Cagayan de Oro teen tops storytelling competition at Asian English Olympics

Joseayn Dennies Albasin’s school, the University of Asia and the Pacific, is the overall champion, while other Filipino students also win in different categories of the online competition

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines – A teenager from Cagayan de Oro emerged as the champion in the storytelling competition of the 2022 Asian English Olympics (AEO).

Joseayn Dennies “Chill” Paloma Albasin, a 15-year-old senior high school student at the University of Asia and the Pacific, and number of other Filipino students from (UA&P), University of the Philippines Diliman, Philippine Science High School Main Campus , Philippine Science High School Western Visayas Campus, Philippine Science High School Southern Mindanao Campus, and University of San Agustin won in different categories of the online competition

Albasin topped 80 competitors from across the continent in a series of competition rounds involving rehearsed, improvised, and impromptu one-on-one duels in storytelling. The Bosun, the official student publication of UA&P, said that she is the “youngest grand champion in the history of UA&P competitive achievements.”

The online competition was hosted by the Bina Nusantra English Club (BNEC) of Binus University in Jakarta, Indonesia, from February 20 to February 27.

The points she scored teenager, has always excelled in school. She is the first-ever recipient of the most outstanding student award during her grade school graduation at the Oro Christian Grace School in Cagayan de Oro.

Albasin said she competed in several rounds of storytelling challenges against participants from different countries since February 20. In the elimination round, she recalled, participants were asked to submit a video containing a five-minute story on the pandemic, which trimmed down the original 80 participants to 30.

“My first score was only 82.14. I was frustrated a little because I wanted to carry my team to the quarterfinals at the very least. I wanted to participate in the impromptu storytelling and the improvs,” Albasin said.

She qualified for the quarter-final round on tall tales improvisation and ranked 5th with a score of 82.4.

“My instruction was to continue and exaggerate whatever story the committee would provide in the preparation room. The story assigned to me was about a boy addicted to video games who wished to have no more mother. Then while I was in the middle of telling my impromptu story, a plot twist was again given by the committee along with one noun or an adjective that I had to mention and incorporate in my story. The performance time given was seven minutes,” Albasin said.

Following that round, she rose two notches to No. 3 with only the Top 10 qualified for the semi-finals. She emerged as the top scorer with 90 to win the “best in three points” special award.With the feat, she advanced to the 12-minute finals where she had a one-on-one duel with another Filipino competitor.

Each finalist was given 30 seconds to continue the story. Each finalist was then required to input a conjunction word before passing the story to her opponent. The finalists then took turns to continue the story until the time was up.

“We had to continue a story about an alien who came to Earth, found it desolate with only beasts of nature, but the alien suddenly found a baby. My trajectory was leaning towards hope, the baby being the last of humankind and its only hope. Although the judges gave two plot twists to throw us off, I did not let it catch me off guard and ended the story on a positive note of hope,” Albasin said.

Her team included Jamie Alabin, Chris Paculba, Arielle Mirandilla, Scott Tiamson, and Vier Barreiro.

The participating Filipino students were collectively dubbed as Team Philippines but each school had different mentors and also competed against each other.

UA&P is overall champion, other Filipino students win

The UA&P English Olympiad emerged as the 2022 Asian English Olympics Overall Grand Champion, earning it the Institutional Award, as did Team Philippines.

Other Filipino students who won awards in various categories at the 2022 AEO are the following:

Speech category

  • Champion: Chris Paculaba, UA&P
  • 1st Runner-Up: Jyan Lagare Rubillar, Philippine Science High School Southern Mindanao Campus
  • Best Prepared Speech: Dominique Arcenas, University of San Agustin in Iloilo

Radio drama category

  • Champion: Ma. Andrea Leonessa Ruel, Jeff Emmanuel Sambrano, Leanne Clarisse Losanes, Ellen Faye Ann Yabut, Rawyen Galeno, Science High School Western Visayas Philippine Campus
  • 1st Runner-Up: Rocio Gatdula, Keren de Sagun, Stephen Dusaban, and James Alabin, UA&P
  • 2nd Runner-Up: Joshua Ichiro Añasco, Kasi Guillen, Gabriel Sid Bayate, Sean Dominic Yap, and Renz Frederick Bañas, Philippine Science High School Western Visayas Campus

Newscasting category

  • Champion: Joseph Edric Malimban, University of the Philippines Diliman (also Best Live Report winner)
  • 2nd Runner-Up: Samantha Co, UA&P

Debate category

  • Champion: Scott Tiamson, Keith Mirandilla, UA&P
  • 1st Main Runner-Up: Neil Dominic de Jesus and Jose Raymundo Mayo II, Philippine Science High School
  • 1st Main Best Speaker: Jose Raymundo Mayo II, Philippine Science High School
  • 2nd Main Best Speaker: David Dylan Mencias, Philippine Science High School
  • Co-3rd Main Best Speaker: Neil Dominic de Jesus, Philippine Science High School
  • Co-3rd Main Best Speaker: Hugh Ruzle Mejos, Philippine Science High School
  • 5th Main Best Speaker, Crissa Mae Muyalde, UP Diliman
  • 6th Main Best Speaker, Gabrielle Pacaño, UP Diliman
  • 6th Main Best Speaker, Neackle Ayen Mempin, UP Diliman
  • 8th Main Best Speaker, Lance Martell Ordas, UP Diliman
  • Co-9th Main Best Speaker, James Stephen Balbuena, UP Diliman

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