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Going out of our comfort zones can take one step at a time.
Many people have claimed that the only way to figure out what’s truly meant for us—be it for career or love life—is to step out of our comfort zone and just go for it. Not gonna lie, hearing this piece of advice ...

I was, but I am not. Desperately, I am trying to reach you – my hope. I am in this particular space in my own constructed world where doubts and frustrations recur. Emphasizing how scared I am being here, I never explored this area before. I was always in those places filled with benevolence, hope shining like the light the sun and the moon possess. And I didn’t have any plans to visit a ‘dark’ place, as how I described it then. But, as funny as how my world suddenly flipped, I am now here, completely lost with monsters persuading me to go insane.

How did I end up here? I can’t logically tell you the answer for that, but I guess, I know when. It started when I had to consider what college course do I want to pursue. Well, if you want to ask what ambition had occurred in my mind when I was young – which is usually the case in terms of life when you were like 7-year-old young - it was definitely being a doctor. I’d thought about wearing a medical coat with a stethoscope around my neck, ready to cure people from their illnesses. It was actually stuck in my mind for so long I almost thought that I was sure of it, yet, as a particular song yields, almost was never really enough and still, it is and will never be.

When I realized that such a perspective was slowly draining me, I tried my best to stand tough. I convinced myself that this was just temporary, that I could think of a way out of this. “There’s still plenty of time,” I once convinced myself. However, my environment demonstrated the contrary: I felt like I was completely out of time.

I was there when my classmates were happily talking about that ‘dream course’ they wish to take in their ‘dream university.’ I was there when my family was suggesting the thought of using my ‘suitable’ speaking voice for broadcasting and voice acting purposes. I was there when my teacher was convincing me that Education suited me the best. That ‘Stand tough!’ aura I used to own back then, suddenly transformed into ‘I give up!’ state, slowly destroying my being. And now, I am here in this space where doubts and frustrations are filling my former enthusiastic self. I need help.

I know, at this point, some of you may never consider me ‘fatal’ because, as you’re reading this, you may judge that I still have the ability to transform my thoughts into words that can be read, so that ‘automatically’ falls into the aspect of complete sanity. No, because I will never tell everything to you in the first place if I still have the urge to stand like I used to, relative to my belief that speaking up through writing is the best way to attract help.

When you look at the photo of mine above, you may say that I was okay. That I was successful. That I was never losing myself. Yes, I was. But, think about what happened days after that was taken and the message of this passage you started reading minutes before, do you think I am still the same girl smiling in the photo? I hope I will be or better yet, improve if the world will permit me. But, now I’m sure – I’m not the same.

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Choosing between dreams and practicality is never easy. My CETs season just ended with the release of the UPCAT results. Anxious as I logged on the website, I started to think about what would happen if I didn't pass UP. Ever since I was six years old, I fixated on the idea that I will become an iska, serving the country and studying at my dream school, which is UP. I strived and studied hard for the UPCAT, sacrificing a lot of things like hang-outs and gala weekends for reviews.

Throughout my CETs journey, I started seeing myself studying only in UP, and while there were no results yet, my friends and I already started planning our lives around the fact that we're gonna study in UP. It was a big deal for me, my friends and my family that I get the chance to study in UP since it's so far from my hometown which is Benguet, and better yet, it's a very well known university.

January 2020 came and universities started releasing CETs results. I was expecting my DCAT and ACET results that month. I passed DCAT but brushed it off because even though I liked the school, I never really saw myself studying there. Same thoughts with Ateneo, since it never really crossed my mind that I might study in ADMU. In fact, Ateneo was never really a choice for me, I only took it just to have another choice in case I failed the UPCAT. I also applied for financial aid not because I was really planning on studying there, but more of "para lang sure na may college ako". I know it's a bad thing but they were just my back-up schools because my main goal was really UP.

One Friday afternoon, ACET results came out. I passed, managed to get a scholarship, and in that moment, my plans just started to crumble.

Seeing that I got a 100% tuition and fees discount, free dorm fees, and an additional book allowance got me into considering studying to Ateneo. Suddenly, I got torn between UP, my dream school, and Ateneo, which offers so much more.

