Cool and Reliable Tita Ems

Guided by the principles of excellence, collegiality, and teamwork, Mrs. Emma B. Gonzales spent the last 38 years of her working days in the Institute of Mathematical Sciences and Physics(IMSP) as a devoted civil servant. Tita Emma, as she was fondly referred to by most staff members of the Institute, graduated from Laguna College in 1976 with the degree of Bachelor of Science in Commerce major in accounting (cum laude). She is a resident of San Ildefonso, Alaminos, Laguna since birth where she lived with her husband Crispin together with their three children Joel, Sherrylyn, and Crispin, Jr. who are respectively 42, 40, and 25 years old to date. She faced and has been triumphant with the challenge of raising her kids and sending them to school while working in the Institute. She proudly claims her kids are all college graduates, the two elder ones have families of their own now while the youngest is still single.

Tita Ems started as a clerk/typist at the then Department of Statistics and Statistical Laboratory (DSSL). She was the one tasked to type the proposal to create IMSP from DSSL and the then Department of Mathematics and Physics. In the course of her stay in the new Institute she was assigned as Division Secretary of the Mathematics Division, then as administrative assistant and later as acting administrative officer. When Dr. Virgilio Sison took over as Director of the Institute, she has to do multitasking as rector’s Secretary, administrative assistant and acting administrative officer. Clearly these positions carry different responsibilities but Tita Ems tackled them all at the same time.

Always the gracious and cool person, Tita Ems would not be caught without lipstick and make-up despite the heavy load assigned to her. She would acknowledge every request given to her with a smile. She would even offer well-meaning suggestions, comments, and corrections to whatever she was assigned to do but she did this with utmost humility and diplomacy. She approached challenges with calm and serenity even when the tasks were already toxic. One thing is certain with Tita Ems, she will finish assigned tasks with minimum supervision and to the satisfaction of her superiors. She was averse to office controversies and worked with everyone in the most collegial manner.

She humbly acknowledges the thoughtfulness, love and care given her by the people in the Institute as she get through the day-to-day challenges of raising her kids and working tirelessly. In a message she sent to Dr. Editha Jose, current Director of IMSP, she quipped, “ I thank them all especially my colleagues, friends and some faculty members who helped me got through these hard times”. Finally, she remarked, “I can’t forget all of you”.

(RG Panopio, Retired Professor and former Director of IMSP)