Alumni Spotlight: Roma Pilar

Having listened to the beckoning of her first love - art, 24 year-old Roma Pilar now pursues a Diplomate in Visual Communications at Raffles Design Institute Inc., Manila on top of her Liberal Arts and Integrated Marketing Communications Degree. Recently, she went on an 8-week (October to November 2014) internship program in Hong Kong. Prior to studying again, she worked as a junior writer for a magazine and as an art director and copywriter for an advertising agency in the Philippines.

Female Headshot

What made this experience unique and special?

Roma: Five things. 1) This is the first time I have flown alone and have lived alone in another country. 2) The idea of being free in a foreign land. I was smacked right in the middle of a new territory, wading through a new culture
while chasing an opportunity to be part of it someday. 3) Happy that the "someday" became a "soon" by getting hired. 4) Meeting amazing new people. I loved the diversity of the group I became part of both from The Intern Group and the company I worked with. 5) Fitting in - loving and being loved right back.

Did you forget to pack something important? Did you feel as if you were missing something?

Roma: I didn't forget but I would have loved to pack my whole library. I believe that no room is complete without books and books are my constant source of inspiration and adventure. Of course there is always the option of shopping for books but I do tend to go overboard so having my collection near me helps me yank the need in.

Fiction is a wonderful escape from the now and as for inspiration, I do like flipping through design books and magazines for inspiration rather than just relying on the internet since I get easily distracted. Another thing that I would have wanted near me are my art materials. It would have been great to just have all the basic office supplies within reach while I work on mock-ups.

Cable ride, Lantau to Hong Kong Island

Describe your most meaningful souvenir and why you love it?

Roma: I bought this small white notebook and had my friends sign all over the cover then I filled it with mementos. I'm still trying to fill all the pages but basically it's a collection of photos, drawing and small things I kept during the duration of my stay in Hong Kong.

Recently, I started including materials gathered from keeping in touch with them. Because of its personal nature and the memories attached to it, I consider this mini scrapbook as the best of all my souvenirs - every flip is a chance to reminisce something wonderful. It's binding and it made the experience more real, more worth it and more amazing. I love every page of it.

What is one piece of advice you'd give future students traveling with your program?

Roma: Be confident, put yourself out there and do what you love. Death will bring us all down so go pursue glory while you are young and able. However, pursue glory properly. The goal is move forward and to move up but do it without and with no intent of hurting anybody.

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Acknowledge the fact that human dignity exists and should always be taken into account. The world has only one race and that is the human race; know that we are all, essentially, the same, so be more - be an amazing soul. Conquer the world but conquer it with respect, perseverance, confidence, kindness and love.