By: Alexis Balansag*
On March 27, 2011, Siena College, San Jose del Monte, Bulacan held its 3rdCommencement Exercises for the Night High School Scholarship Program. The graduation stared with a Eucharist Celebration presided by Fr. Rogelio Alarcon, O.P., followed by the Commencement Exercises for the graduating scholars and Recognition Program for the undergraduate Night High scholars.
The Commencement Rites began with welcome remarks given by the Second Honor Awardee, Maicah Jane Calumay. The Candidates for Graduation was presented by School Registrar, Ms. Maria Jeckilyn Sapong, to Sr. Cecilia Espenilla, O.P., President of Siena College, San Jose del Monte, who confirmed the 20 Night High graduates. The confirmation was then followed by the distribution of diplomas and the conferring of awards to outstanding graduating scholars.
Sunshine A. Bondal graduated with First Honors and received awards for Best in TLE, Best in Science, Best in Social Studies, Best in MAPEH, Best in Elective English, Best in Elective Math, and Best in Deportment. Sunshine also received Service Awards as a member of the student council and as a member of the Tinig Siena Music Ministry Choir. Maicah Jane S. Calumay received Second Honors as well as awards for Best in Filipino, Active Library Clientele, and Service Awards as a Student Council member and Tinig Siena Music Ministry member. Engelwaine J. Macorol graduated with Third Honors and was awarded Service Awards as a member of the Student Council and as a member of the Tinig Siena Music Ministry, an award for Perfect Attendance and an award for Active Club Officer in the Math Club. Franz Dale Mazo graduated with Top 4 honors and as a recipient of a Service Award for Student Council, and Joyce Arac graduated with Top 5 honors and received a Service Award as a member of the Tinig Siena Music Ministry, an award for Perfect Attendance and an award for Performing Arts in Dance.
After the diplomas were given and the awards conferred, an Inspirational Message was given to the graduates by Mr. Lewis A. Edwards, Chairman and Founder of A Better Chance Foundation. His message was followed by the words of gratitude from the class First Honor Awardee Sunshine A. Bondal and the Loyalty Pledge led by Third Honor Awardee, Engelwaine J. Macorol.
In addition to the Commencement Ceremony for the 5th year Night High scholars, a Recognition Award was also held for the undergraduate Night High Scholars. Outstanding Night High scholars from 1st to 4th year were recognized for their excellent academic accomplishments throughout S.Y. 2010-2011.
After the short Recognition Program for the other Night High Scholars, the ceremony ended with tears of joy as the graduates sang their Graduation songs, Earth Keeper, Salamat Siena and A Brighter Future Begins at ABC. The Program was officially ended by the Dominican Blessing and the Recessional march of the 20 5th year graduates.
*Alexis Balansag belongs to the Class of 2010 of Siena College, Taytay, Rizal. He is currently a summer intern at A Better Chance Foundation. He will be attending The Polytechnic University of the Philippines as a Mass Communications Major in S.Y. 2011-2012.