FOR THE first time in the history of the Student Awards, two graduating students received the highest and most prestigious award the University could give its students.

Sem. Noel Vincent Abalajon, Jr., a candidate for magna cum laude of the Faculty of Philosophy, and law student Arlene Maneja, a candidate for cum laude, were vested the Aquinas Award last Feb. 20 at the Albertus Magnus Auditorium.

The Aquinas Award is given to graduating students who have received all three individual awards, namely the Rector’s Academic Award, the Quezon Leadership Award, and the Benavides Achievement Award during.

Abalajon received all three awards this year, while Maneja got two—the Rector’s Academic Award and the Quezon Leadership Award. She received her Benavides Achievement Award last year.

Guest speaker Commission on Elections Chairman Alfredo Benipayo urged the honorees to use their talents to serve their country, their countrymen, and God.

“Use your distinction as a springboard for further success and not as a cushion upon which you can lie arrogant and indolent. (Rather, you should) lead by example and help your fellow students to reach the same plateau of success,” Benipayo added.

Last year, there was no recipient of the Aquinas Award and prior to last year, only two students had received the much-coveted award since 1995.

Aside from Abalajon and Maneja, the other Rector’s Academic Award winners were Sem. Robert Young (Faculty of Sacred Theology) whose general weighted average of 1.18 is the highest, Candice Marie Custodio (Faculty of Medicine and Surgery), Chandy Lou Malong (Faculty of Pharmacy), Joan Padilla (Arts and Letters), Francis Castro (Engineering), Jared Christian Ramos (Education), John Paul Lorredo (Science), Heidi Lynn Bravo (Commerce), Carlo Chinolli Syquio Joson (Architecture), Evalour Galia (Nursing), Ann Abarientos (Music), Dominador Ayeras III (Rehabilitation Sciences), Herbert Hernandez (Fine Arts and Design), and Rodrigo Zafra (USTHigh School).

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The Rector’s Academic Award is given to graduating students who have garnered the highest weighted average in their respective faculties of colleges.

The other Quezon Leadership Award recipients were Sem. John Jacome (Sacred Theology), Claire Bautista (Medicine and Surgery), Karlorico Feliciano (Pharmacy), Maria Angelica Relucio (Arts and Letters), Ivan Christopher Lanuza (Engineering), Paul Lovell Javier (Commerce), Mona Lizelle Lim (Architecture), Earl Francis Sumile (Nursing), Kristine Dionne Cañedo (Music), Argentina Luz Tabac (Rehabilitation Sciences), Hernandez (Fine Arts and Design), Catherine Airis Pastoral (USTHigh School) and Harry Uy (Office for Student Affairs).

The Quezon Award is given to students who have led and organized activities that have contributed to the welfare of students.

Meanwhile, the other Benavides Achievement Award honorees were Jacome (Sacred Theology), Arnel Ordas (Civil Law), Relucio (Arts and Letters), Germaine Lisa Ang (Engineering), Denise Constantino (Education), Januel Magtibay (Music), Randell Suba (Rehabilitation Sciences), Giorgio Von Gerri de Guzman (USTHigh School).

The Benavides Award, on the other hand, is given for outstanding performance in contests and conferences, or involvement in community services.

Furthermore, 18 organizations, including the Varsitarian, received the Pope Leo XIII Communitarian Award.

Meanwhile, the Community Service Volunteers (Comserv) received a Special Citation Award for its social outreach programs. Teodoro Lorenzo A. Fernandez

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