John Ryan Padlan
Photo by Alfonso Tamondong
With numerous activities, colorful festivities, and entertaining programs that are surely one for the books, the Colegio opened yet another grandiose Quadricentennial Celebration as it enters its second phase titled “Tantos Hombres y Mujeres Ilustres Formar (Forming Many Illustrious Men and Women)” last November 24-29.
If last year’s celebration was focused on the past having a theme titled, “Orgullosos de ti y de tu historia” (Proud of you and your history), this year was all about what the Colegio has in the present.
“The Quadricentennial Year One Celebration was actually more on history. We gave highlights and importance on our alumni and saints, and their contributions to Letran and to the society,” Asst. Prof. Jhennie Villar, Directress of the Office of Alumni and Public Affairs and Over-all Chair of the Celebration, said, explaining the themes of each celebration.
She then added that Year Two Celebration was planned to highlight what is in the present.
“It’s more on tayo as an institution, sharing what we have right now. Sharing the blessings that we have to our partnered communities, students, alumni etc.,” she said.
As part of the celebration, the Colegio granted more scholarships and conducted community service activities in which the directress stressed, “all the collected funds will be given back to the communities.”
Villar also revealed that the celebration next year will focus on what lies ahead in the future, while the following year will be the grandest of all celebrations. “We started small hanggang palaki siya nang palaki and we are implementing always new things every year, leading to the year 2020,” she ended.
So much hard work and effort were given by the Colegio’s committee to successfully execute the most awaited celebration as an opener to the new semester. And it was proven by the positive and appreciative feedbacks from the Letranites who have posted their moments, experiences, and reactions on their social media accounts.
The Letran Student Council (LSC) was one of the committees who took a big part in implementing new activities, and, at the same time, administering the success of the event for the fulfillment of the students.
Preparation and arrangement had to be done as the pressure to deliver a memorable event was on the Council.
"All of the events of the student council this Quadri Week came from our operational plan. Noong nag-plan kami ng summer, nag-isip kami ng activity na students will find it new and fresh," Renzo Sabanal, LSC President, shared. "At dahil wala tayong first year students, natakot kami na baka isipin nila na paulit-ulit lang ang activities.”
However, Sabanal and the rest of the Council made sure that they prepared programs and activities that are worth experiencing for.
Though the fear of disappointing the Letranites was on them, the Council, however, left a memorable experience for the students to recall and talk about.
"We did not expect that the Letran Community would love the idea of our activities," the president highlighted.
Asked on what he can say to the Letranites who supported their activities on the Year Two Celebration, the 4th year student leader said, “Thank you for the support to us. We will make sure that the raised funds will go to something bigger and sustainable."
In observance of the feast day of St. Vincent Liem dela Paz, the celebration began with an institutional mass led by Rev. Fr. Clarence Marquez, O.P. at the Manila Cathedral, followed by a parade and street dance competition at the Plaza Roma, displaying the Philippine festival culture.
Then, Letran brought the community into an amusement by opening booths selling pre-loved items and food, presenting exhibits, and installing fun rides while students gather in the newly-launched Open Mic event.
To intensify the overflowing excitement in the hardcourt, alumni, employees and former and current Knights all had fun in the three basketball exhibition games at Blessed Antonio Varona gym.
As part of the commemoration of Colegio’s patron saint, Teatro de Letran, along with the Letran Filipiniana Dance Company and the Letran Singing Ambassadors, presented a play titled “LOL: Liem, Oh my Liem!" held at SC Auditorium.
On the second day, the fun continued by opening the 4-day bazaar (Knights Market) at the gym. The Community Service Day (Linggap Arriba Day) and Graduate School Alumni Homecoming followed afterward.
Meanwhile, Letranites willingly participated in the University Challenge and the Dominican Quiz Bee. They also had thrilled experience entering the Scare Fair called “Mysquery”.
Students, as well as the faculty members and employees, then flocked to Salon de Actos to play the Bingo Socials, with a grand cash prize worth P30,000 waiting.
With much passion for dancing, Letranites also showcased their talent in a dance concert called “Triduum”, with a special participation from the other school branches of Letran.
The day followed became more exciting as they started the Scavenger’s hunt around Intramuros, Palaro ng Lahi, Sayawit and the blockbuster Open Cinema at St. Thomas grounds. On the same day, young Letranites unveiled their amazing talents and charming personality at the Little Mr. and Ms. Letran at SC Auditorium.
Surprisingly, the celebration was star-studded as Rocco Nacino, the second prince of Starstruck, joined the Letranites in Open Cinema, while, an OPM singer-songwriter Moira dela Torre and an alternative/indie band, December Avenue was also present to serenade the crowd.
The whole Letran community was in rapture until the all-hits FM radio station, Wish 107.5 unexpectedly arrived at the Colegio, presenting also an OPM singer, Bryan Termulo, who performed live inside its famous bus.
As the ceremony closed, millennials of Letran had a blast participating the RUN HUEknighted: A Color Fun Run for a cause then gathered right after to Letran grounds for the most important highlight of the event, the Arriba Fest.
Attended by various popular DJ’s, the Arriba Fest threw a vibrant party into the crowd and ended the year 2 celebration with a fireworks display.