THE year was 1981. Merly Gaspay was 18 years old and she was with her sister, seeking employment in Makati City. They were among the many people who lined up along PLDT Malugay, which then had a mass hiring. “I have always wondered if it was luck or destiny,” Gaspay said.
40 years later, Gaspay just celebrated her 60th birthday and her 40 years of service in PLDT. “But looking back, I think it was destined for me. Being a PLDT employee was my destiny.”
Gaspay shared how she took a series of tests before getting a telegram from the company in February 1982. Back then, everything was traditional and analog. But even then, Gaspay knew how to break barriers and make her mark.
She was the only woman in her department that navigated through electrical engineering, jump wires, and mechanical switches. “I was one of the boys,” she said. Her curiosity did wonders. She never stopped learning. “I studied again. This time, I studied BS Electronics Engineering (BS ECE) in the Central Colleges of the Philippines. I had to take flexible hours in order to balance work and study. Back then, I was also the breadwinner of my family, so I had to make ends meet while trying to pursue my passion,” Gaspay said.
Gaspay was recently feted for 40 years of service in PLDT.
In 1996, the company offered trainings abroad. Gaspay was recommended by her manager. She went to Siemens in Portugal to learn more about the EWSD switch, a digital switching system.
When she returned, she persevered to finish her studies. After eight years, she finally finished BS ECE in 1999.
“I never stopped learning because I wanted to be better at what I do. I don’t want mediocre work, because I wanted to be excellent. I wanted to give the best quality of service that I can give for our customers,” Gaspay said.
Currently, Gaspay serves as a Senior Telecom Engineer under PLDT’s Network Field Services. “The pandemic was difficult for all of us, especially in our line of work. We needed to go out and be in the frontlines because it is our duty to serve,” Gaspay said.
In her 40 years, Gaspay has achieved many things. Her legacy is to make sure that her commitment to service will bring PLDT to greater heights and ultimately, touch the lives of customers across the country.