Dr. Jose Francisco Benitez temporarily leaves PWU

Guest speaker Samira Gutoc is thanked by Dr. Kiko Benitez (L) and Acting PWU President Marco Benitez (R) during PWU’s 96th Commencement Ceremonies at PICC

PWU Centennial Graduates

Posted: August 6, 2019

The Class of 2019 will be remembered as the Centennial year graduates of the Philippine Women’s University. The Baccalaureate Ceremonies held on July 26 at the Taft Avenue campus and the Commencement that followed on July 27, 2019 at PICC were made doubly significant because the events also marked the turn-over by Dr. Francisco B. Benitez who has served as PWU’s president since 2011 to Mr. Marco Alfredo M. Benitez, the new Acting President of the university founded by their great-grandparents in 1919. Dr. Benitez, who was the ninth president of PWU, is the newly elected Representative of the Third District of Negros Occidental.

PWU alumna Pacita “Chit” Juan, the Baccalaureate guest speaker, reminded the graduates that they are first and foremost Filipinos, so although they may dream of working abroad they will only ever be second-class citizens there so they should think twice about leaving.

Samira Gutoc, the Commencement speaker said she was inspired by the example of her mother who was a Philwomenian – to work for the good of the family, the community and the underprivileged. She urged the graduates to thank their parents for providing them with a good education in an institution whose initials she re-interpreted as P-alaban, W-alang U-rungan.

Speaking on behalf of the students, this year’s valedictorian Thomas Andrew Pescador (School of Music, Magna Cum Laude) disclosed that he was not always such a good student but how that all changed when he found his passion in Music. Rizza Denise B. Del Rosario (BSBA major in Entrepreneurial Management) delivered the Salutatorian’s Address at PICC and Rosalie M. Blanco (BS Information Technology, Cum Laude) gave the Salute to Alma Mater during the Baccalaureate Ceremonies.

The new graduates were inducted into the PWU Alumni Association by Atty. Rosario Calixto Chavez. The 2019 Bacaclaureate Committee was headed by Dr. Nancy Felipe and emceed by Mr. Mikael Dimitri B. Gentica, a faculty member of the School of Arts and Sciences. PWU chaplain Fr. Macias Wency Serafica and Fr. Engelbert Samonte, who is a member of the Class of 2019 (PhD in Educational Management) concelebrated the Baccalaureate Mass. The Commencement Committee was chaired by Mr. Mark Harvey B. Adamson (Program Chair of the School of Pharmacy) who also hosted the Program at PICC. Popular singer/songwriter Jason Dy (The Voice second season winner) sang the Invocation to the delight of the audience at PICC where he later received his diploma for Bachelor of Music, major in Popular Music with PWU’s proud Centennial class of 2019.

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