Sto. Niño devotee tops June 2013 nursing board exams

Sto. Niño devotee tops June 2013 nursing board exams
By Jhunnex Napallacan

Inquirer Visayas 12:19 am | Tuesday, July 9th, 2013

CEBU CITY—Believing in the power of prayer paid off for Beverly Anne Felicio Balagon.
Balagon, 20, has realized how powerful prayer is after she topped the June 2013 nursing licensure examinations.
“The results were so unexpected. I never thought my prayers would be answered. The power of prayer is unbelievable,” she said.
Balagon is a devotee of Señor Sto. Niño and during the feast of the Señor Sto. Niño, she participated in the novena Masses until the feast day.
Before she took the exams, she visited the Basilica del Santo Niño and other churches. Balagon, a resident of Canduman, Mandaue City, said she prayed every night before and after she took the exams.

Passing rate

A graduate of Velez College in Cebu City, Balagon topped the 16,219 passers (42.8 percent passing rate) in the examinations.
There were 37,887 who took the examinations. Nine graduates from Cebu made it to the topnotchers’ list, including five graduates from Velez College.
On Sunday evening, Balagon said she was monitoring the release of the results but these were not released by the Professional Regulations Commission. So, at 1 a.m. Monday, she decided to go to sleep.
However, on Monday morning, she was awakened by a call from the owner of her review center, Carl Balita, informing her of the good news.
Balagon said when Balita called her up, she assumed that she was one of the topnotchers because graduates like her were told to expect calls if they landed in the Top 10. But she did not expect to be the first placer.


“Oh my God. I was trembling. I was crying hard,” the ecstatic Balagon said on the phone.
She recalled that the questions were so difficult that she even doubted if she could pass the exams.
Balagon said she turned to prayers every night. Although she prayed to be among the topnotchers, she did not expect her prayers would be answered.

Prodded by mother

Balagon is the elder of two sisters. Her mother, Maria Victoria, is a dermatologist and her father, Bambi Ceferino Balagon, is an engineer.
She took up nursing upon the prodding of her mother. After she graduated from high school at Colegio de la Immaculada Concepcion in Cebu City, she was undecided on what course to take. She heeded her mother’s advice and learned to love the course.

Graduate studies

Balagon said she had no clear plans as yet but she would be studying for a master’s degree in nursing before deciding if she would take up medicine or another course like law. She credited her school and the support system for her success. Balagon graduated in March but no one in her batch received academic honors.

Dean’s lister

However, Ma. Carol Kangleon, dean of the Velez College of Nursing, said Balagon and the other topnotchers from Velez College were consistent dean’s listers. Velez College graduates were among the topnotchers in previous examinations, Kangleon said, but the last time the school had a first placer was in 1993. Since five of its graduates landed in the Top 10 this year, Velez College is now ranked No. 8 among top-performing schools. Kangleon said the topnotchers could expect cash rewards for their achievements from the school management.