FATHER Herminio Dagohoy, O.P. was invested to a second four-year term as UST Rector last Aug. 2, vowing to make Thomasian education “responsive to the 21st century.”

In his speech during his Solemn Investiture at the Santisimo Rosario Parish Church, the University’s 96th Rector said sacrifices should be made for Thomasians to receive timely and innovative education rooted in Catholic teachings.

“I know that we will be able to transcend our personal or sectorial interests and seek the good of all. In seeking the common good, we reaffirm the significant influence of the communal dimension of Catholic schooling that makes Catholic universities different from others,” Fr. Dagohoy said.

“I’d like Thomasian education to welcome and be responsive to the 21st century. I ask for your generosity as these challenges require sacrifices,” he told administrators, faculty members, support staff and students.

Fr. Dagohoy revealed that upon learning of his reelection, he “protested” to the Lord in prayer, given the demands of the Office of the Rector.

“He should have the stamina of a boxer, protect and serve the academic community like a policeman. He should understand and be able to read people’s emotions like a psychologist. He must be innovative, and with superior intelligence, seek for its (University) development. With all these descriptions and expectations, who would want to be a University president?” he said.

But the enduring Church served as a reminder to him to make “extreme sacrifices.”

“I accept the responsibilities entrusted to me and I pray that you and me may act justly, love mercifully, and together, we may work humbly with our heart,” he said.

Simple rites

The veteran University administrator requested simple investiture rites, “in keeping with the times.”

The ceremony for Fr. Dagohoy’s investiture followed the Misa de Apertura, which marked the opening of Academic Year 2016-2017.

Secretary General Fr. Winston Cabading, O.P. read the appointment decree from the Vatican’s Sacred Congregation for Catholic Education and Seminaries.

This was followed by Fr. Dagohoy’s profession of faith and oath of fidelity, in which he vowed to uphold Catholic teachings as head of the Pontifical University.

Vice Rector for Religious Affairs Fr. Filemon dela Cruz, O.P. and Vice Rector for Academic Affairs Clarita Carillo assisted Fr. Dagohoy in wearing the Rector’s Collar, which symbolizes the Rector’s dignity in office, the powers of the Holy See and the Philippine government, and the supreme teaching authority of the University.

University Vice Rector Fr. Richard Ang, O.P. and Vice Rector for Research and Innovation Maribel Nonato handed two ceremonial maces to Fr. Dagohoy. The maces symbolize the temporal academic order and spiritual order the Rector has to manifest in his office.

Fr. Dagohoy’s first term was marked by big-ticket building projects, efforts to boost the University’s international profile, and a fourth papal visit in 2015.

His reappointment came after he topped the April 25 election by the Dominican community in UST, which was affirmed by the Academic Senate and the Board of Trustees.

Before he became Rector in 2012, Fr. Dagohoy was internal auditor and director of finance and administration at UST Hospital.

Fr. Dagohoy heads the Association of Southeast and East Asian Catholic Colleges and Universities and is a member of the Scientific Council of the French Biblical and Archaeological School of Jerusalem.

Traditionally, UST rectors have been re-elected to a second term, such as Fr. Norberto Castillo, O.P. (1982-1986 and 1986-1990), Fr. Rolando de la Rosa, O.P. (1990-1994 and 1994-1998) and Fr. Tamerlane Lana, O.P. (1998-2002 and 2002-2006). Christian de Lano M. Deiparine and Roy Abrahmn D.R. Narra with reports from Mia Arra C. Camacho


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