Back-to-back events as alumni come home to UP

| Written by Arlyn VCD Palisoc Romualdo

The jam-packed Ang Bahay ng Alumni during this year’s Homecoming (Photo by Misael Bacani, UP MPRO)


“Pandayan ng Bayan” (The Country’s Forge)—this is the theme for this year’s alumni events.

The annual Alumni Council Meeting (ACM) was held on August 23 at Ang Bahay ng Alumni, UP Diliman, and, as traditionally practiced, UP graduates gathered in the annual General Alumni Homecoming in the same venue on August 24. Both events were organized by the UP Alumni Association (UPAA).

The ACM features resource speakers from the roster of UPAA awardees. Their presentations provide the bases for the Council resolutions that help guide UPAA initiatives.

This year, the speakers were Ambassador Edgardo B. Espiritu, Most Distinguished Alumnus, and Department of Science and Technology Secretary Fortunato T. Dela Peña, a recipient of the Lifetime Distinguished Achievement Award. Espiritu talked about fighting corruption while Dela Peña discussed the country’s initiatives toward scientific development.


Department of Science and Technology Secretary Fortunato T. Dela Peña at the Alumni Council Meeting (Photo by Misael Bacani, UP MPRO)


As he did last year, UP President Danilo L. Concepcion took the opportunity during the ACM to provide a few updates on the numerous development projects of the University. These include: the soon to be finished Student Union Building; the completed restoration of the Oblation Plaza; the construction of Philippine General Hospital Diliman; the completion and utilization of the Epsilon Chi Wellness Center; the construction of the Shopping Center; faculty and staff housing plans; the renovation of dormitories; plans for a bigger Balay Atleta; the renovation and upgrading of infirmaries; and, the new UP ID, which he said may be made available to alumni in the future.


A perspective of the Student Union Building, which is expected to be completed by the end of the year (Screen grab from Upward, Onward, Forward: the UP President’s Report to the Alumni 2019 by TVUP)


Concepcion also shared the good news of UP’s climb in the London-based Times Higher Education list of top universities in Asia for 2019. UP went up 61 notches, breaking into the top 100 for the first time at 95th place from last year’s 156th, which also made it the fourth best university in Southeast Asia. He also said something that elicited the loudest cheer from the Council. Concepcion reminded them of what he said last year: that the UP men’s basketball team would become UAAP champions during his term.

The next day’s homecoming was a more relaxed, less serious gathering. It was divided into four parts. First was the opening, where the Alumni Council resolutions were presented and speeches were delivered by Concepcion and UPAA President and Alumni Regent Reynaldo C. Laserna.


In the left photo, UPAA President Reynaldo C. Laserna welcomes everyone to the Homecoming and in the right photo, UPAA Legal Counsel Raul R. Reyes present the Council resolutions to the alumni. (Photos by Misael Bacani, UP MPRO)


“Huwag nating biguin ang sa atin ay umaasa ng lingap. Sana ay isama natin ang mga kapos-palad sa ating magandang kapalaran.” (Let us not fail those who have placed their faith in us, in hopes that we may uplift their lives. In our success, let us not leave our underprivileged fellowmen behind.)—UP President Danilo L. Concepcion to the alumni (Photo by Misael Bacani, UP MPRO)


The second part of the Homecoming program was the Alumni Awards ceremony and the third part was dinner.


The 2019 distinguished alumni and alumni chapter take the stage. (Photo by Misael Bacani, UP MPRO)


Soprano Myramae Meneses serenades the UPAA awardees. (Photo by Misael Bacani, UP MPRO)


“A UP education is a great gift and privilege. . . .The University gave us the skills, the knowledge, and wisdom that we needed to face our future; honed our talents towards achieving our dreams; and most importantly, provided us the values that we hold dear and that also formed our character: love of country, service to our countrymen, professionalism and pursuit of excellence, integrity, and a sense of justice and fairness.”—Ambassador Edgardo B. Espiritu, UPAA Most Distinguished Alumnus for 2019, in his response on behalf of the alumni awardees (Photo by Misael Bacani, UP MPRO)


The fourth and final portion of the program was the alumni’s time to let loose with performances by Baihana, and the diamond, golden, ruby, and silver jubilarians.


Baihana’s “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy” with the UP Dance Company (Photo by Misael Bacani, UP MPRO)


The Diamond Jubilarians (Photos by Misael Bacani, UP MPRO)


The Golden Jubilarians (Photos by Misael Bacani, UP MPRO)


The Ruby Jubilarians (Photos by Misael Bacani, UP MPRO)


The Silver Jubilarians (Top photo by Arlyn VCD Palisoc Romualdo and bottom photo by Misael Bacani, both of UP MPRO)


The singing and dancing begin with “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You.” In the left photo, UP President Danilo L. Concepcion serenades and dances with Atty. Gabriela Roldan Concepcion. In the middle photo, UP Executive Vice President Teodoro J. Herbosa dances with a fellow Ruby Jubilarian. In the right photo, it is former UP Assistant Vice President for Academic Affairs and Office of Institutional (now International) Linkages Director Antoinette Bass-Hernandez and her husband, Leo, who is a Ruby Jubilarian. (Left photo by Misael Bacani and middle and right photos by Arlyn VCD Palisoc Romualdo, both of UP MPRO)