AS THE decade comes to a close and a new decade begins, the Varsitarian looks back at the most popular stories of the past 10 years.


Pope Francis visited the University in 2015. The Varsitarian released an award-winning special magazine to commemorate the event.

It was also the year Pia Wurtzbach was crowned Miss Universe, Pacquiao-Mayweather was set and Growling Tigers Kevin Ferrer, Ed Daquioag and Karim Abdul graduated from the roster following their runner-up finish to Far Eastern University.

The top stories:

  1. Alumni office launches new website

THE OFFICE of Alumni Relations has revamped its website to help strengthen ties with Thomasians in the Philippines and abroad.

Aside from news and announcements, the new website features stories, audiovisual presentations and documentary films submitted by Thomasian alumni. Alumni may also donate to various projects facilitated by the University.

  1. Pananaliksik gamit ang wikang Filipino, isinulong

UPANG tumaas ang tingin ng mga mag-aaral sa wikang pambansa, dapat gamitin ang Filipino sa pananaliksik-panlipunan, ayon sa mga guro sa isang talakayan sa Pamantasang De La Salle noong ika-27 ng Nobyembre 2015.

Ani Prop. Crizel Sicat-de Laza ng UST, dapat ituro bilang “core course” sa senior high school ang pananaliksik sa Filipino. Sa ganitong paraan, kukunin ng mga mag-aaral ang asignaturang FIlipino anuman ang “academic strand” na kanilang piliin.

  1. UST changes vision-mission statement

THE UNIVERSITY has revised its vision and mission statement, resolving to become the foremost Catholic university in Asia.

The revised mission statement reads: “The University, in pursuit of truth, guided by reason and illuminated by faith, dedicates herself to the generation, advancement, and transmission of knowledge to form competent and compassionate professionals, committed to the service of the Church, the nation, and the global community.”

The revised vision statement reads: “Faithful to its centuries-old tradition of excellence, the University of Santo Tomas envisions itself as a premier Catholic institution of learning in Asia, committed to the professional and moral formation of her stakeholders for social transformation.”


Rodrigo Duterte won the presidency in 2016. It was also the year the government’s bloody war on drugs began and the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos was surreptitiously buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani.

The first UST Senior High School batch was housed at the Buenaventura Garcia Paredes, O.P. Building as the University began a painful transition to the post-K to 12 educational system.

The top stories:

  1. Pagpapanatili ng Filipino sa kolehiyo, daan para sa pagyabong ng wika

HIGIT na lalalim ang talakayan sa silid-aralan kung ang wikang pambansa ang gagamitin sa pagtuturo ng iba’t ibang asignatura sa mga mag-aaral lalo na ngayong napanatili ang Filipino sa kolehiyo.

Magandang pagbubukas sa Buwan ng Wikang Pambansa ngayong taon ang desisyon ng Commission on Higher Education (CHEd) na ipagpatuloy ang pagtuturo ng asignaturang Filipino sa mga institusiyon para sa mas mataas na edukasiyon.

  1. UST Santa Rosa campus expected to open ahead of GenSan

UST will be able to extend Thomasian education to Santa Rosa, Laguna, the first campus of the University outside Metro Manila, Rector Fr. Herminio Dagohoy, O.P. has bared.

  1. UST set to offer first doctorate program in medical technology in PH

THE UST Graduate School will offer a doctorate program in medical technology next semester, the first doctorate program in medical technology and medical laboratory sciences in the country.

Faculty of Pharmacy Dean Aleth Dacanay said the program would “address the demands of an ever-changing and ever-evolving profession.”


The death of UST Civil Law freshman Horacio “Atio” Castillo III due to hazing rites by law school-based Aegis Juris Fraternity in 2017 sparked a national controversy and put a spotlight on University policies on fraternities and the implementation of the Anti-Hazing Law.

The top stories:

  1. UST to offer first ‘transnational’ architecture doctorate in PH

The University is set to offer the first “transnational” doctorate program in architecture in the country next academic year.

Graduate School Dean Marilu Madrunio said the doctorate program would be offered as a double degree by UST and in the University of Reading in the United Kingdom.

