Through the years, Juris Orbis (JO) has been the bastion of unwavering support for many of its loyal members. The organization showed its resilience and proved that it could provide a place of excellent service and leadership time and time again. As they celebrate their 10th anniversary this year, let us look back on what JO achieved and how a dream of a Legal Management (LM) student turned into a legacy filled with greatness.
On the 12th of August 2010, after a school assembly at OB Montessori where Hezekiah D. Nicdao was encouraging students to enroll in Holy Angel University (HAU), Dr. Jesus D. Panlilio, the University Registrar, approached him and suggested, “Why don’t you start a Legal Management Organization?” It was then that the idea of a new organization came into being.
Being an LM student, Nicdao knew that there would come a time when HAU will create a Law school in the future and that an organization was necessary. However, if he were to create a new organization, it would be infeasible for it to become independent from the Management Society (ManSoc) — the leading organization for management students at that time. To add, he didn’t have the time, resources, nor money to develop an autonomous organization. Nevertheless, he pursued his dream and made it so that his organization members could still join ManSoc or the Junior Philippine Institute of Accountants (JPIA). On the 11th of July, The Office of Student Affairs accredited his organization under the name, “Juris Orbis”.
Nicdao became its first President from 2011-2012 and 2012-2013 (The first Constitution called the JO head, President. The title CEO was introduced in A.Y. 2013-2014). During its first year, he was with Jowee Ann Canlas as Vice President, Chaundra Vanessa Bautista as Adjutor (Secretary), and Mhariel Charisse Lo-ot and Unica Lapuz as Exchequers (Treasurers).
With only 18 members at that time, JO was still a small voice in comparison to ManSoc and JPIA. However, with the help of their fellow student organizations, they were able to find a way to grow.
“With the big help of the CSC, through the leadership of the then Chairman Marc Jemel Angeles, we were made to feel on equal footing with JPIA and ManSoc, and in working with the Dean’s Office. The equal footing [that] The Enterprise and the CSC gave to JO in newsprint and events made it more visible and familiar to more students. Through our Management Advisor Claudia Cayanan and Law Advisor Atty. Angela Abrea, we were able to introduce ourselves better to the faculty,” Nicdao stated.
Hardships & Triumph
By the end of the first semester of Nicdao’s first term, JO faced “big needs”, such as finances, connections with other sectors of the community, and workforce. Furthermore, they had difficulties meeting the schedule of their original adviser, Mr. Leandro Sanchez. So, they looked for a new one. They invited some but failed to get a new adviser, whose approval and signature were mandatory for any event to take place. By the end of the second semester, the lack of substantial activities and an outreach threatened to send JO into probationary status or worse, be shut-down in AY 2012-2013. To rub salt into the wound, rumors circulated that LM as a course would be dissolved because of the lack of numbers. Fortunately, Nicdao was given assurance by Dr. Arlyn Sicangco-Villanueva, the former university president, and Dr. Panlilio that this was not true.
In a turn of events, JO managed to collect the required membership fees from 76 fellows and through sheer determination and will, they were able to keep the organization alive.
“By AY 2012-2013, [by] some miracle, JO was given accredited status. I felt like it was a ‘new day’. We were finally able to hold the first General Assembly inviting the then-president of the Alliance of Legal Management Students of the Philippines, of which we became a member through then VP-External Jan Uriel David,” Nicdao said.
Juris Orbis Today:
10 years after Nicdao’s tenure, JO continues to shed light on every single SBA student willing to join their cause.
Hershey Maine Punongbayan, the current CEO of Juris Orbis, mentioned that she was inspired to join the premiere law organization. “I believe that it would be an opportunity for me to render service to the community and it would help to develop my skills, abilities, and attitudes that I can apply in a lot of aspects in my life,” she stated.
Punongbayan emphasized, “Juris Orbis strives to create an atmosphere where unity is fostered and a chance where we can actively address common issues and provide solutions and tools to help each other succeed. We provide an avenue for the legally-interested students to attain erudition, professional and global competence in the discipline of law through the establishment of a profound environment that promotes the importance of legal knowledge, professional competence, effective leadership, active fellowship, open and democratic academic discourse, scholastic excellence, and social awareness and responsibility.”
As Juris Orbis marks its 10th anniversary this year, the fire lit by Nicdao and his companions continuously burns and gives light which will remain a glowing reminder for the next generation of numerous SBA students.
“As long as there is someone who will set ablaze the organization’s goals and objectives, Juris Orbis will continue to serve its fellows. As what Mr. Nicdao mentioned, keeping the torch aflame and passing it to the next generation of leaders will let this organization remain,” said Punongbayan
“I see JO help HAU be the hub of excellence in Legal Management as the best paralegal and pre-law course.
I see JO help SBA in teaching RFBT subjects that makes great accountants, on top of giving good CPALE passing scores.
I see JO help SBA in raising a new generation of business leaders well-grounded in business law, that make good communities, products, and services, on top of helping the bottom line, and
I see JO help SBA in raising a new generation of members of the workplace well-grounded in their rights as well as responsibilities in the law.” —Hezekiah D. Nicdao, founder of Juris Orbis, 2010
LAYOUT BY: Cristine Joie Q. Bacud
PHOTO SOURCE(S): Juris Orbis Facebook Page