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Posts Tagged ‘University of Santo Tomas’


Each day is a stepping stone into future days on the upward path. Enrich each day with gratitude and a time of quiet. – Lillian Marshall

Gosh, you won’t believe this! Yesterday I braved the traffic by taking  a commute   to visit the book sale at Books for Less in Pasig City. It is right in front of La Consolacion College where my two kids spent their high school so the place is quite familiar. This is the first time that I visited  BFL and I was  like, “Oh, Oh, I don’t know what books to buy”.

There were so many volumes on so many subjects  that I was in a quandary which to choose. Some look practically new with the dust jackets still intact but of course, BFL sells secondhand books.  I don’t mind buying secondhand books, I’ve done it for years at Booksale. I only get to buy new ones on the works of authors I am collecting  and those lovely editions that one can’t help having on one’s shelf. Sometimes, I just close my eyes and don’t look at the price :)  This time though, I enjoyed an hour looking for well-known authors that I like, discovering some fiction books that look interesting.  I was able to buy twelve books in all,  including a small volume  entitled Stepping Stones (meditations in a garden) with lovely flower illustrations on each page. I just love it. I also found another collection of short stories by one of my favorite authors, Rosamunde Pilcher. It was such a joy to see two more volumes of L. M. Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables, classic stories that never grow old with time. I hope I will be able to find the missing three more volumes to complete my collection. There was also a memoir and a children’s book for Nate (which looks  new) and the rest are fiction books of authors that I haven’t read yet.  Josef  told me yesterday to go back there and we would bring the car so I don’t have to commute but he has to buy a replacement for our submersible pump for our small pond.  I am comforted by the thought that the sale would end on August 31 so I still have plenty of time to buy books. Did I tell you that I only spent P120 pesos for those twelve books?  Each one costs P10 pesos,  easier on the pocket, I must say. My book shelves are close to  bursting.

Today is the Feast Day of St. Dominic. Happy Feast Day to all  of my Dominican friends.  Fr. Lovell, O.P. (my adopted son)  texted and said that he is praying  for and offering his masses for the family.  I told him it is a noble gift to be prayed for always. What a blessing! I am sad though to learn that the former Rector of UST, Rev. Leonardo Z. Legaspi, O.P.  passed on this morning . He  was the first Filipino UST Rector.  He was a part of my high school and college life in the 70’s.   He died on the feast day of St. Dominic and on his  episcopate ordination anniversary, two special events that would make  it easy for his friends and family to remember. He would always say “Good morning” every time he meets students at the UST campus.  Requiescat  in pace. I’ll remember you in  prayers.

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Just watched the heart-stopping game  of the UST Growling  Tigers versus the NU Bulldogs.  And coach Pido Jarencho cried when his boys won over NU. Did you know that the only basketball game  I watch on TV is the UAAP?  The  University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) was established in 1938, hence this is their 76th season.  The last time UST won in the men’s basketball was in 2006, I think.   This season though, they defeated  NU Bulldogs  twice to become the first number four ranked team to reach the finals.  UST gets a crack at the crown when it faces DLSU  in the best-of-three series starting October 1.

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It would be interesting to watch two brothers, Jeric Teng from UST and  Jeron Teng from DLSU in the  face-off for the championship round.  There is never a question of the three of us (my son, daughter and I) whom to cheer for because we are all Thomasians,  a win for UST is a win for the three of us. And I’m keeping my fingers crossed  UST will bring home the crown.

Go USTe! Growl :)

(photo courtesy of  UST Quadri)

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UST  just won over NU in the final four early this afternoon ensuring them an entry to the finals in the 75th season.

Much as I like Ateneo to win in the finals, I would rather see my alma mater hug the limelight again. It’s been six long years since they got the crown in men’s basketball. This is surely the game to watch…..a match between Ateneo and UST next.

GO USTe….go USTe..go…go…go!  Let’s keep our fingers crossed guys, UST will win! Growl!

(thanks to UST Quadri  and UST Salinggawi Dance Troupe for the attached photos)

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Getting a little nostalgic seeing the pics I took of UST  a few years ago. I spent my high school and college life here. And this central lane leads to the lovely main building of the university.

Bringing back the clock – remembering old friends who were part of  my growing-up years, the heartaches of first love, cramming for exams, early morning student mass at the UST Chapel, the daily walks inside the campus, banana que at P. Noval, cornik laced with chili oil at Dapitan.

I just love taking photos of every corner of UST. This Arch of the Centuries is the “ruin” of the original structure of UST founded more than 400 years ago.

Well…I am just proud to be a Thomasian!

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At first, I didn’t actually like these shots but on second look, they have a redeeming feature, my favorite subject – clouds. And the sun showing its face in the shadows of the Arch of the Centuries of my alma mater, the University of Santo Tomas!

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Two months ago, I had another opportunity to take shots of  one  of my favorite subjects, my alma mater, the University of Santo Tomas, officially known as the Pontifical and Royal University of Santo Tomas, the Catholic University of the Philippines. UST or USTe as we alumni fondly call it is the oldest existing  university  in Asia. In terms of student population, it is the largest Catholic university in the world in a single campus. The institution was established through the initiative of Bishop Miguel de Benavides, O.P., the third Archbishop of Manila. I blogged about it  more than any other subject  I encountered. You see, I am a proud alumna of the University spending nine years of my life since high school in this revered institution.

