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As early as 7 in the morning, busloads of students and youth groups were already lining up outside the World Trade Center for our Youth Entrepreneurship Summit last Sept. 27. Even the roads going to the venue were heavy with traffic. As the clock struck 8, the doors were opened and people swarmed in. It was amazing to see how many young Filipinos out there wanted to learn from the negosyo rock stars of today. It was overwhelming to know that there are a lot of them who want to be successful entrepreneurs one day.
Vice President Jejomar Binay and GMA Network president and CEO Atty. Felipe Gozon (who is also a Go Negosyo trustee) both joined me in the opening ceremonies. Atty. Gozon shared his tagumpay story in relation to the success of GMA Network. VP Binay also delivered his message to the youth about family, challenges and future. I admire both gentlemen’s respective tagumpay stories. Hard work has been a constant in their lives since childhood. The Filipino youth can definitely learn from their journeys.
Our partners like PLDT SME Nation’s Kat Luna-Abelarde, Unilever Philippines president Fernando Fernandez, and BPI Family Savings Bank president Teodoro “TG” Limcaoco also came to support the youth entrepreneurial advocacy. Joining them were PCE trustees Injap Sia, Ray Gapuz, Rosalind Wee, Carla Limcaoco, Prudencio Garcia, and Corazon Dayro Ong.
As we did in the first Youth Summit last year, we recognized Inspiring Young Filipino Entrepreneurs. In Go Negosyo, we are proud to present and showcase the stories of different inspiring entrepreneurs with remarkable negosyo journeys. We consider entrepreneurs the rock stars or celebrities of today. It is our vision for Filipinos, especially the youth, to aspire to be like these entrepreneurs one day.
This year’s Go Negosyo Inspiring Young Filipino Entrepreneurs are Happy and Viva Andrada of F*Art, Reymont Choachuy of Noble House, RJ David of Sulit.Com, Anton Diaz of OurAwesomePlanet.Com, creative entrepreneur Tricia Gosingtian, Cris Guerrero of Ideal Events, Valerie Mendoza of Y3L Hand-Painted Shoes, Mary Grace Santos of Li’l People Enterprises, Richard Sanz of Food Asia Corporation, and Timothy Sarvida of El Buono Pizza. We also recognized a special set of awardees — Inspiring Young Filipino Social Entrepreneurs. They are Reese Fernandez of Rags2Riches, Mark Ruiz and Bam Aquino of Microventures and Hapinoy, and Dylan Wilk, Anna Meloto-Wilk and Camille Meloto of Gandang Kalikasan. I featured some brief trivia about them in my previous “Tagumpay” column. Congratulations to this year’s awardees.
We are thankful and proud to have two of this country’s renowned inspirational speakers join us in the Youth Summit — Brother Bo Sanchez and Francis Kong.
Our young audience was motivated by the powerful messages and sharing of Brother Bo and his companion Alvin Barcelona. They corrected the notion that being rich is bad, that it is not bad to be wealthy and we must strive to do our best and become successful so we may be able to help others. Being poor and lazy does not make one closer to God. I remember the parable of the talents, which urges all of us to find our own talent and put it to good use, not only for our benefit but for others as well.
As always, Francis Kong never fails to motivate the crowd. He shared his beginnings and how he was able to turn around his past mediocre life into one that can bring about anyone’s greatness. He is a perfect example of how anyone has a great chance to win in this life. One simply has to set his priorities and work on it. Also, one has to be God-centered and show concern for others.
Thank you also to Manuel Tordesillas of ATR KimEng and international speaker Tommy Hutchinson of I-Genius, who shared their expertise on money talk and social entrepreneurship, respectively.
The rest of the day was filled with forums on hav-ing the right Go Negosyo attitude to engage in entrepreneurship through technology. I was amazed to see our Angelpreneurs and Go Negosyo mentors and entrepreneurs have such a great time on stage sharing their stories and tips with the young audience. It was also great to observe the youth as they enjoyed the diversity of our program. I saw some serious students intently taking down notes, maybe so that they would not forget or miss out on any topic. There were also some who were taking things lightly — sitting on the floor and treating the whole experience as if it was one big workshop.
I even received a lot of messages on Facebook from those who attended the Youth Summit. JJ Sitjar from Bacolod City said, “Hi, Sir Joey. I attended the youth summit and I really enjoyed and learned a lot. It inspires me to do better in school because I want to be one of them (the successful entrepreneurs) someday. Thank you very much for sharing your knowledge and experiences as entrepreneurs. God bless.”
Here’s another message from Maycie Valdez: “I am one of the students from Muntinlupa Business High School who attended the Go Negosyo seminar last week. It was really great. I’ve learned so many things and I was really inspired.”
Thank you also to JJ and Maycie for their messages and for being part of the Youth Summit.
Our young audience learned a number of trade secrets from our awardees, trustees and the Go Negosyo entrepreneurs and partners like youth idol Chris Tiu, Emerson Atanacio, Louie Gutierrez, Alan Escalona, Butch Salvador, Rosanna Llenado, Francis Simsim, Amil Azurin, Dr. Al Villarica, Aileen Apolo, Carlo Ople, Alvin Tan, Carlo Guerrero, Benedict Carandang, Dennis Ng, Atty. John Maclang, and Pocholo Gonzales.
“The youth summit was a lot of things,” says our resident Angelpreneur Dean Pax Lapid. “But, more importantly, it was an event where young minds made up their choice for a negosyo life. During our summit, the youth learned the secrets of the masters. In time, they will understand their value towards business success.” I would also like to greet Dean Pax a happy birthday (and I won’t mention the number anymore). Go Negosyo is indeed very proud and fortunate to have you as part of the Go Negosyo family. We wish more blessings and more negosyos to come your way.
Another resident Angelpreneur, Ping Sotto, shared positive thoughts on the success of the summit. “It’s very encouraging to note, based on the ‘explosive’ attendance, that the entrepreneurial spirit among the youth has ignited and hopefully will sustain a steady burn,” he said.
Thank you to Dean Pax, Ping and to the other Angelpreneurs like Joy Abaquin, Reuel Virtucio, Ed Pilapil, Tess Dimaculangan, and Butz Bartolome, who shared their expertise in our plenary program and in the seminar room. Our partners from PLDT SME Nation, Smart, Splash, BPI Family, Condura and Bizwiz Resources also provided relevant and applicable tools and concepts in the seminar room. Thank you to our other Angelpreneurs like Josiah Go, Paulo Tibig, Ardy Roberto, Carlo Calimon, Jorge Winiekie, George Saguinsin, Benel Lagua, Luis Cruz, and our executive director Mon Lopez, who shared their time and expertise with the people seeking advice in the one-on-one booth mentoring sessions.
It was definitely overwhelming and heartwarming to witness almost 30,000 Filipino youth inspired and motivated to Go Negosyo.
E-mail me at email@example.com. Join me on Facebook and visit www.gonegosyo.net. Watch the Go Negosyo: Kaya Mo! show on QTV every Saturday and Sunday at 8-8:30 a.m., with replays on NBN every Tuesday from 9:15-10:15 p.m.