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UM at 73: Fruition of Teamwork, Legacy of a Lifetime

This story appeared on Page 17 of the July 31, 2019 issue of Mindanao Times. To download a copy, visit

Jubilation was in the air as employees, officials, and affiliates of the University of Mindanao gathered as it has done for the past seven decades to celebrate Foundation Day last July 26 at the UM Bolton gym.

Garbed in their best 60’s style California beach party attire, the annual celebration had the theme “UM @ 73: Legacy, Engagement, Innovation,” alluding to what the university has been, and what it can be further down the line as the world changes and new practices are put into place.

Dr. Torres giving his address to the crowd (photo by Jomari Valdez)

In attendance of course was university President and Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Guillermo P. Torres Jr, who underscored the importance that all offices, branches, and affiliates of the university continue to work cooperatively together to once again gather the accolades the school has earned over the past few years.

Miss Foundation Day winner Ms. Hannah Mae Nalangan (center) with the lovely finalists

From passing the rigorous requirements of various accreditation–giving bodies, its graduates going on to top national licensure examinations, and its undergraduates bringing in accolades from various competitions and other extra-curricular activities, the university has been on a ball in the last few years, and for the present school year, is enjoying an enrollment of 42, 000 students across its different campuses and branches, effectively making it the largest private higher education institution in Mindanao and one of the top 10 biggest private schools in the country.

Dr. Torres with the winning Dance Fever team from Zone 4

“We are all in this together. Without our concerted team work and cooperation, these successes would not be possible. I personally do not take credit for the achievements of UM, the credit goes to you and everyone,” said Dr. Torres in his address for the night.

“I could not do it alone, kaya ako’y nagpapasalamat sa inyong lahat,” he said.

Apart from the lucky winners of attractive prizes in the raffle draws during the night, including the highly anticipated three sets of P73, 000; participants were also treated to some healthy and exciting competition with the Miss Foundation Day pageant and the Dance Fever showdown. The different offices are divided into zones every year, and every year since, no zone has failed to bring out their loveliest and brightest, as well as their most graceful and performance ready, to these competitions.

But as with every competition, there will be a grand winner, and for the Miss Foundation, Zone 5 representative Ms. Hannah Mae Nalangan from the Student Accounting Office took home the crown with her eloquence and quick wit with answering the question “If you had the chance to choose which office in UM to be transferred to, which office would it be and why?” Not to mention she carried herself immensely well in her gown, heels, and makeup despite the lights and the heat during the pageant.

Zone 5 is composed of personnel in the UMAEA.

Next, Zone 4 composed of the Digos, Bansalan, and Guianga branches brought the house down with their dance moves and had the crowd roaring with their performance. Of course everyone had their favorites, but Zone 4 emerged the top winner, beating out last year’s champions from Zone 2.

The night was indeed a celebration filled with conversation, food, dancing, and making memories, only making everyone look forward to what next year has in store.


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