As the months passed, and after talking to my parents, my plans and decisions got more jumbled and messy. I still wanted to go to UP even if there were no results yet but Ateneo offering so much would mean a lesser burden to my parents in terms of finances.

Even though my parents told me that they'll support me no matter where I choose to go, the practicality that Ateneo offers in terms of finances was not an easy thing to waive. Sometimes I would laugh at the fact that I'd spend less on a private school than on a state university. Talking to my friends helped somehow, but they also have various opinions about the two universities. I managed to tell myself to hold off the problem until UPCAT results get released, and so I did.

UP released the UPCAT results and seeing that I passed made me scream and cry, literally. At that moment, all I was thinking was that I passed my dream school and I'm officially a QC college student.

My parents were so proud of me even though they got scared because I screamed, but ultimately, they were happy for me. The next day, I sat down, stared at my UPCAT and ACET results, and told myself that I needed to decide. This was the hardest part. I tried deciding using the pros and cons method but it didn't really work. Talking to my parents also didn't help because they'd support me either way, so their judgement was not a factor at all. I also had the same course in both schools so that wasn't a big help. I was 99% close to letting go of my dream university and decide to go to Ateneo.

I weighed options and Ateneo was the cheaper and more practical option. I also started to see myself studying as a blue eagle, roaming around the campus etc. And financially, I didn't need to worry much except for food. At that point, I started to really like the idea of going to Ateneo more than studying in UP. But then, as the weeks went by, the Ateneo Plan started to lose my interest.

I realized that studying in Ateneo would be a great opportunity, but not something that will really make me happy. The finances and all would be so much better but I wouldn't be happy and content, and I felt that Ateneo couldn't give me everything that I wanted and needed. Then a light bulb lit up.

As I was imagining myself at UP, I ultimately felt that happiness and content that I didn't feel with Ateneo. I realized that, if I didn't study in UP, I know later in my life, I would regret it. I would regret not choosing my dream university because I didn't choose what would make me happy.

In short, I chose my dream over practicality. I know that I would be successful in both tracks, but I simply chose my dream because it is where I'm happier and more content. Besides, we can make our dreams practical but not all the time can the practical choice equate to our dreams. So to those having a hard time choosing between dreams and practicality, weigh it out and always remember to put yourself and your happiness first. And of course, choose the choice that you know you'll not regret later on.

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Which ones have you met?
College life isn’t complete without the people you experience it with. Even if you’re not exactly Miss Congeniality material, you’ve probably still made a friend or two along the way.Some would say that college friends are the friends you’ll keep for life. ...
 
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Real Talk: It feels like you can’t afford to ‘dream’ anymore.
It seemed so long ago when you promised yourself you’d do something cool with your life this year, like going on your first trip with the barkada, attending a concert you’ve patiently saved up for, spending a semester abroad, or even something ...
 
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College students, take note!
Now that majority of universities and colleges have transitioned to online classes to adapt to the new normal brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, students will be once again stuck in front of their computer screens for extended periods of time. Since ...
Jodie Brazil Jun 20, 2020

Hello! I'm glad for the opportunity to share how I'm trying to make a study habit this quarantine! It's tricky, but I guess I have to develop these 10 little steps for my studying improvements.

1. Wake up early every day so that I will have extra time for myself. This is the time for my reflection, meditation, or the perfect time for reading a book and writing something on my journal. It will basically give me a start up feeling before I could jump up to my studying routines. I could exercise, do some cleaning and fixing up, or even stare blankly out of the window. Well, it's a time for myself and solitude.

2. Give myself a delightful breakfast, those that could make me full and energized so that I can go through the entire morning of studying. These times that we aren't allowed to go to school, it is still crucial to eat the most important meal of the day. Studying at home instead of in a real school environment can be a little bit tricky, and we couldn't make this as an excuse for not having the usual breakfast at a certain time we do when we're about to go to school.

3. I have to think that studying at home requires effort just like how I put effort in studying at school. I have to study at my usual class schedule, so that I will not get lost when the school starts again.