The UST Main Building with its massive, imposing and seemingly solid facade is one of the best city landmarks in Metro Manila. Designed by Fr. Roque Ruaño, O.P., priest and engineer, it has the distinction of the first fire-proof building in the country. The building is composed of forty independent structures separated from each other by a gap of one inch, which is filled with loose cement. One of these structures rises beyond the level of the fourth floor to form the tower in the center of the huge box-like stone mass.

Back in high school, I was never curious what the statues and monuments atop the main building stand for. Being a student who saw them everyday, they were  just part of the campus and the lovely facade of the building. It’s when you have left its portals that you get to appreciate it better and you’re proud, so truly proud that after all these years, you are still welcome in its bosom.

The  trio of statues represent  theologians and historians: St. Augustine, the Doctor of the Church, St. Raymond de Peñafort, O.P., doctor of Canon Law, and Vincent de Beauvais, O.P. French historian. And the three statues facing A.H.Lacson St. are those of the playwrights: the Spanish Lope de Vega, the Greek comic Aristophanes, and the French neo-classical comedian Moliere .

The wide campus in front of the UST Main Building.

The cross atop the tower symbolizes the University’s mission to impart knowledge in the sacred and civil sciences. Slightly in front of, and below the tower is the “Tria Haec” clustered around a giant clock in the center facade of the fourth floor. The hooded and robed figure “Faith” brandishes a cross up high and occupies the top of the clock. Lower and to the left of the clock stands “Hope” and to the right, “Charity”. All these statues communicate with their varied expressive poses magnified in stone. They teach in silence.

These three figures represent  the great philosophers Aristotle, St. Albert the Great and Plato.

This is  the inner quadrangle of the Main building. The surrounding rooms here used to be the UST Main Library (back in my time, that is).

I walked these halls countless times during my student days and working for almost three years as a student librarian instilled in me the love of books.  Those were the days and I really miss you, USTe!

Hmm…just want to remember, this is my 855th post, thanks WordPress!

Goal of 855 Posts Completed. Congratulations!

100%

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Congratulations to my dearest Alma Mater, University of Santo Tomas for the 14th straight overall championship. Afterall, UAAP is not all basketball. Go USTe, you deserve a big round of applause.

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Do you remember your own high school and college days? Those days of new discoveries – having your first crush, falling in love (or you thought you did), meeting lots of friends, having a crush on one of your professors, aspiring to be a poet (because you want to remember everything  about your first love)  – you name it, perhaps those days are a little obscured now but they are not forgotten.  They simply fade in one’s memory and when you think of them, you smile and reminisce.

I remember the days when my classmates and I used to squat on these  same fields  while eating mani and kornik  laced with chili oil. Back in our time, this  cobbled walk way was simply cemented  and the century old trees had concrete benches underneath.

Ah, the familiar landmark and statue of Fr. Miguel de Benavidez,  OP the founder of the University. It’s the first thing that will greet you on your way to the UST Main building.  This bronze statue “rises on top of a granite pedestal flanked by four lions each bearing the coats-of-arms of the Philippines, Spain, Holy See, and the Dominican Order. He dons the rugged habit of the pioneer Dominican missionaries. His right hand is elevated in the preaching fashion, his index finger pointing to heavens. His left hand rests on his chest holding a book bearing the words Santo Evangélico on its cover. A skull-cap covers his head, and a pectoral cross hangs from his neck, the symbols of Episcopal dignity.”

I miss this place. I spent nine years of my life here, from the tender young age of 12 to a young lady of 21 when I left its doors.

And every chance I get, I take pictures of the place,  remembering those days – campus life – it seems so long ago but it is still achingly familiar.

The Pontifical and Royal University of Santo Tomas, The Catholic University of the Philippines, in short, we, alumni and students alike, fondly call it it USTe.

Today, we are celebrating the Feast Day of St. Thomas Aquinas, the Patron Saint of UST. The university was named after him. And it’s the beginning of the neo-centennial year of UST.

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It’s been years, close to four decades in fact since I last visited the UST Museum. There was a time , when I was still a student, when I used to spend hours just looking at the  vast collections of the museum but there were a lot more added through the years and the place has been renovated. I could spend a whole day just looking at everything here but since I was meeting a friend at the  UST Priory, I just took a few shots of the place. Imagine yourself visiting the oldest existing museum in the Philippines and all you could utter are oohs and aahs just absorbing and thinking how UST has collected and saved all these and we’re talking of more than 300 years.

This is the grand staircase of  the UST Main building where the museum is housed. Notice the murals hanging on the walls, they are creations of Filipino masters Galo Ocampo and Carlos “Botong” Francisco.

The Natural History Collection

Shelter Collection – Ethnography

Clothing Collection – Ethnography

Hunting, Fishing Collection – Ethnography

Metal Craft

The Papal chair used by Blessed  JP II during the 1995 World Youth Day in Manila.

Coins, Medals and Memorabilia – Natural History Collection

This year UST will have its Neo Centennial Celebration and the UST Museum will open its doors to an exhibit dubbed as 400 Shots To Immortality” which will run from January 20 to February 10, 2012.

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A few months ago, I blogged about a favorite comfort food – ice cream!  I was on  my way to meet a friend at the University of Santo Tomas this morning when I chanced upon Mang Fidel, UST’s   ice cream vendor since I can remember. Some students were lining up to buy, what else, ice cream in cone. I signalled  one shot and he graciously took a pose. The students clapped and I was rewarded with a smile. Mang Fidel is definitely growing old with the university. And I say, student days would not be complete somehow without Mang Fidel with his ice cream cart.

And eating ice cream is more fun in the Philippines, right?

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