Stock Smarts Bacolod: From The Project Head’s Point Of View

July 31, 2015 | Kristel Kaye Dequillo

When I was in college, I was not very active in school – at least not as active as I was in high school. In high school, I was all over the place. I decided to focus on academics when I started college, and that means zero participation in anything that is not graded. But then, I find myself doing something I never thought I’d do, at least not barely a year after college – spearheading a comprehensive seminar about investing in the stock market. And I was scared.

I was scared because even though I was working with a very dynamic team, I know accounting…I studied it for four years. I saw the cost projection and I wasn’t entirely sure how the Bacolod crowd would respond. Is the registration fee too expensive? Is the venue big enough to accommodate everyone? Will we have enough participants to breakeven? You know, those thoughts. And even in the midst of my doubts, I knew that I have to be firm, that I have to work harder than I ever did, and that my determination to finish what I started is enough to offset my lack of experience. I can do this.

The reason why I am very determined and passionate about Stock Smarts Bacolod is because this is the first project that I am spearheading with Junior Chamber International Bacolod Inc (JCI Bacolod Inc.). It is also a fundraising project so proceeds that will be raised in the event will be used to fund the community projects of the organisation – that way, the members would not need to shell out funds from their own pockets. Its all for a noble cause. And I wanted that; I wanted to do something that is bigger than me.

JCI BACOLOD INC. is a non-profit leadership organization of entrepreneurs, political and civic oriented young leaders of Bacolod City. It is affiliated with the Junior Chamber International, the world’s largest leadership and training organization for young men and women between the ages of 18 and 40, with chapters in 100 countries.

I wanted Stock Smarts Bacolod to happen because I knew that a lot of people wanted to learn how they can start investing in the stock market. Even a lot of my friends were asking how I first got into it. But of course, investing involves hard-earned money, and people need to learn how to do it, so that they do not lose their investment in the process. I wanted people to learn from the best, just like I did almost four years ago.

I started planning for this seminar when I was actually a few days away from taking the Real Estate Brokers Exam. I remember I was pretty stoked. After the exam that’s when the real deal began. By the way, I plan to post another article where I will be giving tips about organising a seminar – I claim to be no expert, but I will be writing based on my experiences.

The month of June flew by so, so fast and before I knew it, it was July 3, 2015 and I was driving to Bacolod-Silay Airport with my friend and fellow JCI member, Aljon, to pick up the speaker. So whilst I was driving some of the committees were already in the venue, at Negros First Cyber Centre, setting up and checking little details so we can have the seminar go as smoothly as possible. The first session of the comprehensive seminar was only a few hours away and by the time I got Mr. Germo settled at May’s Organic Garden, the anticipation was too much I felt like I was going to burst.

Books by Marvin Germo

Books by Mr. Marvin Germo were available on site! Much cheaper than the bookstore price, too!

Despite the heavy rain, the first session where Mr. Germo taught us stock market basics, went smoothly. My doubts and every negative thought was thrown out the window when I saw the number of participants and how eager they were to learn. I was even happier because I knew that they were excited to learn even more the next day, for the second and third sessions.

On July 4, 2015, J.CO Donuts and Coffee sponsored 90 boxes with 2 donuts per box for the snacks of the attendees. There were a couple of excess boxes and so, even though it embarrasses me to think about it, let alone share it with my readers, I ate half a dozen donuts that day. There, I said it. I believe the attendees were also happy with the abundance of snacks. Thank you very much, J.CO!

Thank you, J.CO!

Thank you, J.CO! I took this photo when I picked the donuts up from their store at The District North Point Mall.

The second session where we were going to talk about the topic How to Pick Good Stocks and Avoid Bad Ones, started a little late than what we originally planned because of the heavy rain. If you know me personally, you would know that I would hate to make people wait (unless I absolutely have to) because that it just not the way I roll. But that very moment, I decided to chill because no matter how well you plan out, there are just some factors you cannot control.

Enjoying break time!

The third session was my favourite. You see, I have been wanting to learn more about the basics of technical analysis so I can use it when I trade, and I did. But reading about it is totally different when it is explained to you by an expert. The excitement of the participants to invest was evident after the three sessions. And that’s what matters to me. After all, its one of the very reasons why I pushed for this project.

During the awarding ceremonies | L-R: Jessebel Abay, Arvin Villaruel, Marvin Germo, Yours Truly, Marvin Angeles and Marwin Angeles

I have learned so much from being a project chair – this was my baptism of fire, after all. But let me share with you something very personal (at least I think it is haha). Before I proposed this project to the board of JCI Bacolod Inc., I prayed for this. Hard. I knew that accomplishing something this big was beyond me. I was aware that cannot do it alone. So more than learning about stocks, I have proven this to be true:

“Commit your actions to the Lord, and your plans will succeed.”

There were a LOT of bumps along the way – I have even allowed my doubts to get into me a couple of times. But still, I am thankful for those moments of doubt because those were also the very moments I have truly experienced God’s power. Thank you to my Big Boss up above.


A short detour to Calea before Mr. Marvin Germo and Mrs. Yvonne Germo’s flight back to Manila. We went to Aida’s Manokan Country before this.

I would like to end this entry by thanking all the people who have made the event possible.

Our sponsors,

  • The Province of Negros Occidental through Hon. Alfredo Marañon Jr. for allowing us to use the hall in the Negros First Cyber Centre as our venue, and Roy I. Balicas (a.k.a my future father-in-law) for helping me obtain the Governor’s consent.
  • Congressman of the Third District, Hon. Alfredo B. Benitez for his unwavering support of Stock Smarts Bacolod
  • J.CO Donuts and Coffee for the generosity in providing the snacks of our participants – even their crew at The District North Point branch were extremely friendly.
  • May’s Organic Garden through Mr. Aljon Candelasa for sponsoring the accommodation of the speaker
  • Manulife through Mr. Paolo A. Javellana for the support, thank you.
  • Coca-cola for sponsoring drinks of the participants
  • Amaia through Miss Jaye Medel
  • Sprint Ads for sponsoring our tarpaulins for the event
  • Double J Chicken Station for sponsoring bottled water for the participants

Thank you very much to our sponsors!

Lastly, I would like to thank the people who dedicated their precious time to make this project possible. You all know who you are. I am forever grateful to all of you.

This also might be a good time to announce that we are planning for Stock Smarts Bacolod Reload in January. Are you ready for part two? Comment if you are coming!

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