LAST year, Rector Fr. Rolando de la Rosa, O.P. emphasized in his annual report that UST and its achievements are its birthright and destiny. There is no doubt that one does not become a Thomasian by accident. The fact that the University has been around for four centuries is a testimony that it has already pervaded public consciousness. The thousands of hopefuls who took the UST entrance test (Ustet) are proof that the University has made a lasting impact in education and in nation-building.

I hope I don’t sound presumptuous if I say that there is always something innately “Thomasian” in every one of us, since UST has been true to its mission since 1611 to provide quality education to Filipinos, many of whom become leaders, trailblazers, innovators, movers and shakers here and abroad. This is the legacy of the Pontifical University.

As director of the Office for Admissions, it is important to note that being accepted in the University is the first step to experiencing genuine Thomasian education.

One must first apply, take the entrance examination, pass it, and be able to comply with other requirements of a degree program. It is a process that all applicants must go through. Once an applicant makes it, it is now his responsibility to do well in his studies up to the time that he is supposed to graduate.

Rumor has it that it is rather easy to pass the entrance examination; I would like to contest this. While we wish to accommodate everyone, there are still thousands of applicants who, unfortunately, do not pass the Ustet. Academic standards have to be maintained, which is why we constantly review the entrance examination. The many applicants every year show that people trust UST as an educational institution and it is one of the top priorities of parents for their children’s education.

Orlina's 'Brilliance' shines through

UST is an institution that does not only emphasize academic excellence, because many other equally good schools do the same. It also strives to instill virtues and values in all students. Theology courses and a sufficient number of Humanities and Social courses are offered in all degree programs to make the Thomasian experience more holistic.

There is nothing wrong with wanting to get ahead or with wanting to be on top. In fact, the University encourages this. Proof of this is our outstanding performance in licensure examinations.

But more important than academic achievement is the fact that our students aim to achieve something with a conscience; that they do not develop intellectual hubris, and for them to realize that learning is the ultimate prize and that it has a nobler purpose than mere statistical accomplishments.

Many companies say that they prioritize UST graduates during hiring season because they are not only competent, but are also eager to learn more. They are also respectful and determined, while keeping their values intact.

The University is, first and foremost, not an elitist school. Its clientele is so diverse, with students coming from different social and economic backgrounds, providing the University with more opportunities to bring out the best in them. A few years ago, a University representative was interviewed on television and he said that UST accepts basically average students and make them excellent individuals.

This is more challenging than having a clientele that is composed of a “charmed circle,” whose members come only from the upper echelon of society. Thus, this makes the Thomasian experience more genuine, more realistic, more sincere, and more human and humane.

When the 'Great Flood' came to UST


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.