For years, the Center for Guidance and Counseling (CGC) has been training talented and service-oriented Mapúans who are willing to serve as peer facilitators to their fellow students. These students compose the Guidance Society of Mapúa (GSM) which has served as the Center for Guidance and Counseling's student service-arm. Its vision is to respond to the developmental needs of the students by providing them with balanced activities and experiences in participatory leadership.
Consistent with its strong conviction in student's potentialities and assets, the society aims its effort to help students in two ways - assisting them in their personal growth and development; and utilizing their personal commitment and voluntary services in the delivery of the guidance program and services to their fellow students.
Along with the different transitions the institute has to go through, GSM has also undergone some restructuring. The most recent change the group has had undeniably gave the organization a huge transformation. CGC's thrust of producing well-adjusted individuals and peer helpers at the same time was complemented by the overwhelming demands of international students to be accommodated.
In support to the initiatives of some foreign students who are cognizant of the needs of their fellow foreign students to be part of a school community without any feelings of discomfort due to racial difference, the Center for Guidance and Counseling took the effort to gather interested foreign students to be part of the Guidance Society of Mapúa.
As a preliminary step, a survey on school adjustment was conducted in order to identify the common concerns of international students and to determine ways to address them. The survey was answered by 53 foreign students, mostly belonging to batches 2009 and 2010. These batches are perceived to have greater adjustment concerns compared to higher batches who considerably have longer time spent in the institute.
The Center for Guidance and Counseling, being the advising party, consistently took time to facilitate essential activities that would address the needs of these international students. Instead of forming an organization of international students, they were adopted to eventually become members of the Guidance Society of Mapúa. True enough, the succeeding activities marked the birth of a new organization with a defined set of objectives and a desire to work towards achieving them. Hence, the name of the organization became GSM-IS to signify that members are mostly "International Students".
Members of the newly-formed Guidance Society of Mapúa-International Students then were able to establish themselves as a group with a set of competent officers, under the supervision of the guidance counselors who have served as their advisers. From then on, GSM-IS has committed itself to upholding the legacy that CGC has envisioned during its earlier conceptualization.
GSM-IS activities include, but are not limited to Freshmen Orientation, Seminar-Workshops on Self-Awareness and Interpersonal Relationship, Facilitating Training Seminar, Leadership Training Seminar, Teambuilding Activities, and Cultural Night.
With this organization, the members are able to gain social learning experiences, create an avenue where potentials can be shared, developed, and maximized, and establish social support (sense of belongingness, interpersonal relationships/ social interaction, helping resources, and teamwork).