A troubled past did not hinder FEU BA Communications senior Jose Gabriel Bayan to become an accomplished student and youth movement leader.

“I was involved in gangs, fraternities and got kicked out of school before I decided to turn my life around.”

Gab is the FEU Central Student Organization President and was recently named one of the 2017 Jose Rizal Model Students of the Philippines. The distinction is given to individuals who epitomize the achievements and ideals of Jose Rizal.

The BA in Communication senior was selected for his efforts on Youth Empowerment through socio civic consciousness, media literacy and evangelism.

He labeled this the BAYANi Movement.

His advocacy started when he joined the Sangguniang Kabataan and became Chairman of the Kabakas Youth Organization.

“I got the chance to closely interact with out-of-school kids in Santolan, Pasig. This is where I saw how inspiring stories moved people into action.”

Gab has also partnered with other local governments and different schools to reach a wider audience. He is hoping that his story and of those of other extraordinary individuals push other youth to become more engaged in social and community issues.

Asked about his leadership assets that he thinks embody those of Rizal, Bayan says,

“Genuine leadership is about embracing who we are despite our weaknesses, and inspiring others to do the same.”

He joins other Rizal model student awardees from FEU namely Jordan Cabandong (2011), Michael Lava (2012) and Titus Roland Tagaan (2015).