4. I gotta clean my work/study space beforehand so that I could begin seamlessly. This must be my entire responsibility so that when the school starts again, I will never get out from a clean desk, and whenever I get home from school, there's not much cleaning to do and the only thing I have to do is study. Also, I have to get rid of doing things on my bed, instead think of it as a reward after my study hours. It must be a sanctuary and a place of resting, and it shouldn't be cluttered.

5. Whether in school or inside the house, I should never skip my meals. It is easy to skip meals in school because there were times that the breaks were used as time to finish a deadline, and I swear I will always make a little time to eat during those circumstances at school.

6. I will never procrastinate again. I will finish a deadline always ahead of time, and dedicate my Sundays as a time for rest, family, and recreational activities. I will finish everything up until Saturdays so that I can freely spend my Sundays with myself and the ones I care the most.

7. I should never limit myself on a studying technique, because different courses demand different approaches. Actually, I always have been flexible in studying and reviewing my notes because there are certain strategies that work best on a course that I am reviewing.

8. Always, always learn to value the time and manage it accordingly. Of course, life doesn't revolve around studying, there must be a time for social things, for family, or even a day for just lazing around. For all the hard work I've been through, it's safe to say that I deserve a break. So balancing between study works, social life, family, and recreational is a must.

9. Don't stress too much on things that I can never change. I am doing my best, so I must be confident that when I fail, there's a lesson to accumulate. Studying isn't always about being the best, or standing out. But it is also a chance for leaping a faith, and learning to fail. I mean, put your faith on everything you do, that it has your best, and you work hard for it. And it means, either you succeed or fail, there's always something to get on both ends. It's either a gratification or a life-long lesson. And failure is not the end of everything!

10. Trust Jesus in everything. I know and felt Him every time I was in my lowest, and He never failed to get me up. He's my savior and I will never get tired of trusting on Him about everything. He's the real teacher of all time. Thank you if it will be posted! ??

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“There is no room for misogyny in DLSU,” says Ramon V. Del Rosario College of Business president Nates Driz.
De La Salle University will not renew the contract of one of its part-time faculty members after a controversial post made the rounds on social media.According to DLSU's student newspaper The Lasallian, the faculty member posted a Facebook status on Sunday, June 14, hinting ...
 
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"Ang goal ko lang po talaga ay to graduate"
“Mommy & Daddy, Cum Laude po ako.”This was the note that accompanied the "gift" of Ron Jacob Abaday to his parents Helen and Lando Abaday.On May 25, 2020, he posted a video of this heartwarming moment, which has been viewed over 55,000 ...
 
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Now could someone pass us the rice?
In the realm of Filipino dishes, nothing gets our stomachs rumbling (and arteries clogging) quite like sisig. Although originally conceived as a sour salad, sisig as we know it today is a savory dish made of chopped-up pork face, ears, and/or other ...
 
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Currently, 2,000 students have signed up for the program.
While we continue to face the COVID-19 threat in the country, on-ground classes are still unlikely to happen, leaving universities to resort to online means of providing education to their students.In an effort to aid the operations of online academic activities, the ...
 
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Squidballs and kikiam, too. Folks in Quezon City, you're in luck!
If there’s anything we miss about the outside world, it’s the experience of going out to the streets and enjoying a few sticks of fishballs, squidballs, kikiam, and other classic Filipino street eats. If you’re social distancing at home and are looking ...
 
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Imagine how much money you'd save if you could just think about coffee and then get the desire effects?
Despite being on lockdown for two months, many people might agree when we say that our love for coffee hasn’t changed one bit. We may no longer be able to head out on our usual coffee run, but we make do with ...

‘MUSIC OF THE PEOPLE’: WHY STUDENT VOICE PLAYS A VITAL ROLE IN THE MIDST OF A CRISIS

Words: Darryl Banay Peñaredondo

Allowing students to cope up with the changes brought by the coronavirus disease, several schools and professors opt to cancel requirements and pass their students. As an act of compassion, top performing universities including Ateneo de Manila University, University of the Philippines, Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila gave out passing mark to all their students with proper directives and guidelines that brought questions to other universities that can’t do the same.

