Mrs. Cyrene Flores-Aseñas
This gentle soul brings color to the Nutrition and Dietetics Department with her infectious smile and resilient spirit amidst pressure. For 13 years now, Mrs. Cyrene Flores-Aseñas, the Department secretary, has remained a loyal and trusted character in this small yet thriving “community within a community”.
Born and raised in Dumaguete, Cyrene relishes in a fun childhood bursting with traditional Filipino outdoor games. She remembers with a smile play with other kids in their neighborhood morning until nightfall, especially under the beams of a bright full moon.
Her fascination with anything fast and requiring movement comes as no surprise. She was born to athletic parents. Her mother was a softball coach and her father, a varsity baseball player. It wasn’t long until Cyrene inherited this love for sports, and by elementary school she started to “play ball. Every summer, she would look forward to their Church sports fest which featured softball in its roster of games. And Cyrene played without fail throughout her elementary and high school years.
Came college, circumstances pulled Cyrene to the serious stuff. She wanted to become a professional nurse. So she took the National College Entrance Examination (now called National Secondary Achievement Test) in 1991. Unfortunately, her dream was short-lived; she failed to meet the mark needed to get her into the College of Nursing in Silliman University.
Discouraged, she enrolled in a secretarial course for one school year in another university. Fate revived her interest in Silliman though when in 1993, she was influenced by friends to transfer to the University and enroll in the Nutrition and Dietetics program. That was the start of Cyrene's love affair with community work and the renewal of vows with her passion for sports.
Cyrene obtained her degree in 1997.
After graduation, she was offered a job by a cousin who was running a pharmacy. She grabbed the offer and stayed on for two years. It was an invitation again from a friend for her to work in a travel agency in Manila that then free-spirited Cyrene left home. But ten months of homesickness got the best of her — thanks, too, to her mother for her weekly prodding that she return home already.
Back to the original grind, she worked again in her cousin's pharmacy upon her return. It was during this time when her life took on more colors, meeting a young barber, Eduardo, who worked in a salon beside the pharmacy, who became her first boyfriend.
In 2001, good news broke to Cyrene that the canteen at the ND Department was in need of a person to supervise it. She was probably the perfect match for the job that the janitor of the Department was sent to inform her about the opening. Without any qualms, she accepted it. Three years later, she was promoted to Secretary, holding a concurrent responsibility as Laboratory Assistant.
Though her career was making good steps forward, her relationship with Eduardo didn’t. Caught between Eduardo’s proposal for marriage and her responsibilities as a daughter, Cyrene chose the latter and lost Eduardo after a six-year relationship.
Five years after the break-up, Cyrene remained single and was faithful in caring for her sick mother and elderly father. In August 2012, by some twist of fate, Eduardo and Cyrene’s roads crossed paths again. And this time, Eduardo wasn’t planning of letting her go again — neither was Cyrene.
With some guidance from then Department Chairperson (now Food Services Manager) Prof. Ana Vee Riconalla and current Chairperson Prof. Michele Aclaro-Naranjo, Eduardo and Cyrene found themselves in marriage on December 16 of that same year. The whole Department came together to pool the needed funds for the wedding — from planning to food preparation to the decoration of the venue. Eduardo and Cyrene tied the knot at the Nutrition and Dietetics garden, with Judge Crescencio Tan, Jr. presiding it.
They are now blessed with a four-month old baby boy, Cyed Nathan.
Describe yourself in three words.
What is your motto in life?
“Strike while the iron is hot.”
What makes you laugh?
I laugh at the smallest of things, whether it’s a joke or simply a witty comment.
What makes you cry?
As easy as it is to make me laugh, I also easily cry. I am sensitive and very emotional.
What’s your favorite time of the day and why?
Evenings – because it’s a time for rest. I also look forward to it especially now that I have a baby.
What’s your favorite day of the week and why?
Saturday – because it’s Sabbath day, a day for rest.
What do you love doing when not working?
I enjoy doing household chores and gardening.
What is your favorite hangout place in the University?
The Nutrition and Dietetics Department.
What makes you blush?
If you were an actress, who would you be?
Tell us a fact about yourself.
I am a Seventh Day Adventist
What’s your favorite game growing up?
Softball and volleybal.
What is your idea of a relaxing day?
Watching TV and tending the garden.
What one thing would people be interested to know about you?
People from my church often refer to me as “Martha” – the one who is “worried and upset about many things.”
What is the first thing you do right after waking up in the morning?
I cook breakfast.
What’s your idea of a family?
My idea of a family is one that is devoted and God-fearing.