Reserve Officers’ Training Corps standout Kristiane Betinol who received last year an award from the US Army ROTC has moved a step closer to achieving her goal of joining the Philippine military like her father and great grandfather before her.
Betinol, daughter of Philippine Army Major Eliseo Betinol, Jr. and great granddaughter of late colonel Vicente Nunag Jr. who was known for his exploits as a guerilla soldier during the Japanese occupation in Bohol, has been accepted at the Philippine Military Academy (PMA), the country’s premier military school.
The 20-year-old who traces her roots to Talibon, Bohol, is set to transfer from the University of the Philippines (UP) to PMA next schoolyear.
Betinol had earlier told the Chronicle that she wanted to become a lawyer but her stint with UP’s ROTC has inspired her to take her military training to the next level.
“Originally, ganahan noon ko mag-abogada. Gisuwayan lang ag ROTC sa UP-D, unya kay nalingaw na man ko,” she said.
Betinol who is a cadet major in the country’s ROTC has already reaped several awards even at the onset of her pursuit of joining the military.
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She was honored in Guam as one of the best performers in the Cultural Understanding and Leadership Proficiency (CULP) program under the Philippine-US Mutual Defense Treaty.
She was selected among 30 cadets from the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) who engaged in rigid strategic planning sessions, survival training and field training exercises with their Guam counterparts from November 13 to 19 in 2017.
Besides her personal desire to join the military, Betinol admitted that her father and great grandfather served as influence in pushing her to enroll at PMA where the AFP sources most of its senior officers.
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“I was influenced growing up. I grew up with my great grandparents, and my father was also an officer,” Betinol said. “We always visited where my father was assigned and I got used to life in the camp.”
Betinol will be part of the PMA’s graduating class of 2022 should she complete 284 units in four years of academic training.
She will not be the lone Boholano in the batch however as other Bohol natives have also been admitted to PMA for the upcoming school year, namely Macep Nuneza of Tagbilaran City, Ivan Ramirez of Talibon, Vince Cabagnot of Tagbilaran, Ariel Lapore of Danao, Joel Pogoy of Talibon and Elvin Betinol of Antequera.
The entire class is comprised of 335 men and 65 women.
This year, 75 women graduated from the PMA as part of the Alab Tala Class of 2018. It was the biggest number of female graduates in 25 years since the academy started accepting female applicants.
Of the 75, 38 went to join the Philippine Army, 19 went to the Philippine Air Force and 18 joined the Philippine Navy.