  1.   Med-tech student gets GWA of 1.059, is named valedictorian of Batch 2017

THE VALEDICTORAN of Batch 2017 is a medical technology graduate, who will receive the highest Latin honors from the University for his general weighted average of 1.059.

Neill Steven Cachuela was among the recipients of the Rector’s Academic Award, UST’s highest academic excellence award, during the Students’ Awards Day on May 12 at the Quadricentennial Pavilion.

  1. Dumped on a sidewalk in Tondo: UST law freshman dead after hazing rites

A UST Faculty of Civil Law freshman was found dead Monday morning after suffering injuries during alleged fraternity hazing rites, Civil Law Dean Nilo Divina confirmed to the Varsitarian.

The parents of Horacio Tomas Castillo III, in separate radio and television interviews, said their son had sought permission to join the “welcome” rites for new members of the Aegis Juris Fraternity at UST on Saturday, after week-long initiation activities.

But Castillo, a 22-year-old UST political science graduate, did not go home by lunchtime the following day, Sunday.

READ: The Varsitarian’s top stories of 2017


The Varsitarian celebrated its 90th year in 2018. It was also the year the creative writing program and Sentro ng Salin or center for translation were opened.

The top stories:

  1. Aegis Juris fratmen indicted in Atio hazing death; Divina cleared of charges

Aegis Juris fratmen tagged in the hazing death of UST law freshman Horacio “Atio” Castillo III were kicked out of the University on Feb. 18 after a fact-finding committee found them guilty of violating the Student Code of Conduct and Discipline.

The fratmen voluntarily turned themselves in to the National Bureau of Investigation on March 23, a day after the Manila Regional Trial Court ordered their arrest.

  1. UST kicks out student after new complaint of abuse

COLLEGE of Science student Kyle Viray has been kicked out of the University following another complaint of physical abuse filed by a fellow Thomasian.

LOOK: Letter from abuse victim’s mother sent to the College of Science in April, prior to disciplinary proceedings against biology student Kyle Viray.

Viray was found guilty of violating UST’s Code of Conduct and Discipline, and was “excluded” from the roll of students and “disqualified” from enrolling in any program offered by the University.

  1. Philosophy profs hit ‘outcomes-based education’ in research forum

AN OBSESSION with outcomes is not really centered on students, but instead reduces them to marketable employees.

Faculty members from the UST Department of Philosophy criticized on Feb. 22 the implementation of the outcomes-based education curriculum in the country in a research forum at the Buenaventura G. Paredes, O.P. Building.


The year 2019 caused heartbreaks to UST sports fans, as both the Growling Tigers and Golden Tigresses were beaten by Ateneo in the finals.

The top stories:

1.     Father says legal mgmt freshman ‘missing’ after ‘immersion’

THE FATHER of a UST legal management freshman has come out in the open in an effort to reach his daughter, who went missing in December after a supposed immersion with farmers in Quezon Province.

18-year-old Rizza Camingawan, a legal management freshman at the UST Faculty of Arts and Letters, was reported missing by her father after a supposed immersion last December. (Photo grabbed from Roland Camingawan’s Facebook page)

Roland Camingawan sought help from radio station dzBB on Tuesday claiming his daughter Rizza Divine, 18, went missing after he lost contact with her on Christmas Eve.

  1.     New building welcomes 3,531 SHS students

THE UNIVERSITY officially opened the doors of the new Senior High School (SHS) building to 3,531 Grade 11 students at the start of Academic Year 2019-2020.

The Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati, O.P. Building, named after the patron of the UST Senior High School, stands 22 storeys tall — the highest among UST buildings.


  1. UST scores 100 percent in nursing board exams for 5th straight year

THE UNIVERSITY recorded a 100-percent passing rate in the nursing board exams for the fifth straight year.

NO ONE LEFT BEHIND. All 338 Thomasians who took the November 2019 licensure examinations for nurses passed, stretching the University’s perfect streak to five years. (Photo from College of Nursing Regent Fr. Julius Paul Factora, O.P.)

It also ranked first among top-performing schools for the fifth consecutive year, results of the November 2019 nursing licensure examinations showed. with reports from Laurd Menhard Salen, Charm Ryanne C. Magpali and Camille Abiel H. Torres

PART 1: V looks back at the past decade


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