I graduated from the University of the Philippines 11 years ago (WOW) and I haven’t been back for quite some time since we moved here in Saigon. Before, we’d spend our December watching some events in the Engineering Week or we’d be heading to the UP Fair on February.
So it was a welcome treat to get in touch with fellow alumni here in Ho Chi Minh City and to have dinner with former UP President Dodong Nemenzo. He regaled us with his stories during his time as president — as well as updated us on what’s happening in our alma mater.
Brod Dodong, as we fondly called him because he is our confraternity brother in UP Plebeians, is humble and intelligent. Together with him visiting Ho Chi Minh City is his wife, sis Princess. We actually invited them to our wedding in 2004 but they weren’t able to attend. I even told sis Princess that they actually sent over a wedding gift. I remember their gift clearly because we got bottles of wine from them which we brought during our Coron trip.
Brod Dodong is one of the founders of our confraternity in the late 1950s. Back then, there was no physical hazing. There was however academic hazing wherein members are required to maintain a GPA of 1.5, if I remember correctly. We’ve had several parties at the Executive House where he resided during his term together with Egay Aglipay, Senator Cayetano, Ruben Torres, and Chief Justice Hilario Davide.
Anyway, it was terrific that he visited Vietnam and allowed us UP graduates to come together. I didn’t know there were so many of us here in HCMC — most came from the 70s batch. The youngest I think was Rina who is from batch ’99.
Husband and wife, Liza and Benny Caleda made the gathering possible at An Restaurant in District 1 — terrific food by the way!
Hopefully, this event will not be the last for us UP alumni and soon we can come up with activities that will somehow benefit our school.
Here’s all of us:
UP Fight! 🙂
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