Students and teachers, admit it or not, are the soul of any institutions (schools, universities or colleges). The development and growth of the students reflected to the quality of education they offer. Hence, quality education only grows if universities can give proper care to their learners specifically a help to ask students’ concerns about their struggles during this time of crisis. It is worth listening and involving the students, also non-regular employees we wish to help because their views and discernment is the tool to accurately respond to what the institution need in this time of quarantine.

Over the past few days, students’ sentiments and perceptions became an important determinant to show how a Higher Education Industry (HEI) imbibes the values of progressive leadership — whether they acknowledge the need to open their ears and hearts to self-awareness or not. Emotionally coping with this strange invisible enemy named COVID-19 was a challenge for all. Online classes is done in normal situations, we’re in the middle of a crisis. It is impossible for ‘all’ students to fulfill their requirements, communication and learning-wise. It is so unfair to not take considerations, especially in state universities, where over half of the population is living in a life of “one scratch, one peck.”

According to the Philippine Constitution, higher education institutions are mandated, whether public or private, to operate within an environment of laws and policies that aim to guarantee and protect the right to education of all citizens by ensuring that institutions of learning promote access, equity.... Going back, I believe that giving bunch of works and requirements in this outbreak doesn’t promote enough access and equity.

Another option is providing learning materials for students who don’t have enough resources such as gadgets, internet etc… But what if they lend it as future investment for facilities, laboratories and equipment that they lack of? Another reason to think. Still, we cannot deny the fact that we are not yet ready for this situation, and so, flexible learning.

According to Commission on Higher Education Commissioner Prospero de Vera, months of May to July should be used to ‘prepare’ for the flexible learning system, which will be implemented for the coming academic year. Needless to say, rolling out flexible learning at this moment is unnecessary ?again, we are not yet prepared. But in an unfortunate instance, everyone is not just physically dealing with their health, but also mentally. In this unexpected time in history, we might develop feelings of fear, anxiety and stress in that plays and overwhelms their overall welfare. According to The University of British Columbia, to understand stress and the stress response, one needs to recognize someone else’s stress.

Students’ mental health is one major problem, as they grapple between prioritizing their welfare and their academic requirements. In a published article of Anjali Hazari, a research conducted over the past 30 years has shown that students learn better when they perceive the learning environment ? refers to the social, psychological context in whixh learning occurs ?positively. In that, I believe schools need to adhere this problem Generation Z and Alpha (which we call millennial) facing right now. What doesn’t seem a problem for a person might be a major problem for another. If a student from a university has infected with the virus, I hope none, how is he gonna fulfill his academic requirements? Is he gonna fail his subjects? With all the privacy and discrimination to the victims of the deadly virus, I’m crossing my fingers that you won’t leave them behind.

Student-driven solutions to educational inequity is all we want. Involving students’ sentiments into the process of decision making is vital in the light of COVID-19, because they can give clues on how effective a university is, especially their feedbacks about the institution’s present condition. Their comments can reveal the institutions’ weakest points, and if enough of them share the same discernment, maybe it’s time to re-calibrate and reassess. Students’ criticism should be taken constructively. It’s not yet late to change the imposed guidelines and policies for new normal. I believe that change isn’t just a diversion, but a proper way of learning. Dropping some ego will not make an HEI less competent during this crisis. If HEI still pursue to give boatload of academic works, in a life where the main reason to study is to afford a ticket to our dreams, we have nothing to do but follow and be a slave of our dreams in this uncertain time.

To understand the students on a deeper level, higher education institution must learn how to listen without judgement. We are locked in a cell that has no bars and we became prisoners of the threat that is beyond our control. This is not a crusade of the slaves, but it’s the perfect time to listen to the collective voices of the people ? we are your learners, not your slaves.

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Perfect if you're too lazy to type!
We all have that one classmate who’s too tamad to jot down notes. Instead, they take pics of what’s on the board or borrow their seatmate’s notes. Well, if that happens to be you, then you’ll definitely like Google Lens’ new feature ...
 
