Get to know our fellows: Czarecah Oropilla
Czarecah Oropilla, also known as Eya comes from the Philippines and always planned to do a Ph.D. - Having done an Erasmus Mundus masters program made me realize how big the world is, how small I am and how there is so much more to learn.
Please, tell us a little bit about yourself.
– I have a Bachelor of Science in Family Life and Child Development from the University of the Philippines. I have a Masters in Early Childhood Education and Care, a joint international program of Oslo and Akershus University College (now Oslo Metropolitan University), University of Gothenburg, Dublin Institute of Technology (now Technical University Dublin), and the University of Malta through an Erasmus Mundus scholarship from the European Commission.
In addition to an extensive academic career, Eya has also taught bachelors and early childhood classes at the University of the Philippines. She has also worked as a research intern at a research center and as a teaching assistant in an early years institution in Dublin, Ireland. - Before doing my Ph.D., I have been working as an operations manager of an international educational-entertainment role-play theme park for children and their families in the Philippines.
Fortunate to be a part of Bildung and Pedagogical Practices at the Western University of Applied Sciences.
Eya always knew she wanted to embark on a research journey that led to a Ph.D.
– Why did you choose to enter this program?
– All of my past research projects have included children’s perspectives, so this is something that I wanted to continue doing. In my experience, researching with children always yields fresh views that are often overlooked and taken for granted. I wanted to demonstrate how much impact and potential combining research and children’s perspectives have on our present and future societies.
Eya shares her excitement with us over being a part of Bildung and Pedagogical Practices at the Western University of Applied Scienes.
– When I was preparing my application, I was very excited at the prospect of being part of a program that is interdisciplinary because studying intergenerational engagements requires knowledge coming from different fields of science. I consider myself fortunate to have been accepted into this program.
Argues for the need to be intentional and deliberate in conceptualizing and implementing intergenerational engagements and programs, particularly during this time of an ongoing pandemic in her Ph.D.
– Could you tell us about your research project?
– My research is about intergenerational engagements between young children and older adults/ the elderly. I became interested in this topic primarily because my parents recently became grandparents and wanted them to have meaningful memories with their grandson. Also, I have come across TV shows and social media posts featuring children going to elderly homes, which made me reflect on my own intergenerational experiences. I saw similarities and differences in experiences, making me reflect on how much more there is to know about intergenerational engagements in specific contexts. I saw this as a space for further research.
Eya has, like so many of us, been affected by the ongoing covid-19 pandemic.
- Initially, I wanted my research project to focus on listening to the voices of young children and older adults as they engage in shared activities. I was curious about what they would share and learn from and with each other. I also wanted to document how these engagements would happen through visual methods. However, I could not push through with my original research design because of the ongoing pandemic, so I changed my research focus. Now, I am interested in finding out the conditions for intergenerational engagements to happen in early childhood institutions such as kindergartens and families or communities, especially during the time of a pandemic. I have used online forms, an online focus group discussion, and observation to generate data. I am still in the process of analyzing the data that I have.
– With your research, what contribution do you hope to make?
– Through my research, I argue for the need to be intentional and deliberate in conceptualizing and implementing intergenerational engagements and programs, particularly during this time of an ongoing pandemic. I hope to point to certain conditions for these engagements to happen both in formal and informal settings. I also aim to discuss intergenerational engagements as a glocal concept that needs both global and local understandings and interpretations and an arena for cultural formation that has the potential to lead towards sustainable futures. Lastly, I am taking this opportunity to document and generate data during an arguably historical time.