Volunteering in typhoon-ravaged Philippines

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Rico Selga, in the Philippines town of Guiuan, arrives to help during Super Typhoon Haiyan.

Rico Selga, in the Philippines town of Guiuan, arrives to help during Super Typhoon Haiyan.

Enrico “Rico” Selga is a well-known figure to many at Clark College. Either you recognize him from his time as a nursing student from the 1990s, or you saw him receive Clark College’s Outstanding Alumni Award in 2010, or you’ve ordered a latte from him at one of the two coffee kiosks he and his wife, Jennifer, run on Clark’s main campus.

However, not everyone knows what he does with his “off” hours. For years, Selga has volunteered with the church-based nonprofit Medical Teams International in areas pummeled by disaster or conflict. He’s done so much of this work that MTI now sends him as a “First-in Team” member, tasked with scouting the area and organizing resources before the rest of the medical team arrives.

When the Philippines were hit by Super Typhoon Haiyan on November 8, 2013–demolishing buildings and killing thousands of people–Selga, who is originally from the Philippines, was one of the first volunteers to land in the hard-hit town of Guiuan. We wrote about Selga’s trip to treat earthquake victims in Haiti in a previous issue of Clark 24/7; here, Selga describes his latest experience in his own words.

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  • Concerned Alumni

    I would expect someone this compassionate to be a little more compassionate towards his customers, the students of Clark, instead of nickel and dimming for things such as a napkin to clean up a spill or some water to microwave for food. Take into consider their plight and needs, but then again it does seem that he is just following the example of indifference that Clark College has towards the students.

    • Rhonda Morin

      I am sorry that you’ve had a negative experience. I’d be happy to connect you with Bob Williamson, Vice President of Administrative Services, Bill Belden, Vice President of Student Affairs or another person in the administration to address your concerns. They, like many others at the college, are fully invested in making the student experience a positive one. We appreciate and value your feedback.

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