Life Lately: Why I was MIA this Summer



It’s been a month and a day since I last updated my blog and with good reason. I took my required month-long on-the-job training (or internship) at a company to finally apply the principles I've studied and learned at school. Chemical Engineering, which is what I’m taking up, is known as the jack-of-all-trades course and I can get into a LOT of fields such as food, pharmaceuticals (including cosmetics), petrochemicals and more, but those are the top fields I want to specialize in.

I considered 4 companies: Shell, DOLE, Holcim and RDL. Shell was my top choice because since high school, my teachers have been telling us that there's money in petroleum because it's a need; it will always have a market. I applied early (around January) because I know they get a lot of applications because aside from being a global company, according to some forums I've read, they also give good allowances ("parang sweldo ng iba", read one comment). If ever I did get accepted at Shell, I would get the chance to spend summer elsewhere (Luzon maybe--to get the chance to see my sister and my friends). In the end, I chose RDL Pharmaceutical Laboratories, a company that started in Davao that is known for their astringents, facial cleansers, creams and lotions. A huge factor in this decision was the fact that the plant is SO near my house!! I could just ride a trike and take a five-minute walk then there's the gate of the plant! :)

Research and Development

We were required to come in at 8am-5pm Mondays to Fridays, and Saturdays if we wanted to. This was quite an adjustment for me cause my weekends are sacred, LOL. (Saturdays are for going out, Sundays are for actual rest). One of the first few things I realized was that how was I to go out and meet people if work was 6, if not 7 days a week? Haha #farrahproblems

Water Treatment Department

But seriously though, I thought about that cause after work, I went to the gym pa. It was all in good timing cause the afternoons were hot and by the time I finished work, it wouldn't be as hot. (Though as a consequence, I had to contend with a LOT of people at the gym, which I wasn't used to. Boo) This is actually one of the reasons why I wasn't able to blog: by the time I'd get home after my workout, I'd be so tired that I'd go to bed earlier than usual.

About two weeks before my internship with RDL was over, I heard back from the Shell office in Davao! That really surprised me because one, I never thought I'd hear back from them and two, I didn't even know their office in Davao was open to on-the-job trainees! I had to turn the internship down though because it was good for 3 months and I was almost done with the 240 hours needed to fulfill my summer credit anyway.

with my co-OJTs :)

Overall, I liked the experience at RDL. I observed that the employees had so much respect for each other and for us. I had heard of "horror stories" from previous batches saying male employees would leer and jeer at female OJTs and I'm glad that didn't happen to me and my co-OJTs. I also thought that the workers seemed content at their jobs, that they were paid fairly; I didn't hear any complaints. I learned a lot because we were assigned to different departments every week--four in total. The supervisors had so much trust in us--they allowed us to do our jobs with minimal supervision. I also appreciated the company more: imagine a company from Davao is able to produce and keep up with the demand to distribute products not just in the Philippines but abroad too?

After the internship, some of my classmates and I met up at school and we agreed on something: although it was good to see each other again, it was weird coming back to school after our work experience. Just. So. Weird. I think for me, the best part of OJT was getting the feel of that hands-on experience but at the same time, I also appreciated that I didn't have to do the same thing everyday for the rest of the year (or five, depending how long I could grow in the company or take the monotony, whichever came first). I mean, I am glad I don't have to decide what job I would be taking just yet. #commitmentissues

I’m gonna have to reset my mindset to school mode once school starts this June but I’m gonna make the most of it cause it's my last year of school--no more breaks and waking up late when I actually get a job, another thing I realized at work.

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