DLSU hosts testimonial dinner for new Lasallian diplomats

The College of Liberal Arts (CLA) hosted the first testimonial dinner for its four graduates who passed the highly competitive Foreign Service Officer (FSO) examination and joined the Philippine Foreign Service Officer Corps last October 11, 2019 at the Roof Deck of the Henry Sy, Sr. Hall.   The honorees were Bea Antonio (AB-ISE ‘11), Anna Clariza Briones (MA IS), Louie Dane Merced (AB-ISA ‘09), and Reisha Olavario (AB-ISA ‘10).   

This is the first time that four DLSU graduates passed the FSO at the same time. St. La Salle scholar and summa cum laude graduate Merced topped the 2017 FSO Examination with a grade of 86%.  

The four Lasallians have finished their six-month cadetship last June 2019 and are now serving as career diplomats.  

In his welcome remarks, DLSU President Br. Raymundo Suplido FSC exulted the four graduates to be honorable diplomats who will not only look for inspiration and guidance from the “reason of state”, but also from their conscience and values. He reminded them that diplomats are human beings who must be truthful not only to their profession, but also to their conscience and values. 

For her part, CLA Dean Dr. Jazmin Llhana told the honorees that they may come back to their alma mater as lifelong learners, who may either take short courses when they need to or share their courses, share their experiences, and expertise for the lifelong learnings of others.

DLSU alumnus Ambassador Jose Cuisia, Jr.  gave the inspirational talk by sharing his experience as the Philippine ambassador to Washington D.C. from 2011 to 2016.  He recounted his experience in strengthening the two countries’ alliance in the face of the growing tension between the Philippines and China because of their territorial dispute in the South China Sea.  He also observed that all Lasallian ambassadors have been political appointees, and expressed hope that the four Lasallian diplomats will become career ambassadors in the future. 

On behalf of the four honorees, Merced thanked De La Salle University for providing them the knowledge, skills, and attitude that enabled them to pass the FSO and become members of the Philippine diplomatic corps.  He also thanked his alma mater for the gift of scholarship he received when he entered the University as a freshman in 2006.

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