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Four students from different schools share their thoughts and experiences on the issue.
Ever since COVID-19 forced colleges and universities to fully commit to online modes of learning, students have faced the repercussions of shifting to a new mode of education in the middle of a major multi-sectoral threat. While they worry about their futures, they ...
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Kathreece Quizon 13 hours ago

Today, I am sharing my mother's story. I wish my mother was a constant in my life, like an angel who guards you to sleep and comes right there when you called. But angels come back home too, in heaven where they always belonged, and my mother went back a little early. My mother died when I was 13 years old. My last memory of my mother: Letting go when you are not yet ready is a very cruel thing that one has to ever experience. It is a sudden wave of total sadness and desperation crashing into your very core.

On the 28th of July 2013, we went to a resort in Bataan for the employees’ getaway. My parents own a 7-11 franchise, and it had always been a tradition to give their store clerks a get-together every year. I remember very well the last breakfast I had with my mother. The Sunday morning sky was clear and sunny, and the sea was calm and tranquil as we ate our breakfast on a cottage under the tall palm trees. She shared with us a strange dream she had the other night. She dreamt about an unknown woman holding an ice pick chasing her down on a dimly lit street, then she woke up just before the woman could grab her arm. We never knew what that dream exactly meant and now, I wished I never knew its meaning. After breakfast, my family and our employees decided to take a swim at the beach. The day was nice. The morning air may be chilly but the sun’s kiss on our skins gave us warmth. It was perfect. Everything is fine and the tides are low which made it very enjoyable to swim. We swam a little farther from the shore and we stopped to the point where the water reached our shoulders. We were talking about the good things in life and reminiscing the good old days. Those are the things that I’ve always loved about my family because I never had a meaningless conversation with them.

A few moments later, we heard a panicking call for help from one of our store clerks. It was Rachel. She was struggling to keep her head above water. She was already drowning but the odd thing was, she was only a few feet away from us. At first, we thought she was just playing around until we felt the sand in our toes dissolving like powder. It felt like as if the seafloor submerged deeper. I remembered sighting the shore and it seemed so close yet very far away. We were all panicking at that time. No one knew how to swim except my mother so without having second thoughts she swam towards Rachel and called out to my father, “Yung mga anak mo! Dalhin mo sa pampang yung mga anak mo!” and I never thought I already heard my mother’s last words to my father. I was paddling like a dog, gasping for air, as I say a little prayer to God to take us all back to safety. I felt my father grabbing our swimsuits, trying to lift our bodies so we can breathe even though he was also struggling to keep himself alive. Once I felt my toes touch the ground, there came a veil of relief that covered my whole body. As soon as my father and my sister made it to the shore we started calling out for help. There were no lifeguards on duty at that time, no personnel, nor guards. I saw my mother already floating in her stomach. We sighted a boat sailing nearby, we waved our hands and called for their attention. They almost ignored us because they cannot comprehend what we were trying to relay but the good thing was a passenger in the boat noticed my mother and Rachel in the water.

My mother’s body was laid on the shore. She was unconscious and her whole body was pale as white. My father performed CPR but my mother couldn’t get the water come out of her mouth because the food she ate earlier got stuck in her throat and blocked the passage. A concerned tourist offered his car to deliver my mom in a nearby health center or a clinic of some sort since the hospital was miles away from the beach and she needs immediate care. My father told us to stay in the hotel room and prepare mom’s belongings so that if she wakes up she has fresh clothes to change into. My sister and I finished packing our things and waited for our father to pick us up from the hotel. I was crying and I couldn’t stop myself because I was afraid to lose my mother. I couldn’t imagine what my life would be if I lose her that day. Moments lasted until we heard a knock on the door and it was my father, crying, and apologizing to us. He hugged me and my sister tightly and saying, “Sorry, anak, sorry hindi na uuwi si mommy, sorry hindi ko nasagip si mommy”. And that was the moment I felt sinking into the ground. I never knew what to feel at first. I was numb because my worries were now actually a reality that I have to live in. I was at shock because I am now one of the kids in those cliche teleseryes who lost a mother at an early age. We went to the health center to settle everything. The clinic was very small and it sure did lack equipment. He told us to stay in the car. I wanted to see my mom, but I know he never wanted us to see her like that. I didn’t know what to feel. I was having high anxiety levels that my stomach is churning and I wanted to vomit. I got off the car and entered the health center to find the restroom. When I was finding my way around, I passed by the emergency room. I saw my mother lying in a foldable bed, lifeless, her hands dangling from the side of the bed, she has violet bruises on her skin, and her body was partially covered with a white towel.

