Distinctions were conferred in honor of student achievers from the University of Santo Tomas at the 2019 Student Awards Day held on May 17, 2019, at the UST Quadricentennial Pavilion Arena.
In his welcome remarks, UST Rector Very Rev. Fr. Herminio V. Dagohoy, O.P., PhD congratulated the student achievers, saying that, “Excellence is not an act, but a habit… You have achieved a level of competence that only few can achieve, because you have devoted your time, energy, and talent to accomplish your goals. You have prevailed over the tempting desire to settle for less and are dauntless in your quest for something you consider worth undertaking… You have endured and your perseverance has paid off.”
Learning to Lead
Engr. Rolando “Don” J. Paulino, Jr., Managing Director and General Manager of Shell Philippines Exploration BV, Upstream Operated, Shell Upstream International, delivered the inspirational address.
Paulino advised Thomasian students that, “The things that you learn cannot stay in your notebooks, laptops, and phones. As leaders, we all need to know how we can leverage our God-given talents, so we can know how to nurture it, and freely share it with others.”
Also emphasized in Paulino’s speech was, “[By keeping the core values of] competence, humility, and integrity, leadership is not about personal glory, but about making others successful.”
To conclude his speech, Paulino left the students with a challenge: “Our talents are not for us; they are meant to be shared for the good of others. Let the recognitions, the medals, plaques you receive today not remain as something you put on the wall, but instead use it as a reminder to be of service, and to act. Thomasian leaders are action-oriented: we make things happen.”
Paulino received his Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering degree from the Faculty of Engineering of the University of Santo Tomas in 1994, cum Laude, and his Master in Business Administration (Leadership and Change) from the Ateneo Graduate School of Business-Regis University in 2004. He also completed the Shell Group Business Leadership Programme, INSEAD in Fontainebleau, France in 2009. He has over two decades of international senior leadership experience in the oil and gas industry.
Each of the top academic achievers from the 18 Faculties, Colleges, and Institutes received the Rector’s Academic Award, conferred by the Father Rector Very Rev. Fr. Herminio V. Dagohoy, O.P. Seminarian John Alfred F. Rabena from the Faculty of Philosophy emerged as the valedictorian of Batch 2019, with a general weighted average of 1.126.
Sixteen exemplary officers of recognized organizations received the Quezon Leadership Award for their service, including Carl Lexter Tan from the Faculty of Medicine and Surgery for spearheading the first National Medical Student’s Conference.
Another award, the Pope Leo XIII Community Development Award, was given to six students and 15 organizations for their outstanding involvement in community development. Among the individual recipients was Kaye Angeline Jimenez from the College of Science for being the project head of “Alaga: A Seminar and Workshop on Mental Health for Sitio Galileo.”
The St. Dominic de Guzman Award was given to ten organizations that held activities of significance to the entire University, among them, the Becarios de Santo Tomas that was cited particularly for their organized tutorial program called ‘Bestutor 2018’ where they offer tutorial assistance primarily to UST athletes, although the program was also open to other UST students who were in need of free tutorial services.
Ten individuals and eight groups received the St. Albertus Magnus Award for excelling in research. Among them were Angela Nicole Morabe, Rhoan Irish Dimakiling, and Lovella Kate Sabile of the Faculty of Engineering for winning the Excellent Paper award during the 7th Joint Conference on Renewable Energy and Nanotechnology in Japan. Their winning paper was on the “Conversion of Citronella Oil to Carbon Nanotubes using Co-Pyrolysis with Ferrocene.”
The Benavides Outstanding Achievement Award is given to students who have academic or scientific accomplishments of national or international significance. It was granted to 17 individuals and 17 groups, including Ean Dominique Castro from the Faculty of Arts and Letters for having been a delegate of the Harvard Project for Asian and International Relations.
For students who excelled in sports and the arts, the Pope John Paul II Outstanding Achievement Award was given. UAAP Season 81 Women’s Volleyball MVP Cherry Ann “Sisi” Q. Rondina was among the recipients of this award.
The Tradition of Excellence Award is given to student organizations that have shown sustained exemplary performance by having received the same award for five consecutive years. The Becarios de Santo Tomas was the lone recipient of this award, for consistently receiving the St. Dominic de Guzman Award from 2015 to 2019.