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Master plumber shares tips on how to ace licensure exams

By Sally A. Altea


“Plumbing lang yan. Huwag ka nang magreview!”


Josh Marvin Malto, the 9th placer in the recent Master Plumber licensure exam (MPLE) from Daraga, Albay, would often hear these words from his peers while he was preparing for the exams.


“I am a full-time field engineer so my main difficulty is time management. I’m out in the field until 5 p.m.,” Malto said.


Malto is a civil engineering graduate of Bicol University in 2022. He became a licensed engineer in 2023.


At first, it was out of curiosity that he decided to try the plumbing licensure exam. It was when he learned and understood the importance of a proper plumbing system that he became determined to pass the exams.


“I realized that there’s still much that needs to be done in our community to lessen the problems on water supply and drainage in our community. I want to help the government,” he said.


Malto said an efficient plumbing system is essential in a building infrastructure system, from sourcing out clean water to discharging waste water.


Although he was focused on passing the exam, Josh admitted he was not expecting to be in the top 10.


So how did he do it? Here are some of his tips for future examinees:


Josh Marvin Malto of Barangay Bañag in Daraga, Albay is the 9th placer in the February 2023 Master Plumber Licensure Exams.


Learn from the passers


“When it comes to the board exam, it’s important to ask from the passers since it’s hard to review if you don’t know if your materials are outdated or updated,” he said.


Malto said he asked tips from his friends who passed the exam and reviewed the lectures and materials he collected from them.


“I also asked tips from my workmates who are skilled in plumbing to balance theory and real life scenario,” he added.


Be consistent


It’s important to focus and set the time for review. “In taking the exam, it’s important to prepare. Since I work in the morning, I oftentimes review at 2 a.m. or 3 a.m.. I write the notes, formula and organize tables, concepts and terms,” he said.


Even at work, he reviewed and scanned the codes.


“I didn’t know those things at first but as I reviewed, I progressed and I understood. Consistency is the key,” he added.


Learn the basics


Malto admitted initial confusion as the field is different from his profession.


“It’s ok if you don’t know at first. I was also confused. There are many things I don’t know. So for the examinees, just enjoy the process,” he said.


“It’s important to learn the basic concepts. As you understand the basic fundamentals, you’ll appreciate its application,” he added.


Pray and be punctual


First thing on the day of exam, pray for strength.


“Best thing to do on the day of exam is to pray for strength. For peace of mind, better come early on the venue and bring everything needed,” he said.


Josh stressed on the need to focus and re-check the answers.


“The day of exam is the day of judgement so it is important to carefully analyze the answers. Every point counts so triple check the answers and the forms that need to be filled-up. Don’t be afraid or ashamed if you’re the last one in the room. Maximize the time,” he added.


PRC-regulated professions


Malto is one of the 1,594 passers out of 3, 594 examinees nationwide for the MPLE.


Jerome Bañes, chief professional regulation officer of the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) Bicol, said the MPLE is one of the 49 professions regulated by the PRC.


“Sometimes we look down on master plumbers. But it is a regulated profession. It needs a licensure exam to obtain a valid certificate of registration and license,” he said.


Bañes noted that the profession is created and governed by a separate law so it is prohibited to practice without passing the licensure exam.


Master Plumbing Licensure Exam is one of the 49 professions regulated by the Professional Regulatory Commission.


Graduates of Engineering and Architecture courses are eligible to take the exam. Non-degree holders but with at least five years of practice in the profession can also take the exam, subject to evaluation by authorized personnel from the PRC central office in Manila. (PIA5/Albay)

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