Og, the Great and Powerful

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The 2013 American adventure film, “Oz, the Great and Powerful’’  tells a prequel story of fantasy and adventure of how an ordinary person tricked his way into becoming The Wizard saving the beleaguered Emerald City.

In reality, the fantasy of becoming The Wizard, along with all his magical illusions, to save a kingdom from doom does not really exist. Still, dreaming can make a difference to make our lives more meaningful.

This is exactly what Ryan Espayos did. Dream big in spite of the odds. This Envergan lodi is definitely someone who stands out in a crowd not just because of his height. Og-og, as family and friends call him, won the Most Outstanding Male Student of the Year in the recently concluded Benjamin V. Tan Search of the Lambda Kappa Phi. This recognition cites his compelling story of focus, perseverance and success.

Og-og lived a good life but life took a 360-degree turn when his father met an accident a few years back. His family started to live in a more practical way to make ends meet and to finance the recuperation of his father. This left a deep impression in Og’s mind to prioritize the importance of family and to live one’s dreams for the people he cares about.

In college, he initially stayed away from the limelight. But he was constantly reminded of his childhood dream of making his family proud. Thus, he loosened up and tried participating in various university activities to increase his value as a student. The journey was not easy.  Some of the academic contests he joined did not turn out the way he wanted. Not every search he joined worked in his favor. But his exposure will soon bear fruit.

In a span of one year, he got into the prestigious Aboitiz Future Leaders Business Summit and ASSET XV: Search for Top 50 Accounting Students. In his journey, Og looks back at the people to whom he owes his successes. All the academic and leadership achievements that he has collected to date are not only a perfect affirmation of his hard work but also of the foundation his family and this institution has inculcated in him.

Beneath his big physique is a genuinely kind heart which he is always willing to share. To many, he’s a friend who never fails to make conversations fun and enjoying. He’s that classmate who’ll transform a dull day into something engaging. He’s that gentle soul who’ll show you how much he cares and empathizes with you.

He’s the personification of what optimism is. And maybe, as a wizard, he weaves magic in everything he does. His indomitable spirit to seize opportunities and transform them into achievements is the key to his trickery.

Going to class each day with Og-og, having merienda breaks, needing a friend to count on, and in general, meeting someone like Ryan Chris is something precious, something magical, something great and powerful in this world of harsh realities. We can embrace his ways to become wizards ourselves, saving our own kingdoms of dreams and weaving our own brand of magic.

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