with reports from Danielle Aglubat
As a new academic year begins, De La Salle University formally welcomed its freshmen through its Lasallian Personal Effectiveness Program (LPEP) held last August 29 to September 8. Themed Camp Animo, the two-day orientation aimed to help the incoming college students get acquainted with their peers, and with the University itself. Classroom orientations, a campus tour, and performances from school organizations awaited the freshmen, culminating in the Frosh Welcoming Walk.
Rundown of events
This year’s LPEP was divided into four batches, across eight days. The morning activities on the first day began with an introduction to the Lasallian prayers, followed by a Eucharistic celebration held at the Teresa Yuchengco Auditorium. Once mass ended, the national anthem was sung during the entrance of colors.
DLSU President Br. Ray Suplido FSC gave his opening remarks to welcome the ID 118 students, then the Alma Mater Hymn was then taught to the students. Finally, University Student Government (USG) President Gabbie Perez introduced the USG Executive Board and each of the college presidents before sharing her own words of encouragement and advice to the freshmen.
After a quick break, the freshmen were moved to their respective classrooms to get better acquainted with their blockmates, and the overall framework of Lasallian education. The Expected Lasallian Graduate Attributes and Lasallian Core Curriculum were introduced and explained during these sessions.
Come afternoon, the freshmen attended their Lasallian Modules, followed by a familiarization of the Lasallian Reflection Framework. They were given an overview of The Learning Commons, before ending the first day with a synthesis and recap of the whole day’s events.
The second day saw the students undergoing modules provided by the Office of Counseling and Career Services and the Student Discipline Formation Office. After lunch, however, the remaining events scheduled were for the students’ enjoyment. The freshmen were treated to performances from the DLSU Animo Squad, and the Culture and Arts Office groups.
LPEP ended with the highly anticipated Frosh Welcoming Walk, where various organizations welcomed the freshmen to DLSU with booths in bright circus colors, themed Carnival: Animoland!
However, as one of the planned LPEP days on September 3 had been suspended, the second batch of students, comprising of freshmen from the School of Economics and Gokongwei College of Engineering, had parts of their program rescheduled to September 15. Specifically, the academic concerns module, library module, Lasallian module, and campus tour were moved, with the make-up program to be announced in due time.
With LPEP occuring once a year for the incoming freshmen of DLSU, there is no doubt that Lasallian Ambassadors (LAMBs) play an important role in ensuring the program’s success.
Rap Ballesteros (III, MGT) shares that one of the reasons he decided to join LAMBs was the opportunity to be of service. “What really pushed me was actually being able to represent the community in a manner that I can be in service for the people,” he states.
Meanwhile, Andrae Yap (III, PSM-MKT) relates that it was his own experience as a freshman in LPEP last 2016 that convinced him to eventually join them, and stressing the importance of the ambassadors for freshmen to enjoy the experience. “I think it should be the environment and the LAMBs. They have to have that vibe in which they want the frosh to be really excited,” he explains.
When it comes to the theme of this year’s LPEP, Cedric Naldoza (V, MGT), who is part of the Documentations and Publicity core, explains that it was already a proposal for quite some time by members within their team. “It started last year, among a small group of us. It was a proposed idea but it didn’t push through,” he explains.
Moreover, Naldoza enumerates how they worked on the theme and how they want to have a different output compared to the previous year, specifically on integrating the camping aspect. “It’s a difficult theme to integrate into LPEP since it’s uncommon, and we really wanted a different kind of output or feel for the University, since we see the University and University life as an adventure, for froshies, and it’s a different experience,” he explains.
In the eyes of the frosh
Incoming 118 students gladly share their thoughts and insights on the short but memorable Lasallian welcome.
Martin Wong (I, CIV) calls the LPEP experience “frightening and exciting at the same time.” He shares that his favorite part of the LPEP was the “part where I got to sit together with my class… to be familiar with them.” He also adds that the experience has made him look highly on his block mates. “[They’re] regular people who are fun to be with,” he says.
Kyle Muyot (I, PHY-PMD) had high expectations for LPEP, as his upperclassmen in high school shared fond memories of the program. “It was fun because I was from a former [La Salle] school like La Salle Green Hills. And from what I heard from alumni who also study in [DLSU], they say it’s like a bigger home,” he recounts.
Yarra Bunga (I, AB-SEA) shares Muyot’s thoughts, “The energy, it’s very vibrant, and super daming tao nagwe-welcome sayo”. (The energy, it’s very vibrant, and there’s a lot of people welcoming you). She also praises the LAMBs involvement, citing that they were attentive to addressing concerns.
Mariel Salud (I, MTH-CAP), on the other hand, also welcomes the LPEP experience, but specifically cites learning about the history of La Salle as one of the main takeaways from the program.
LPEP gives every Lasallian a first chance to build friendships with their blockmates, a first glimpse of University life, and a first peek of everything else that awaits them. As an annual tradition, freshman students from all walks of life are given the warmest welcome, signalling the start of a new chapter in their lives.