Last May 24, 2018 (Thursday), the University of Santo Tomas held the annual Baccalaureate Celebration as a sendoff to 8,794 graduating degree students from the different faculties, colleges, institutes, and schools.
It was grace that made you the best wine
In his homily, UST Rector Fr. Herminio V. Dagohoy, O.P., PhD reflected on the Gospel about the Wedding Feast at Cana. Fr. Dagohoy recognized the times when, like the Wedding Feast at Cana, the learners exerted their best effort, but these were “never enough.” He heaped praises on them for he said, “from the timid-looking boys and girls four or five years ago, you have smart-looking gentlemen and confidently beautiful women who are now better individuals.”
The Rector used the words “Sa Wakas” (at last) in order to characterize the euphoria felt by the community at the conclusion of the students’ academic journey. “Every ending has happiness in it,” Fr. Dagohoy said, asking the batch if they were indeed happy. He reminded them that in the absence of happiness, an end is not yet in sight.
Fr. Dagohoy reminded the learners that their success, however, was not of their own making only. “Your success is not just about you. Sometimes, in pursuing our ambition and goal, we tend to emphasize the primacy of self. “My dear Thomasians, do not prioritize personal ambition over genuine service, and self-referential interest over the common good.”
The ceremony, apart from having the Mass, also included timeless UST traditions, such as the imposition of the Thomasian cross, which graduating students gave one another. The ceremony of light, in which the Rector spread the candlelight to all the students through their respective Deans / Directors and Regents, illuminated the otherwise dark field, as the students sang the University Hymn one last time.
Photo credit: Mr. Vince Tanching