Dr. Enrique G. Oracion

Dr. Enrique G. Oracion

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He grew up in the rural landscapes of Bayawan, exposed at a young age to the reality of hard labor in the farming community. But while it was an experience that some would rather not look back to, he draws great motivation from to pursue his dreams and dream bigger.

Graduate Programs Dean Dr. Enrique G. Oracion, or Ike as his friends call him, is the eldest son in a brood of six. He spent most of his childhood helping his parents in the farm. It was a normal scene for kids to help their parents plow the fields. But while he committed to helping his parents, he knew well he could do more for them and achieve a life outside farming. Notwithstanding the fear of stretching himself too thinly, he put more effort in his schooling and considered himself to have studied harder than the other kids. His efforts paid off when he graduated valedictorian in elementary, and proceeded to consistently raking in honor awards throughout high school.

In the summer of 1977, Ike enrolled in Silliman University for his college education. He took six units worth of advance subjects, while most of his peers were still savoring the barely two months of summer break before entering college.  He also worked as a student assistant. Ike initially wanted to enroll in either the nursing or engineering program. However, to his dismay, his performance in the National College Entrance Examination did not qualify him for both.  Unprepared with a third choice, he decided to take general art subjects while contemplating on his options.

By the time Ike reached his sophomore year, his mind was already made up. It was Sociology for him. His fascination with this degree was developed with the help of a friend who introduced him to the works of  Dr. Timoteo Oracion, a professor in Silliman who, apart from having the same family name, had a remarkable study on the Negritos in the mountains of Mabinay and Bais. Ike grew interested in what the professor was doing that when he enrolled, his thesis took on the same subject.

Like when he was in elementary and high school, Ike also invested much of himself in his studies in college. In the same year he enrolled in the Sociology program, he landed on the list of Class Honors. This would become an annual accomplishment until he achieved College Honors and, eventually, the highest academic distinction of University Honors. Persistent about his studies, he set aside his summer breaks; instead, he continued taking summer subjects over summer.

In October 1980, in span of three school years and a semester, Ike completed his degree Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and graduated cum laude. Immediately after graduation, Ike pursued further studies. He enrolled in the Master of Arts in Sociology program on a graduate student scholarship. It was a wise decision as he knew if he fell into the lull of summer after graduating from the University, he would return home to plow the fields.

While working on completing his masters, Ike’s life was to be forever changed when he met the girl in the boarding house next door, who would eventually become his wife, Teresita Macias.  Teresa was a Civil Engineering student in Silliman. It was not long before the two became good friends.

Young love did not derail Ike’s commitment to his studies. In 1984, he completed his second degree and the following year, began teaching at the Negros Oriental National Agriculture School, which is now Negros Oriental State University Bayawan-Sta. Catalina Campus.

In 1987, with some extra cash on hand from a recently completed research project, Ike decided to tie the knot with Teresita. Their marriage is blessed with two sons: Dino Enrique, who is a post-graduate intern at the Silliman University Medical Center, and Jean Henri, who is in his senior year in Biology in Silliman.

Two years after getting married, Ike received an offer to teach at the Science High School in Dumaguete. He accepted the post, consistent with his desire for him and his family to settle in Dumaguete. He taught there for three years before receiving another offer to teach, this time at the High School Department of Silliman. Ike had always wanted to give back to his Alma Mater, and so, without hesitation, he gladly accepted the job.

He was a Social Studies teacher for four years before making the transition to teaching in the college level. Ike was absorbed into the Sociology Department at the College of Arts and Sciences in 1996. Throughout his many years of teaching, he remained actively involved in research and publications. This earned him a visitor’s scholarship at the University of Washington in 2001. His experience during this exchange program urged him to pursue doctorate studies.

In 2006, Ike completed his Doctor of Philosophy in Anthropology at the University of San Carlos on a scholarship from the United Board for Christian Higher Education in Asia. This was a decision he made, instead of pursuing it abroad, in order for him to see his children grow up.

The following year, he was appointed Director of the Research and Development Center. Currently, Ike serves as Dean of the Graduate Programs.

During his stint as Research Director, he was accepted as UBCHEA Fellow to two universities abroad. These are: The Chinese University of Hong Kong (2011) and Baylor University in Waco, Texas in the United States (2012).

Describe yourself in three words.
Hardworking. Committed. Persistent.

What is your motto in life?
Time is precious. Work and enjoy while you have the time.

What makes you laugh?
Anything funny.

What makes you cry?
Losing people, things and opportunities.

What is your favorite time of the day?
Evening — because that’s the time when I can think, write and reconcile without distractions.

What is your favorite day of the week?
Friday — because it’s the end of the work week.

What do you love doing when you’re not working?
Watching television.

What is your favorite hangout place in the University?
As a student, I enjoyed hanging out at the Amphitheater.

What makes you blush?
When I’m flattered, especially when people say I look younger than my age.

If you were an actor, who would you be?
Tom Cruise

Tell us a fact about yourself.
I am a researcher.

What is your favorite game growing up?
Gira-gira, especially since we made our own toy guns.

What is your idea of a relaxing day?
Sitting under the shade of a tree with the wind bringing in a cool breeze and without the pressure or stress of doing anything.

What one thing would people be interested to know about you?
My kids.

What song best describes YOU and the life you have now?
My love will see you through” by Marco Sison

What is the first thing you do right after waking up in the morning?
Go straight to the bathroom to straight preparing for the day

What is your idea of a family?
A family is God-fearing and able to relate well with others.