Virtual Goks Tour


When lockdown was implemented in Metro Manila almost a year ago, none of us imagined how long it would take for us to see our friends and classmates again. Within the first few months, there were promises and plans to see each other once lockdown was lifted. But as the world fell into the hands of the COVID-19 pandemic, plans got pushed back and classes dragged on. We continued with our studies, often wondering why everything felt off. It was a hard pill to swallow, but while it may be easier to access learning materials and modules online, there is still this sense of longing for our college home. Could this be the reason why we felt so unmotivated all along?

The Gokongwei Building houses CCS students, giving them an aura of belonging for the rest of their college stay. Popularly known as Goks, the building went beyond being a center for learning; it was a safe space for many. It gave students a place to reconnect - may it be within the Student’s Nook or the lobby. It is here where you could work on your projects, play some games with friends, or just get lost listening to the collective chatter as you gobble down the lunch you brought from Agno. From academics achievements and breakdowns to relationship heartaches, Goks witnessed it all. These memories and milestones give meaning to the building that we stay in. Needless to say, Goks was and will always be an integral part of CCS students’ lives. Who would have thought that, after almost a year, we would be able to revisit our home through Minecraft?

The Virtual Goks Tour presented students with a replica of the Gokongwei Building built in Minecraft. Photos of Goks were collected from students to make sure that even the nooks and crannies were built as accurately as Minecraft could allow. The builders Sharmaine Gaw, Vincent Tan, Matthew Gan, and Mikey Espina were able to give us a tour that invoked positive feelings among the viewers as the tour premiered on January 9, 2021.

Each floor and room holds a special meaning for students in the upper batch. As the builders moved from one floor to another, it would not be hard for someone in the upper batch to connect a memory to it. But for the freshmen who never got the chance to step foot in Goks, this tour helped them gain hope that one day, they would also be able to craft memories as many students before them did. [quote from frosh]

With the ongoing Goks renovation, the building will certainly not look similar to what the tour presented, or even to the Goks most of us are familiar with. It may seem like a cold pool we would be afraid to dive into, but in its depth, it would still be the Goks that has housed us for years. Nobody can gauge how long the pandemic will linger in our world, but until then, we have the comfort of the memories we made in Goks to help us boost through our days. When the world is ready, we could return to make more memories and gain more milestones. After all, Goks is not just a building — it’s our home.