University of the Philippines officials and student organizations gave the first year students of UP Diliman (UPD) a meaningful and spectacular reception during the Freshie Welcome Assembly program held on August 7 at the University Theater (Villamor Hall) in UP Diliman, Quezon City.
Hosted by the UP Diliman Office of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs (OVCSA), in partnership with the University Student Council (USC), the program marked the start of academic year 2017-18; and introduced the first year students of UPD to the administrators of the University, to their respective colleges and student organizations, and to the ways of the Iskolar ng Bayan.
UP President Danilo L. Concepcion, UP Diliman Chancellor Michael L. Tan, Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Jerwin F. Agpaoa, and representatives of student organizations gave inspiring messages to UP’s new students.
In his message, Concepcion assured the Freshies that UP was here to nurture the scholars’ commitment to honor and excellence, coupled with compassion and service to the nation. “You can expect to live some of the best years of your life in this University because of our traditions of liberal education and academic freedom. I assure you that this is a place where you are free to express your views and open to countless interactions with people from different walks of life,” he said.
“Use every opportunity you can to learn not just from your teachers, but also from your classmates, peers, and other people around you. UP is a place where you can explore many ways of achieving your dreams and becoming the persons you wish to be,” Concepcion said.
“Gamitin sana ninyo ang edukasyon nang tama at wasto tungo sa kapakinabangan, hindi lamang ng inyong sarili at mga mahal sa buhay, kundi tungo sa kapakinabangan ng buong sambayanan. Tunay, hindi naghihintay ng kabayaran mula sa inyo ang ating mga kababayan. Subalit sila ay labis na malulugod, at magpapasalamat, kung kayo naman ay magsusukli nang taos-puso sa kanila,” Concepcion advised.
Tan, as part of his introduction of UP culture to the students, shared tips in relation to University life: eat right; get enough sleep; exercise; use deadlines; if things don’t work out, take a break; life is short, express yourself; cultivate and nurture new interests; develop your passions; laugh often; love much; live on well; and, learn to be more patient and kind.
Tan also invited the audience to visit and support the Lumad’s ‘bakwit’ school – a temporary and alternative learning camp set up for and by indigenous people who fled martial law and militarization in Mindanao – presently holding classes in the UPD International Center. He added that UPD will be hosting hundreds more indigenous people in September.
The deans of Colleges or their representatives introduced their respective first year students by academic cluster; the latter responded with jubilant cheers and chants. Outstanding performances by renowned student groups – the UP Streetdance Club, Overduo, UP ROTC Symphonic Band, UP Pintinig, UP Filipiniana Dance Group, UP Dancesport Society, UP Concert Chorus, and the UP Pep Squad – made the event more memorable for the Freshies.
UPD USC chair, Benjie Aquino, and Freshie Council chair, Colleen Chua, introduced the members of their respective student councils. Freshie representative, Jayson Catindig, delivered the welcome message in behalf of the new batch of mga Iskolar ng Bayan. Right before the singing of the UP Naming Mahal at the end of the program, about a hundred student leaders staged a “lightning rally”. They highlighted the calls for free education and commitment to service to fellow Iskolar ng Bayan, the marginalized sectors, and the nation. (Fred Dabu, UP MPRO)
Click here for more photos of the event.