by Abigail Ramirez
Posted on 2018-11-23 16:54:32
School is a place where one spends most of his/her life with strangers who later turn into family. No matter how much one hated it back then, this place will always have a soft spot in one’s heart and mind as it is where one finds a second home. And what do one do when one misses home? They come back. The Paulinian Alumni did just that last October 27, 2018.
It has long been a tradition for the St. Paul University Dumaguete Alumni Association (SPUDAA) to organize the annual Alumni Homecoming. As the name of the event suggests, it is fitting for the hosts to be alumni of the university as well. This year’s masters of ceremonies were Ms. Jou Grace Vale and Mr. James Anthony Diputado.
Just like in any Paulinian program, the Grand Alumni homecoming started with a prayer led by Mr. Ruben S. Badon followed by the singing of the Philippine National Anthem and the Paulinian hymn. As they sang the hymn, it is as if they were reminiscing their moments back then when they were still students dreaming of graduation. The exchanging of smiles and glistening of eyes attest to this.
SPUDAA President Hon. Jose Victor V. Imbo, DMD welcomed everyone to the grand alumni homecoming. Following thereafter was the prayer before meals led by Fr. Clyde Flores for the fellowship dinner. The hall was filled with voices and laughter, each and every one catching up with one another’s lives. Accompanying this were intermission numbers by SPUD staff Ms. Helian Roferos followed by high school batch ‘83 alumnus Mr. Leo Zita. Special recognitions were given to batches celebrating milestones as alumni of SPUD, namely HS Batch ‘78 (Ruby), HS Batch ‘93 (Silver), HS Batch ‘98 (Pearl), Elementary Batch ‘73 (Sapphire), and Elementary/HS Batch ‘68 (Golden). These people really set the bars on how to ‘keep in touch.’
The Alumni homecoming hit two birds with one stone by not only meeting and catching up with their classmates but also giving back to their beloved alma mater. With each year comes a new set of SPUDAA Officers. The homecoming serves as an avenue for the election of the new Board of Directors. SPUD President Sr. Joseline R. Lasala, SPC addressed the university’s main concern in her message by encouraging the SPUDAA to play a role in solving the decrease in enrollment.
Before the announcement of the newly-elected Board of Directors, the floor was given to the different batches celebrating milestones with SPUD for their group performances. Their costumes were all related to the milestone they’re celebrating. At the end of the presentations, a plaque of recognition was given to the SPC Sisters for their unconditional and never-ending guidance and support to the professionals who once roamed the halls of St. Paul University Dumaguete.
The last segment for the first part of the program was the announcement of the newly-elected Board of Directors. Instead of 10 alumni, only 5 were nominated and automatically elected as Board of Directors, namely Marietta Abella from Elementary batch ‘68, Edwin Nacar from HS batch ‘88, Jose Victor Imbo from batch ‘78, James Ronan Palubio from HS batch ‘93, and Gilda Elli from HS batch ‘78. The election of the new set of officers called for a celebration which brought the homecoming to the second part of the program, the Dancing & Fellowship.
Seeing familiar faces comforts the soul and lightens the heart. The annual Alumni Homecoming brings about just that. The gust of nostalgia will surely hit one hard. But instead of pain, emotions of happiness and joy would rush to one’s spine and into the body upon going back to where it all started, remembering the never-dying slogan, “Once a Paulinian, always a Paulinian.”