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July 15, 2010

UAP Diliman at 31: Bound As One

Contributed by Arch. Rex Tamase, BS Architecture

The United Architects of the Philippines Diliman Chapter celebrated its thirty-first founding anniversary with an Anniversary Ball and Induction of Officers and New Members held on July 15, 2010 at the Wack Wack Golf and Country Club.

Departing from the ordinary, the night had three guest speakers, each one representing a generation of UAP Diliman members.

In introducing the speakers, Arch. Noel Litonjua, fuap, said that for more than 30 years, the Chapter has been “ably guided by the strong leadership of the chapter presidents” and that they “are still supporting the chapter as members of the Council of Elders or have taken esteemed positions in regional, national and international organizations and various academic institutions.” He added that “the strength of the organization does not rest solely on the officers. The organization’s true strength hails from its committed and active membership who has ably supported the many initiatives of the chapter” and that “despite our various interests, fields of expertise, age bracket, we are one in spirit and in calling.”

Arch. Prosperidad C.Luis, fuap, spoke on behalf of the first generation of members and recalled the struggles faced by the chapter in encouraging the members to attend and participate in the activities. She remembered that some 50 members were confirmed to attend the chapter's first induction, but only a handful actually showed up. She was thankful, though, that the chapter survived those early years.

Arch. Cathy Saldaña represented the batch that revitalized the chapter. She reminisced that it was during the term of Arch. Armin Sarthou, fuap won its first of five consecutive Best Chapter Awards. She was then the chapter’s vice president and, together with other members, came up with CPE seminars which had the likes of former PIA president Arch. Roger Villarosa as resource speakers.

Arch. Nap Ibañez represented the young and future generation of members. He said that being the “future” of the chapter doesn’t have to mean to “take over” the chapter. Rather, he said that the younger set should collaborate with the older chapter members.

In his valedictory address, former chapter President Arch. Flori Sebastian laughed at the fact that rains “attended” several activities during his term, beginning with his induction in July 2009 and ending with the last GMM in June 2010. A CPE seminar was canceled due to typhoon Ondoy, and it also rained during the family day held in the summer month of May. Quoting the character of American President Beck, portrayed by Morgan Freeman in the movie Deep Impact (“The waters reached as far inland as the Ohio and Tennessee Valleys. It washed away farms and towns, forests and skyscrapers. But, the water receded. The wave hit Europe and Africa too. Millions were lost, and countless more left homeless. But the waters receded . . . then teach to rejoice in what we have been regiven. Our planet. Our home. Now, let us begin.”) Arch. Sebastian said that the canceled activities were eventually held after “the waters receded.”

Contemplating what he got himself into, chapter vice president for planning Arch. Carlo Bustos said that “my involvement in the UAP is somewhat like what I’ve learned from the sensible evangelist, Bo Sanchez in one of his talks, wherein he mentioned tithing to the Church as our way of physically supporting our place of worship.”

“My involvement in the UAP is somehow my tithing as an Architect. And, instead of donating money, I donate my time and efforts to my “church”, being an architect.”

Chapter president Arch. Mark Luna, in his inaugural address said that “our organization is not a perfect one. Just like a structure that should accommodate extensions and improvement, the Diliman Chapter continues to evolve. Active participation is the key to positive changes. We cannot simply sit, watch, and complain. If you want results, make them happen. You have to play the game to win the game” and encouraged the members to be “active participants of not only our Chapter events, but also of those by the National, Area, and District levels. After all, we, the Architects, are the ones who shall benefit from the seeds that the UAP has sown.”

“It may be a tough journey, but we can make it an enjoyable one, where learning and working can be done, through which positive results are arrived at, even while having fun. The UAP Diliman Chapter is a fellowship, a group of friends and colleagues; a family that celebrates its achievements and joys of being an essential part of the Organization and being of service to the Filipino Community. With our enthusiasm, determination, and passion, we can fulfill our mission of uplifting the Architectural Profession.”

“We ‘Dilimaners’ are there for each other… We learn FROM each other, and we work WITH each other.”

“Nothing is impossible if we’re BOUND AS ONE.”

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