Five former deans of the University of the Philippines (UP) College of Arts and Letters (CAL) shared their reflections on CAL and the University in celebration of the 40th anniversary of the College’s establishment.
These were National Artist and Professor Emeritus Virgilio Almario, Professors Emeritae Flora Elena Mirano and Emeritus Rosario Torres-Yu, and Professors Josefina Agravante and Amihan Bonifacio-Ramolete.
During her reflection session, Agravante remembered her former student Pastor “Sonny” Mesina Jr. Mesina tragically became the first casualty of the Diliman Commune in 1971 after sustaining a gunshot wound. “I cannot forget him,” Agravante said.
She also touched upon how DZUP, UP Diliman’s college radio station, played a pivotal role during the Commune.
Agravante reflected on the challenges she faced as Dean, particularly in allocating funds among the college’s five departments, likening it to “distributing a piece of cake among five people.”
CAL originated from the now-defunct College of Arts and Sciences, which was restructured in 1983. This reorganization led to the creation of two other colleges: the College of Social Sciences and Philosophy and the College of Science.
Aside from the talk sessions with the former deans, CAL’s departments also showcased their programs and activities.
The celebration was spearheaded by CAL in collaboration with the Department of Art Studies, Department of English and Comparative Literature, Department of European Languages, Departamento ng Filipino at Panitikan ng Pilipinas, Department of Speech Communication and Theatre Arts, Vargas Museum, and Likhaan Institute of Creative Writing.