April 18, 2022 (11:11 PM)

3 min read

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Infographics by Stephanie Alexa Ang

After passing the 2020/21 Bar Examinations and becoming one of the 14 passers with “excellent performance” (with a grade above 90%), Ateneo de Davao University (AdDU) Law graduate Atty. Francis Roel Dulay shared how God intervened in his plans in taking the Bar.

In a Facebook post, Dulay wrote that the school year 2018 to 2019 was supposed to be his last year in law school, and he was supposed to take and pass the November 2019 Bar.

However, in September 2018, he was diagnosed with colon cancer and planned to go back to school in November 2018 after his surgery.

After Dulay’s surgery in October 2018, he had a colostomy bag and underwent another operation because of an infection. He was then diagnosed with Mucinous Colorectal Adenocarcinoma and had to undergo chemotherapy, which held him from going back to Law school in November.

After undergoing radiation therapy from January to February of 2019, his third plan to study again in June 2019 was canceled as he started his six cycles of intravenous chemotherapy in April.

In June 2020, during the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, Dulay resumed his studies after his operation to remove the colostomy bag in January of the same year.

“Studying during the pandemic is a challenge. I’m more of an auditory learner, so I learn by listening to lectures. Zoom classes get interrupted by power interruptions, bad signal, among others,” Dulay told Atenews.

He shared that his family kept him motivated as they were hopeful that he would graduate and pass the Bar.

“Also, my girlfriend who calls me out when I tend to overspend time doing other things and forget about studying. My friends also who are very supportive,” he added.

Dulay said when reviewing, he still goes on dates with his girlfriend, where they watch movies, series, and anime. 

“I think it’s the balance between studying and enjoying life that helped me do well,” he emphasized.

Best Bar Ever

Dulay commended the 2020/21 Bar Examinations for being the first to conduct digitalized and regionalized bar examinations, being more inclusive and accessible to people in the province, and removing the demerit of having bad penmanship.

When asked if the mechanisms and adjustments imposed for the Bar Exam are appropriate and justifiable in line with the public health crisis, he thinks the Bar Chairperson and the Supreme Court Justices had their best interest in mind in choosing the mechanisms to implement and adjustments to make.

“Some might view it as unfair, but I can’t criticize it as inappropriate or unjustifiable. It’s not perfect, but I think it’s great,” he added.

Dulay also shared that it would be great to continue the digitalized and regionalized format and see another innovation in the following bar exams. 

The AdDU alumnus advised aspiring lawyers to not be “[too] disappointed by setbacks. Be disappointed a little then continue striving for your dreams.”

“Work hard, study hard, pray hard, and enjoy life. Learn how to strike a balance,” Dulay said.

He also advised aspiring lawyers to study seriously, understand, and not just read. 

Dulay believes that all hard work will pay off in God’s time.

Garnering 96.49 percent, AdDU ranked fourth among the schools with 51 to 100 Candidates for First-Time Candidates.

Moreover, the University’s overall performance was 93.85 percent, wherein 61 out of 65 takers passed the exam.

AdDU also has 22 exemplary passers with grades ranging from 85 to 90 percent, ranking the University first in this category.

A total of 8,241 examinees out of 11,402 passed the 2020/2021 Bar Examinations for a national passing rate of 72.28 percent.



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