Karen Gutierrez Maimot: Journey to Success in the Special Professional Licensure Examination (SPLE) 2023 Interview

Karen Gutierrez Mamot: Journey to Success in the Special Professional Licensure Examination (SPLE) 2023 Interview
April 2023 Special Professional Licensure Examination for Professional Teachers Board Passer: An Interview with Karen Gutierrez Maimot

Here’s an up close and personal interview with Karen Gutierrez Maimot:

How do you feel about receiving the news that you passed the board exam?

In response to the news of passing the board exam, she expressed a mix of emotions, recounting the unexpected early message from friends about her success. Grateful to the Lord, she acknowledged the significance of sleepless nights and felt that her hard work had finally paid off.

Have you received such recognition before? Please give details.

Acknowledging previous recognition for her work and church involvement, she shared instances of receiving high grades from mystery shoppers during her tenure in the hotel industry. The recent recognition at the International Bible Institute graduation further reinforced a divine message about significant plans for her future.

What is your job here in Kuwait? How long have you been OFW?

As an Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW) in Kuwait for nearly 15 years, she currently serves as an Office Manager in a Petroleum Consulting Company.

Who do you attribute your success to?

Attributing her success primarily to God, she emphasized the importance of bringing glory to Him in all endeavors. Family, loved ones, and friends also played a crucial role in inspiring and supporting her journey.

Who has inspired you to take up SPLE?

Inspired by her late grandmother’s encouragement, she decided to pursue the Special Professional Licensure Examination (SPLE) for teachers a year after her grandmother’s passing. The words of her grandmother lingered, motivating Karen to embark on the SPLE journey.

What were the reactions of your family to this board’s passing?

The family’s reaction to Karen’s board exam passing was one of immense joy, particularly from her proud mother.

To what extent was TSOK helpful in your success story?

She expressed deep gratitude to The Society of the Knights of Rizal (TSOK) for their unwavering support and efforts. She considered their assistance during the pandemic and other activities in Kuwait to be a great privilege.

What is your plan for the future or your dream after passing this exam?

Looking toward the future, Karen, guided by prayer, seeks clear guidance from the Lord and hopes for His grace and favor to rest upon her.

Is this your first licensure exam? Do you plan on taking other exams, and what would it be?

While the SPLE was her first licensure exam, she expressed interest in taking other exams, specifically pursuing a Master of Music majoring in Music Education.

What message would you like to give to the upcoming board exam taker?

In offering advice to upcoming board exam takers, she emphasized the importance of faith in God, dedication, and hard work. She encouraged prayer before, during, and after the exam.

How did you know about the SPLE?

She learned about the SPLE through a referral from a friend who is a former TSOK Officer.

When did you decide to apply: after graduation or after finding a job? Why?

She decided to apply after finding a job, believing that there is a time for everything, and the decision to take the exam took 15 years to materialize.

What did you expect from the SPLE regarding the content of the exam? How different is it from college entrance exams?

Preparing for the SPLE, she familiarized herself with the exam format, created a study plan, and covered various content areas.

What questions were easy to answer (e.g., solving, logical reasoning, abstract reasoning)?

She acknowledged challenges in business math, logical reasoning, and abstract reasoning during the exam.

Did you attend a review center? Which review center? (a.) If yes, how did it affect your preparation for the SPLE? (b.) If not, how did you prepare for the exam in terms of resources and review materials?  

Attending review centers such as CBRC and SJTRC, along with utilizing YouTube resources, contributed to her preparation. Approximately 60% of the exam content aligned with the review center, while 40% came from self-review.

How many of the things you reviewed appeared in the exam?

About 60% from the review center and 40% through self-review.

How many weeks or months did you prepare for the exam?

The preparation period spanned from February 2023 to one week before the examination date.

How much did preparing for the exam cost you? Is it worth it?

Despite associated costs with the review centers, she deemed the investment worthwhile,

Do you have a daily study routine? (a.) If yes, what is your daily routine, especially the specific time you study? (b.) If not, how did you manage your time, especially for reviewing?  

Yes, as a mom and a full-time worker, I have to use my time wisely. I allocate specific time slots for study sessions, usually at night when my children are asleep, so I can concentrate on my studies.

How did you balance your work and review? How did you manage your time?

Balancing work and review involved the support of a husband who took on household responsibilities and childcare during the review period. She ensured breaks and family time on Fridays and Saturdays.

How did the SPLE affect your time with family and work?

The SPLE’s impact on her time with family and work was managed through effective time management.

Did you have any strategies in studying for the exam that helped you understand your notes better?

Study strategies included taking breaks when feeling exhausted, summarizing notes in her own words, and praying for memory retention.

What difficulties did you face in preparing for the exam?

Challenges in preparation included sacrificing sleep, dealing with exam anxiety and nerves, and occasional procrastination, which she addressed by refocusing on her goal.

 

How stressed were you in preparing for the exam? How did you manage your stress?

Managing stress involved taking breaks, deep breathing, and prayer. Her motivation stemmed from her determination to achieve her goal and her trust in God’s guidance.

Have you procrastinated on your review? How did you manage procrastination? How did you motivate yourself?

I procrastinated during the first two weeks of my study and felt guilty about it. However, I decided to refocus on my goal and avoid social media as much as possible.

How important is preparing for the SPLE (or other exams)? Can you say that you are well prepared? How so?

She declared her preparedness for the SPLE, highlighting its importance in pursuing personal goals, developing personality aspects, effective learning, and confidence building.

How did you act during the exam? What were your thoughts during the exam?

During the exam, she experienced nervousness, sweaty palms, and a racing mind. To cope, she focused on breathing, remained calm, and recalled God’s presence within her, trusting in His guidance.

Where did you gain the strength that helped you pass the exam?

I always declare the word of the Lord from Philippians 4:13, ‘I can do all things through Jesus Christ who gives me strength.’ I knew from the beginning that with Jesus, I would have the strength to overcome all challenges and achieve victory. I just had to keep my focus on Him.

Did you search for and use guides and tips in your preparation? How effective were they?

Yes, I watched and listened to the inspiring story of Sir. Melvin Buracho, who dreamt of achieving more in life and worked his way through college to become a licensed teacher. During our lectures, he provided us with many effective tips and guidelines for our preparation. One important piece of advice he emphasized was to pray before starting to review. He also shared Bible verses like Luke 1:37, which says, ‘For with God, nothing shall be impossible.

How did passing the exam benefit you in terms of your work, your life, your family, and yourself?

In terms of my work, it has developed my confidence and enhanced my hard-working personality.
In terms of my life, it has built my confidence, self-esteem, and personal strength.
In terms of my family, planning for the future is undoubtedly worth considering.
In terms of myself, it has driven me to work harder to improve my knowledge and skills, while also building my confidence and personal strength

This interview provides a detailed account of Karen Gutierrez Mamot’s journey to passing the board exam, offering insights into the challenges and motivations that led to her success.

Here’s the full list of passers:

April-2023-Special-Professional-Licensure-Examination-for-Professional-Teachers-Results-Released

 

 

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Acknowledgements

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Gracia Amor
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