#UAAPCDC2015 scoop: Meet UP Pep Squad captain Cam Lagmay

Barry Viloria on Oct 03, 2015 11:20 AM
#UAAPCDC2015 scoop: Meet UP Pep Squad captain Cam Lagmay
Follow Cam Lagmay on Instagram: @camlagmay (All photos courtesy of Cam Lagmay, UPD.edu.ph, and @shirthappensMNL)

You’d easily spot Cam Lagmay in a crowd. Her voice is steely when she speaks. Her smile grows from ear to ear when she laughs. Even with a shirt, her toned arms and legs reveal her around-single-digit body fat. Her energy pulsates. Even in a sea of other members of the famed UP Pep Squad—maybe with the same frame or same level of energy, she… stuns. UAAP CDC segment sponsor Samsung already knew that from watching her in last year’s competition. Hence, her Stunner title.

This year, Cam, who’s in her senior year taking up Family Life and Childhood Development, is the team captain. And it’s in this job where her jolly and jumpy demeanor makes a sudden shift.

“I am a disciplinarian,” she declares. “I believe preparation is key in everything you do especially in your performance. I’m very process-oriented, so if you’re not disciplined and you don’t show discipline in training, I will let you know.”

There’s a lot of pressure on Cam, who is as keen on bringing back the title to UP. It’s not just because she’s now the leader of a team that has garnered immense popularity from fans both in and out of the Diliman community—by performing memorable stunts that have raked eight titles in the CDC now while leaving viewers looping their shows online awed; and making the country proud with various awards from past international tournaments like the World Cheerleading Championships and the Cheerleading Asia International Open Championships.

This is also Cam’s dream, one she has journeyed to since she was young. Growing up, she watched the alumnae of her high school (Saint Pedro Poveda) who later got into UP as part of Pep.

“I was a sporty child—I was always athletically involved. I did gymnastics, badminton, soccer, ice skating, and all those that helped me become very agile in the physical sense.”

Making it big in the cheerleading community easily became this bibo kid’s goal. That’s why when she was looking for a college to study at, she quickly chose UP because, she says, “Why not the best?” She got into the school through the varsity program. She only got into Pep’s Team B at first, so she had to double her work by taking more gymnastics lessons later on. She finally saw her dream coming true when she made it to the competing team in her sophomore year.

You’d say Cam got more familiarized with the glam of it all. But there wasn’t, she says. There were the 6pm-12 midnight trainings. She had to give up her social life. She had to be smarter about what she’d do her spare time (“It’s just school, Pep, home for me.”). There were more, say, tangible sacrifices she had to go through like shaving her head in her first competition at the UAAP CDC, following Coach Lalaine Pereña’s “Oblation” theme in Season 75.

But Cam seems to have shown no regrets. She has the simplest reason for this: This is her passion.

“People don’t easily get to see the hard work behind it all. But whenever I’m with UP Pep, I realize that I can be so much more. It’s not just about what we show during those 6 or so minutes on the mat, because you can only show so much”

“If you watch us closely, you’ll get to see the real work behind our struggles. The experience has contributed a lot to who I am as a person today,” she says.

Cam, who plans to study medicine after college, knows what lies ahead in later’s competition will be something more. It’s time for her dream to become its realest. Her plan, as usual: To go all out, all heart.

“My motivation is my love for my school. There are a lot of believers of the UP Pep. Later, In our #UPuso-themed performance (derived from “Utak, Puso”), we will pay tribute to the student-athletes."

“This is also something the UP community can easily relate to. We hope this will make them really proud.”

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