UST RECTOR Fr. Richard Ang, O.P. urged first-year students to have strength, ferocity and power like a tiger, the University mascot, during the Welcome Mass for freshmen at the Quadricentennial Pavilion on Tuesday.

In his homily, Ang said these traits were necessary to make a student agile and flexible amid all the disruptions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Be like a tiger that has strength, ferocity and power. It is fast and agile, making it invincible […] These traits will provide you with your coping mechanism. They may be considered explicitly as the new core values of UST,” the Rector 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.” The official mascot of UST is the Bengal tiger, which bears the University colors gold, black and white.

Ang also advised freshmen to strive to be dedicated during their stay at the University.

“Do not underestimate the power you have to take your life in a new direction. This is your turning point. Expect changes and more responsibilities in college, as well as a heightened sense of autonomy. And right at the very beginning, it pays to have positive thoughts and positive expectations,” he said.

The Rector said this year’s welcome rites, the first to be held face-to-face since 2019, invigorated the 411-year-old University that had most of its facilities closed from students over the past two years.

“Congratulations to all of you for making it to the list of freshmen students in your respective course programs. I strongly believe that as young blood, you envigorate this 400-year-old institution, making it forever young,” he told freshmen.

Ang also encouraged students to develop resilience through faith-building.

“Thomasians like you, like me, have an indomitable spirit because we believe that God’s grace will overcome the gloom of our darkest night,” he said.

The Welcome Mass was followed by the traditional ROARientation and Welcome Walk, in which first-year students passed through the Arch of the Centuries, symbolizing their entrance to the University.

Another Welcome Mass, ROARientation, and Welcome Walk will be held in the afternoon for another batch of freshmen.

Incoming Grade 7 and 11 students will have their hybrid “ALAB 2022” orientation on Aug. 10.

“Homecoming” rites for Batches 2024 and 2025 will be held on Aug. 23.


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