Juan of South: See Others and Customers

by Guillermo “Cocoy” A. Danipog III, FEBRUARY 2021

CARL JAZER C. SACLOLO, Asset Management

CJ was a product of the third batch of Metro Pacific Tollway’s Technical and Professional (TAP) Program. The 18-month program aims to mold trainees into professionals who specialize in the different fields of toll road management. To that end, they were exposed to various departments of the company for them to see the bigger picture of how the business is being run. Frankly speaking, CJ did not leave a mark on me during his stay with AMD in MPT South; as millennials would put it, CJ could be considered as a “lowkey” type of person – he distances himself from others at most times and rarely opens up to anyone, heck even the latest posts from his social media accounts are still from the previous year. It is not until he became a part of the AMD that I truly got to know who he is – a passionate, driven, and principled individual.

CJ developed his love for the field of engineering in the most typical manner you could ever imagine – by playing with Lego blocks. While other children around his age were busy playing outside, a then-8-year-old CJ chose to stay inside the comforts of their home and build model structures of various sizes and shapes using plastic Lego bricks. In high school, CJ furthered this interest of his by choosing technical drafting as an elective. So when it came the time when he needed to decide on what degree to pursue in college, choosing Civil Engineering was an easy choice.

Aside from his fascination for engineering marvels, CJ is also a brilliant musician. “I grew up in a musically-inclined family,” the 23-year-old shared. “Lahat sa amin either marunong tumugtog o kumanta.” Back in his formative years, CJ had his formal training in playing the piano. On the other hand, it was in the church where he learned how to play the guitar. CJ was able to hone his skills some more when he reached high school. He considers this period as his renaissance as it was in this time that he was able to regain his interest in music. “Maganda ‘yung music program sa school namin,” he proudly said. “Dito ako nag-start mag-aral na talaga ng music theory at magbasa ng mga nota at piyesa.” In 2012, CJ’s band, “Surreal,” even won first place in their school’s battle of the bands, with him behind the keys. After being able to read through piles of music sheets, he took his musical skills up a notch higher by teaching himself how to play the violin. To this date, CJ continues to play for their church’s band and at times, he does us, his officemates, a favor and plays a song or two for us to jam during lunch breaks.

After graduation from the TAP program, CJ finally became a full-fledged member of the Asset Management Department (AMD). Having been designated as the roadway engineer for CALAX, CJ is mainly responsible for the maintenance of CALAX’s roadway assets, particularly road pavement and drainage. He also supervises the Maintenance and Incident Response Team (MIRT) in performing their maintenance activities and ensures the overall safety of the carriageway. On almost every day of his shift at work, CJ runs his usual route of checking the road condition of CALAX. Although asset inspection may seem repetitive and easy, it is a critical task since roadway hazards may come in at any time of the day. One lapse in reporting a potential road hazard may cause loss of lives and/or property. Consequently, CJ treats this task with utmost importance and makes sure to perform it religiously.

In fulfilling his obligations, CJ believes that having integrity is a key factor to perform his duties well. Aligned with his Christian belief and values is his principle that one must always have pure and honest intentions in whatever he or she does – including work commitments. “Having integrity means having the initiative to do the right thing even when no one is looking,” he said. “Here in AMD, we were given the freedom to drive our operations vehicle on our own para mag-inspect ng assets. Having that said, there are many opportunities for us to just slack off. But then again, we must always remember that there is a great responsibility that is lodged upon our shoulders – and that is to provide quality service to our customers; for them to get their money’s worth, and for the greater goal of sending them safely to their respective destinations. Kung may defect sa kalsada at napabayaan, hindi lang mata-tarnish ang good image ng company, but we are also compromising the safety of our motorists.” 

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About the writer:

Guillermo A. Danipog III. Cocoy is a Roadway Engineer from Asset Management Department. Being a part of his elementary school’s journalism team was one of his earliest writing stints but decided to step back come high school as he felt inferior and was not confident of his skills yet. Now, he rediscovered his shelved passion by writing for Southlink’s Juan of South and enjoys featuring his colleagues and treats every article as an opportunity to discover new things about them. His features were some of Southlink’s most-visited entries in 2019 and this year, he wants to be more creative and experimental with his works.

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