4 MD-PhD and 20 Cum Laude Students Lead 2018 UP College of Medicine Graduation

by Louie Dy, Class 2021

Photos courtesy of Markyn Jared Kho, Class 2020

A GLORIOUS DAY: UPCM Class 2018 stands on the risers with the distinguished and honorable guests of the UP College of Medicine, UP Manila, and Philippine General Hospital seated in the front two rows.

Four MD-PhD students – the first batch of graduates under the MD-PhD program, along with twenty cum laude students, led the graduates at SULÔ: Doktor Bilang Tanglaw ng Lipunan – The UP College of Medicine 109th Commencement Exercises and Philippine General Hospital Internship Program Closing Ceremonies, held last July 22, 2018 at the University Theater in UP Diliman.

With Dr. Anthony Geronimo H. Cordero as the master-of-ceremonies, the program began with the UP College of Medicine (UPCM) faculty gracing the aisles, along with chiefs, chairpersons, professor emeriti, and other honorable guests, followed by the glorious onstage procession of the Post-Graduate Interns (PGIs), MD-PhD candidates and graduates, and UPCM Class 2018.

The UP Rayadillo conducted the entrance of the Philippine Flag and University Colors, followed by UP Medicine Choir leading the Invocation and National Anthem.

The Welcoming Remarks and Opening Remarks were given by Incoming Dean Charlotte M. Chiong and Outgoing Dean Agnes D. Mejia respectively.

FROM LEFT TO RIGHT: PGH Director Dr. Gerardo D. Legaspi, UP Manila Chancellor Dr. Carmencita David-Padilla, Commencement Speaker Dr. Jose Y. Dalisay, Jr., Dean Charlotte M. Chiong, and Dean Agnes Dominguez-Mejia.

Dr. Charles Michael T. Herrera, the president of the graduating class, and Dr. Katherine Marie De Asis, the president of the Post-Graduate Interns, led the petitions for the conferment of the degree of Doctor of Medicine to UPCM Class 2018, and for the declaration of completion of internship, respectively.

Dean Dr. Agnes Dominguez-Mejia and Philippine General Hospital Director Dr. Gerardo D. Legaspi presented the medical graduates and clinical interns, respectively, to UP Chancellor Dr. Carmencita David-Padilla. Chancellor Padilla then formally conferred the degree of Doctor of Medicine and declared their completion of internship.

INSPIRING BEYOND WORDS: Dr. Jose Y. Dalisay, Jr. is a writer with sixteen (16) Palanca awards, author of Soledad’s Sister, and also one of the Ten Outstanding Young Men of 1993 for his creative writing. He currently serves as the Vice President for Public Affairs of the UP System.

Dr. Jose Y. Dalisay, Jr. delivered the Commencement Address. His message and challenge to the newest Filipino graduates was met with inspired hearts. A witty quote from his speech was taken and shared in Twitter, which became viral:


INTERSTELLAR: Dr. Marie Abigail Rivera Lim took meaningful and heartfelt pauses as she contained her valedictory address into words. The full valedictory address of Dr. Abby Lim, edited by Dr. Ella Masamayor, “Reasons”, can be found at this link: https://www.facebook.com/notes/abby-lim/reasons/2046948361983215/

This was followed by capping, hooding, and awarding of diplomas and certificates of internship to the graduates.

Dr. Marie Abigail Rivera Lim took top honors as class valedictorian, the Most Outstanding Medical Graduate, and recipient of the Dr. Augusto A. Camara Awardee for Academic Excellence in Medicine. Dr. Ma. Sergia Fatima Papiona Sucaldito followed as class salutatorian, and Dr. Krizia Joy Ang Co was the third ranked graduate.

The rest of the top ten include: 4th place Dr. Michelle Ann Sua Lao, 5th place Dr. Judith Charmaine E. Rosette, 6th place Dr. John Vincent Usita Magalong, 7th place Dr. Julian David Paulino Cabrera, 8th place Dr. Marvin Manuel Mangulabnan, 9th place Dr. Erickah Mary Therese Ranit Dy, and 10th place Dr. Riza Paula Macalma Labagnoy.

Other cum laude graduates include: Dr. Joshua Vincent Hedriana Baroña, Dr. Roan Eireen Lontok Buenaventura, Dr. Vernon Ang Chuabio, Dr. Kaiser Marr De Guzman Cruz, Dr. Jose Mario Coliflores Espino, Dr. Jonathan IV Jallorina Macatiag, Dr. Ella Mae Inoferio Masamayor, Dr. Rosa Fides Goño Mina, Dr. Eleanor Beatriz Calderon Ragasa, and Dr. Aina Fe Roldan Salem.

DUAL DEGREE: Dr. Jonnel B. Poblete represents the first batch of MD-PhD graduates as he petitions for the conferment of the degree of MD-PhD to Chancellor Padilla.

Dr. Ruby Anne Natividad King, PhD, Dr. Bobbie Marie Murillo Santos, PhD, Dr. Jonnel Bernal Poblete, PhD, and Dr. Fresthel Monica Marqueses Climacosa, PhD constitute the first batch of graduates under the MD-PhD program. Dr. Climacosa also received the Dr. Adolfo B. Bellosillo Academic Excellence Award and the PCHRD Award for Most Outstanding MD-PhD Dissertation for her dissertation entitled “Development and Characterization of Microbe-binding Peptides for Opsonization of Microbial Contaminants”.

