The one of many

Senior takes on being only male in child guidance


Karley Crawford / Legacy Media

Senior Virgil Tumbaga leads the children in a group song.

Babies. Nursing. Daycare. While these things are often associated with females, senior Virgil Tumbaga is fighting to beat the odds. But, when the girl to boy ratio is 19 to 1, it seems as if he does not stand a chance.

Tumbaga was the only male in child development last year. Child development is a course available to students that introduces them to the education and professional care of children from birth to around eight or nine years of age. The foundation of this course inspired Tumbaga to join child guidance where his status as the only male was maintained. For him, this course was a defining moment in his career.

“It’s funny because I’ve never had any interaction with children other than watching my cousins on the weekend,” Tumbaga said. “Once I took child development last year, I realized it would help me in my career of being a pediatrician, giving me an understanding of my future patients, so I could connect with them and not just treat them.”

Some may feel being the ‘odd one out’ is an advantage, but Tumbaga feels differently.

“It feels a little intimidating at times for child guidance because students come in with a mentality of ‘girls can take better cares of children than guys,’” he said. “It’s not awkward, but it’s different to be in a class with all girls. I’m accepted, but I’m not one of the girls.”

Sometimes people become intimidated by competition or other peers when it comes to going for what they want, but others gain a great experience from it.

“I would recommend it be because it really is a rewarding experience,” Tumbaga said. “The little boys look up to me a lot. For guys, it’s like being behind enemy lines, but it’s a great experience especially if it’s their passion. No one should be afraid to chase their dreams.”