Prof. Chuchi Sumalpong-Montenegro
The Siatong Queen That Is Chuchi!
Teaching is her major interest, but if given the chance, she would love to fly and try on some extreme sports. Growing up, she was addicted to Siatong, a native Filipino game using sticks and a hole in the ground — the winner is the one who hits the shorter stick to the farthest distance after it's thrown in the air from the hole where it rests horizontally, using the longer stick. She proudly says, “I mastered the 'baliktiw' part, and my team seldom lost.” She loved the game so much she played it until she was in fourth year high school.
Prof. Chuchi Sumalpong-Montenegro is the Chairperson of the Computer Science Department of the College of Computer Studies. She has been working in the University for 13 years starting off as an Instructor back in 1995.
With a fulfilling career in teaching, Professor Montenegro says she is in a very good place. If she were to describe her life in a song, it would be Frank Sinatra’s My Way. “I have made some choices that other people would have considered unwise. Looking back now, I have few regrets to mention. But every choice I ever made brought me to exactly where I am, and I’m in a very good place.”
Let’s get to know Prof. Montenegro more outside the four corners of the classroom.
Describe yourself in three words.
Independent. Driven. Thoughtful.
What is your mantra in life?
I always believe that everything will be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it’s not yet the end.
What makes you laugh/cry?
Jokes from my two kids make me laugh. I laugh at their funny jokes, and I laugh because some of their jokes are not funny. Either way, they just make me happy.
What’s your favorite time/day of the week and why?
With the schedule I am currently engaged in, Saturday is a weekday and twice a month I get to feel Sunday. For every Sunday morning that I am free, it just feels wonderful.
What is your favorite thing to do when not working?
Stay at home, watch TV, read magazines, pamper my dogs, visit my garden.
What is your favorite hangout place in the University?
I don’t usually go around the campus or hangout in any place except for my office, so I guess for the last few years this has been my favorite place.
What makes you blush?
A question like this makes me blush!
Who is your favorite actor?
I admire Johnny Depp. His performances in movies are completely different from one another. Sometimes playing shocking roles that I never thought he would do, and yet he pulls them off! He's just outstanding!
Tell us a fact about yourself?
I may be hard on the outside but soft on the inside.
What’s your favorite game growing up?
Siatong. I was very good at it, mastered the “baliktiw” part, and my team seldom lost. I played it until I was in fourth year high school.
What is your idea of a relaxing day?
A day at the spa — I call it my stress-relieving day. And it really makes me feel good.
What is one thing people would be interested to know about you?
I don’t know.
What song best describes the YOU and the life you have now?
My Way by Frank Sinatra. I have made some choices that other people would have considered unwise. Looking back now, I have few regrets to mention. But every choice I ever made brought me to exactly where I am, and I’m in a very good place.
What is the first thing you do right after waking up in the morning?
I used to have the privilege of turning the TV on early in the morning and watch and listen to CNN while I readied myself for the day. But now, with two kids still in grade school, and school is 5.5 km away from home, it’s always “wake up na kay ma late ta”, “ligo na”, “eat your breakfast”, and “faster”. Sometimes the kids complain, but I know most mothers out there can relate to this.
What’s your idea of a family?
One that gets along well, looks out for each other, is surrounded by good people, has reliable jobs, and where everybody is healthy.