

Prof Melanie Moraga-Leaño talks about Building Your Personal Brand in ELEVATE this September 29, 2023 (Photos: UMak/CIC)

The Center for University Research conducts a workshop for qualitative research at Room 701, HPSB. Dr. Melvin A. Jabar and Dr. Zaldy C. Collado from De La Salle University shared the methods and techniques in research writing. The participants were also introduced to NVivo, a software for data analysis. (Photo: USMO)

Serving the public can be overwhelming, mentally taxing, and exhausting for many individuals. It causes stress that leads to a decline in motivation. Hence, giving the employees an opportunity to unwind in order to gain new perspectives in the working environment may lead to returning their drive to become better employees. Also, by strengthening their social connectedness, everyone will make healthy decisions that will improve the interactions and systems in the university. It will result in a strengthened sense of community and unexpected remarkable transformations.

Written By: Adrian P. Miranda CIC/USMO Adviser