That is when it sunk into me that she’s dead and never coming back. My father asked the others to just commute back to Manila because what we need right now is comfort from our family. The drive back home was one of the most painful memory I had as a kid. My father was in the steering wheel crying his eyes out. We drove from Bataan to Pampanga. We went home to my grandmother’s house, the nearest house that we can call “home” because how are we still going to be “home” without her?

Once we reached Pampanga, we stopped over to the gas station and my father made some calls to our loved ones to tell them that my mother passed away. He then called my aunt to help him arrange for the funeral. We got home and my grandmother hugged us and told us to get some rest. Already tired of crying, I went to sleep for a while. I woke up and for a second, I thought everything that happened the other day was all just a dream. That she was there in Manila, sitting on the couch reading some furniture magazine, waiting for us to go home. But that’s how cruel life is, right? I got up and weirdly, I felt sands in the bed. It was gray, just like the ones on the beach. I thought maybe it was just dirt but it was a fair amount to believe that maybe she visited us before she left. - ?

- The part of how I conquered the grief of her passing is shared in my personal blog. I felt the need to share my story with everyone since she's the woman I look up to. Feel free to visit my personal blog too when you have the time. I love writing my stories. Thank You! link: http://qkathreece.wixsite.com/kathreecequizon/post/breaking-waves

Ry Fabella 13 hours ago

Hello! Sharing my first story in Wattpad!

TITLE: Whisper to the Stars AUTHOR: https://www.wattpad.com/user/withniji

GENRE: Teen Fiction/Romance STORY LINK: https://my.w.tt/Y3HeLPe9K7

Description: Ingrid Gianna "Gigi", a breadwinner of her family, has kept her feelings hidden for Hayme, her long time high school crush, because she has too much responsibilities in life; believing that she has no time for love. But, no matter how hard she tries to suppressed it for years, fate always finds its way....like it was already written in the stars.

COLLEGE SURVIVAL TIPS: IS BEING ALONE MEANS WEAKNESS OR STRENGTH, OR ELSE, MAYBE IT'S JUST YOUR OWN WAY TO SURVIVE.

College is a Matter of Survival. It is more on trusting and relying on YOURSELF, alone. College is not a race, it's like a journey, a journey of hardships, circumstances, and challenges that, to some extent, will push you to give up, so you must set your goals and take risks. College is far from being a junior or senior high school, so there's no more room for easy-going attitudes.

It is better to suffer now than to regret your actions in the future. I've learned these things and continue doing it right now. College made me realize that you'll meet temporary people in your life, some of them stay, but others not, they vanish, and soon you become strangers to them. It's okay to make friends, but you must know how to set your limitations with them. Also, don't forget to think wisely, there are some whose only seasonal friends. At the end of the day, the only thing that matters is that you accompanied each other, and still, you have yourself. Being alone doesn't mean you avoid people coming into your life, it's just that, you know how to distance yourself from people you don't feel to get along with, and that's OKAY. The thing about college is, you'll meet different types of people who will help you to open up your mind to be more matured enough to the point that you will become more understanding rather than start an argument. There's nothing to be afraid of being alone, you just need to accept the facts and consequences.

Little by little, you will witness yourself develop from how much you've grown, and be grateful for that because you overcome those situations that trigger you to give up. I share these things with you that may be applicable to your upcoming college life and leaving this message to you. 'Don't hesitate to take risks to success, it will be paid off someday. Let God help you and do your very best.' #CollegeSurvival

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