These were the good questions to begin my story and relate my personal experiences working abroad. OFWs are premium export product in the Philippines; we are very in demand workers not only in Middle East countries but in Western countries as well. We are known for being dedicated, hard-working and ability to understand English language. Ever since I graduated a bachelor degree in college I never heard somebody from my friend that they wanted to have business on their own, most of us planned to be employed after graduation. Did we finish college to be a laborer? My answer is YES! Look at me now; I don’t have any other choices but to be employed and why? I don’t know, my teachers didn’t give me any idea to be a business-minded person although I had a business management subject during my college days. Even in my high school days we were never trained to be an entrepreneur albeit those elective subjects that I had it before didn’t even sink to my mind that I can use it in future business purposes maybe I’m too young to understand what’s elective means for my future. I remembered my classmates selling cookies and brownies in my 3rd and 4th year in high school, they don’t even understand either what’s the purposes of that training. They just wanted to dispatch and sell it all to bring back their money/capital. In fairness, during my Elementary days I appreciated my teacher Mr. Agustin, he trained us in carpentry and electrical. I even remembered that I used to sell some of my works in a cheap price in my neighbor Aling Dada; she asked me if she can buy my basket holder made from abaca. Imagine I already sold my product without knowing I have skill/talent. My parents don’t even convince me to produce more of that basket holder and sell it in Divisoria or in our neighborhood and now I forgot how I make it, crap! Thanks to our government they opened opportunity to work abroad from janitorial, domestic helper, teachers, nurses, admin, engineers, and doctors; they breed too many laborers to the world. And yes we were trained not to think on our own but conditioned to follow as a “world-class” laborer. Nowadays, I’m earning money I don’t know what to do next. My wife and I planned to have our own house and saving some money for my kids’ education but to become what exactly; a new breed export worker?
Our government should provide education on how to become reformist entrepreneur or business-minded. They should focus teaching our youth to be more dynamic on how to earn money from scrap things on our backyard and teach them to become a manager of their own business, to be a self-employed. Now I realized why rich people become richer and poor people become poorer because they outwitted us. Our knowledge is their gain but our losses.
To close my story, allow me to share Bill Gates quotes “I failed in some subject in exam, but my friend passed in all, Now he is an engineer in Microsoft and I’m the owner of Microsoft.”