UP Meridian welcomes the year of the Earth Dog

by Janelle Uy (Class 2023)


​Last February 12-15, 2018, UP Meridian held its week-long Chinese New Year celebration in anticipation for the Year of the Earth Dog. For each day of the week, a different activity was held to promote knowledge and appreciation of the Chinese culture within the College of Medicine and PGH.

​The celebration kicked off with the opening of an exhibit on Monday, February 12, at Calderon Hall Lobby. Spearheaded by the current batch of UP Meridian applicants, led by Raphael Rodolfo (Class 2020), the exhibit recounted the legend of the 12 Chinese Zodiac Animals, with each animal’s unique characteristics, and the years that correspond to them.

​A workshop on Chinese painting was held on Tuesday, February 13, 2018 under renowned College of Arts and Sciences History professor, Mr. Arnulfo Esguerra. The participants were oriented on the basics of Chinese painting such as brush handling and stroke writing, before being taught how to paint a bamboo and a flower. A selected few participants were fortunate to take home on-the-spot paintings made by Sir Esguerra himself.


​The tikoy eating contest was held on the third day, February 14. Participating pairs competed to finish their plate of tikoy first. Tikoy, a sticky and sweet Chinese delicacy made from glutinous rice, represents the closeness of the family that shares it, as well as the “sticking” of luck all year round. Three pairs emerged victorious: Leander Quilang and Kirby Plando (Class 2020) took third place, Gere Ang and Raffy Baybay (Class 2022) took second, and Pardau Valerio and Mark Awingan (Class 2020) took first place in this sweet affair.


Thursday, February 15 was packed with activities to herald in the new year. First was a Lion Dance exhibit by the Xavier Lion Dance Troupe. Different wards and offices around the UPCM and PGH were enthralled by the grace and ferocity of the art of the Lion Dance.

Dr. Philip Niño Tan-Gatue, one of the advisers of UP Meridian, then lectured about the art and science of acupuncture at the MSU. He elaborated on the different forms of the practice as well as misconceptions surrounding it before proceeding to a live demonstration for volunteers of the audience.

After the acupuncture session, the audience was treated to a Grand Pakain of typical Chinese fare, such as siomai, lumpia, pancit, and tikoy.

“Chinese New Year is a very meaningful holiday among Chinoys. I am happy with the way the activities turned out this year, and that through them, we were able to share part of the rich traditions and culture to the College and PGH. During the lion dance, I saw how enthusiastic and excited the faculty, staff, and patients of PGH to celebrate this important occasion with us,” recounted Markyn Jared Kho (Class 2020), President of UP Meridian.

Photos by Markyn Jared Kho (Class 2020)

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