Five MD-PhD students of UPCM received their certificate of internship from the Philippine General Hospital, and will graduate with the degree of Doctor of Medicine – Doctor of Philosophy in Molecular Medicine in 2020 upon completion of their research dissertation: Dr. Criselda Jean Goh Cruz, Dr. Maria Isabel Canlas Idolor, Dr. Ana Joy Paulino Padua, Dr. Joyce Ann Hernandez Robles, and Dr. Angelo Augusto Mendoza Sumalde.

Postgraduate interns from the following institutions also received their certificate of internship from the Philippine General Hospital:

  • Angeles University Foundation – School of Medicine
  • Cebu Doctors’ University – College of Medicine
  • Cebu Institute of Medicine
  • Central Philippine University – College of Medicine
  • Davao Medical School Foundation, Inc. – College of Medicine
  • De La Salle Health Sciences Institute – College of Medicine
  • Emilio Aguinaldo College – School of Medicine
  • Far Eastern University–Nicanor Reyes Medical Foundation Institute of Medicine
  • Iloilo Doctors’ College – College of Medicine
  • Lyceum–Northwestern University Dr. Francisco Q. Duque Medical Foundation – College of Medicine
  • Manila Central University–Filemon D. Tanchoco Medical Foundation – College of Medicine
  • Mindanao State University – College of Medicine
  • Our Lady of Fatima University – College of Medicine
  • Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila – College of Medicine
  • San Beda College of Medicine
  • Southwestern University–Matias H. Aznar Memorial College of Medicine
  • Southwestern University–PHINMA School of Medicine
  • Saint Louis University – School of Medicine
  • University of Northern Philippines – College of Medicine
  • University of Perpetual Help System Dalta–JONELTA Foundation School of Medicine
  • University of Santo Tomas Faculty of Medicine and Surgery
  • University of St. La Salle – College of Medicine
  • University of the East Ramon Magsaysay Memorial Medical Center, Inc. – College of Medicine
  • University of the Visayas – Gullas College of Medicine
  • Virgen Milagrosa University Foundation – College of Medicine
  • West Visayas State University – College of Medicine
  • Xavier University, Ateneo de Cagayan – School of Medicine

The Most Outstanding Intern is Dr. Marvin Manuel Mangulabnan. The following students rounded out the top ten Outstanding Interns: 2nd place Dr. Marie Abigail Rivera Lim, 3rd place Dr. Ma. Sergia Fatima Papiona Sucaldito, 4th place Dr. John Vincent Usita Magalong, 5th place Dr. Josephine Edulian Mina, 6th place Dr. Kurl Jamora (DLSHI), 7th place Dr. Antonette Mariama Ramos Bilog, 8th place Dr. Jonathan Jallorina Macatiag IV, 9th place Dr. Kiko Antuerfia Cortez, and 10th place Dr. Ron Michael Labador Castillo.

Diplomas were awarded to the graduates of Master’s and Doctor of Philosophy programs.

Maria Rowena Garcia Alde and Maureen Salas Landicho received their Master of Science in Clinical Audiology.

Daffodil Mahusay Canson, Christian Deo Torrequemada Deguit, Patrick Gabriel Gavila Moreno, and John Sylvester Brusola Nas received their Master of Science in Biochemistry.

Dr. Tomas Dumagpi Bautista, Dr. Eva Ilagan Bautista, and Dr. Namnama Paraso Villarta-De Dios received their Master of Science in Clinical Epidemiology.

Dr. Graciel Mae Rodrigo Canoy and Danalyn Romo Echem received their Master of Science in Genetic Counselling.

Martin-Luther Castillo Topico, Atty. Reno Regalado Gonzales Jr., and Dr. Rosel Jonathan Santos Vitor II received their Master of Science in Health Informatics (Medical Informatics), Bioethics, and Physiology respectively.

Dr. Ursela Guce Bigol and Dr. Leana Rich De Mesa Herrera received their Doctor of Philosophy in Biochemistry.

There were two faculty awardees. Dr. Jose Leonard R. Pascual V of the Department of Anatomy took the UPMASA Missouri-Southern Illinois Chapter Outstanding Medical Teacher in the Basic Sciences Award, while Dr. Cecilia A. Jimeno of the Department of Pharmacology received the corresponding award for the Clinical Sciences.

Other student awardees were Dr. Ana Pholyn Arazo Balahadia and Dr. Harjoland Lim Obenieta receiving the Sir Hugh Greenwood Outstanding in Community Service Award, Dr. Jonnel B. Poblete receiving the Oreta-Dizon-Santos-Ocampo Research Award, Dr. Charles Michael T. Herrera receiving the UPMAS Leadership Award, and Dr. Mark Jason Dela Cruz Milan receiving the Eusebio S. Garcia-Class ’36 Leadership Award.

In closing the program, Dean Chiong led the graduates in swearing the Oath of Hippocrates, and PGH Director Dr. Gerardo Legaspi gave the closing remarks.

I SOLEMNLY PLEDGE: UPCM Class 2018 graduates raise their right hand as they recite the Oath of Hippocrates


THANKSGIVING: Dr. Charles Michael T. Herrera moves the audience with his speech. The full speech by Dr. Herrera, “The Faces of a Medical Student”, can be found at this link: https://www.facebook.com/notes/charles-herrera/the-faces-of-a-medical-student/10155873717112987/

For the challenge of loyalty and service to the Filipino people, Dr. Charles Herrera accepted it on behalf of his classmates.

Class 2018 was then joined by UP Medchoir in singing their Tao Rin Pala-winning piece “Alay”, followed by the PGH Hymn, Awit ng Kolehiyo, and finally UP Naming Mahal.

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