(Photo by Arianne Maye D.G. Viri/ The Varsitarian)

Say your goodbyes.

The tiger statue and UST block letters at the Plaza Mayor will be removed in the last week of July, the Facilities Management Office (FMO) said.

The old structures will be removed to give way for overhauled ones, which will be unveiled in an “unboxing” event at 6 p.m. on Aug. 9, after the welcome activities for college freshmen.

FMO Director Fr. Dexter Austria, O.P. told the Varsitarian that the new structures would be mounted at Plaza Mayor, enclosed in a box, in the first week of August, prior to their Aug. 9 reveal.

The new tiger, designed by former UST College of Fine Arts and Design faculty member Anthony Zamora, will finish construction within this month, Austria said.

“Suffice to say that the tiger is not merely a makeover but an overhaul. A dynamic and powerful statue of a tiger that we could all be proud of, students and alumni alike,” Austria said.

“We are now preparing for its grand unveiling. Pati ako namangha sa ganda at laki nung tigre,” he added.

Austria earlier told the Varsitarian that the new Plaza Mayor edifices would be erected to “inaugurate a new era after the Covid-19 pandemic.”

The same structures will be erected in UST General Santos (GenSan) and UST Santa Rosa.

“[The redesigned structures also aim] to signal UST’s aggressive expansion to Sta. Rosa and General Santos. You will see that symbolic dynamism in the block letters and tiger statue,” Austria said.

The University has been associated with the tiger mascot since 1992 when its varsity team moniker transitioned from “Glowing Goldies” to the “Growling Tigers,” thanks to the “Mommy Tiger,” former Institute of Physical Education and Athletics assistant director Felicitas Francisco.

The official mascot of UST is the Bengal tiger, which bears the University colors gold, black and white.


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