Marked by rainy weather, images inspired by the sea, and a theme of “Paglaot, Pagdaong” or journeying far out to sea and going back ashore, the UP Diliman Lantern Parade on December 17, 2018 once again brought the community together for a year-end celebration.
Traditionally the culminating activity of the holiday season in UP, the parade is also held in other UP campuses featuring lanterns crafted collaboratively by campus units and organizations, and group field presentations, most of which often call attention to current national issues.
“Ang higit na malalim na pakay ng lantern parade ay ang pagkakataong magkaisa tayong lahat sa pagkilos at madama ang iisang pintig ng ating mga puso, na tayong lahat ay magkabigkis-bigkis bilang isang katawan, isang diwa, isang hangarin [The lantern parade has served the deeper purpose of providing an opportunity for us to act as one, to feel our hearts beating as one, to enable us to merge as one body, mind, and vision],” President Danilo Concepcion said in his Christmas message to the UP System.
In UP Diliman, an additional feature in the parade this year was floats for the Men’s Basketball Team and Men’s Track and Field Team, whose recent performance in the UAAP exceedingly shored up UP pride and rallied the community to intensely support UP athletes. Concepcion acknowledged this achievement of athletes, and bade them to stand with him on stage.
As in previous years, the UP Diliman Lantern Parade culminated on a high note with the presentation of larger-than-life creations from the College of Fine Arts (CFA) classes and ended with a sponsored grand fireworks display.
A mini-concert by The Company, an acclaimed vocal harmony act, also entertained the crowd as they awaited the announcement of winners of the lantern competition, the message of the UP president, and the fireworks. The judges were: Benjamin Cabangis and Ma. Victoria Abaño of the CFA, Tessa Maria Guazon of the Department of Art Studies, and Lee Paje, all visual artists; Nick Deocampo of the Film Institute; and, Vice Chancellor for Research and Development Fidel Nemenzo.
The winners from the CFA showcased mythical creatures, the banig to depict arts, the lumad, and a giant pop-up book of Philippine historical upheavals. The winners among academic units were the College of Arts and Letters, which placed third; the Institute of Islamic Studies, second; and the School of Urban and Regional Planning, first.
Adding to the celebration was the announcement by the President of the government grant to each employee of a Productivity Enhancement Benefit to be given the week after the parade. To those covered by the Collective Negotiation Agreement (CNA), Concepcion announced a grocery allowance to be given before Christmas, and the rice allowance and the Annual Incentive Grant in the new year.
Savings from cost-cutting measures this year, Concepcion said, would enable the administration to grant a CNA Incentive, pending approval from the Department of Budget and Management, which he hoped could be granted before the end of the year. (Jo. Lontoc, UP MPRO)