The state-of-the-art multimedia setup of the 68th Commencement Exercises of the Visayas State University.

You’ve seen our broadcast yesterday. We thank you for the kind and wonderful reviews we received from the whole VSU community.

We at the University Integrated Media Center (UIMC) are taking all your comments to continuously improve on our work and provide to you the best and the most memorable virtual events for all Viscans.

As this is our second virtual graduation, we learned a lot from our previous experience of mounting a similar event like this exactly a year ago. We retained some of our best practices last year including the adoption of a systemwide ceremony–a thing that only VSU delivered among all universities and colleges in the entire Philippines.

Our reason for mounting a systemwide graduation despite the length of the whole program is simple. We want to send a message that the VSU system is one in this pandemic–that no matter your campus, we are a unified community of Viscans roaming far and wide.

Now in this special feature, we will give you the highlights of the ceremony and count the ways that made #VSUGrad2021 the biggest production VSU has ever produced.

Ceremony highlights

This year’s graduation did not have the usual commencement address but in lieu of that, no less than the Chairperson of the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) and the concurrent Chairperson of the VSU Board of Regents, Dr. J. Prospero E. De Vera III, delivered a special message to this year’s graduating Viscans.

Dr. J. Prospero E. De Vera III

Chair Popoy, as he is more popularly known, was VSU’s Commencement Speaker in the 66th Commencement Exercises held in June 2019.

A total of 1,296 graduates were honored this year across the VSU system–55 of them were graduate students, 496 undergraduates from VSU Main Campus in Baybay City, 212 from VSU Alangalang, 173 from VSU Isabel, 289 from VSU Tolosa, 80 from VSU Villaba, and 81 graduates of the certificate courses across the VSU system.

Of these number of graduates, 31 were accorded with honors with agribusiness student Mr. Jestoni P. Singson being named as class valedictorian after he obtained the highest grade point average (GPA) of 1.407.

Mr. Jestoni P. Singson

Two other students were given special awards, one for leadership and the other for excelling in the board exam.

Ms. Tisha Marie L. Cortez is named as recipient of the VSU Leadership Award, a recognition given by the Office of the Dean of Students (ODS), for a graduating student who performed well in both academics and extra/co-curricular activities.

She served as Student Regent and the first Chairperson of the newly reconstituted University Supreme Student Council Federation (USSCF). She also served as President of the Banaag Visual Arts Group aside from her active leadership in the student council.

Ms. Cortez is a Cum Laude graduate of the Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) program, a feat that is seldom achieved in the College of Veterinary Medicine (CVM).

Ms. Tisha Marie L. Cortez

 Meanwhile, Mr. Christian Jacob C. Espejo, still from CVM, was also recognized for landing 4th place in the February 2021 Veterinary Licensure Examination (VLE).

What made #VSUGrad2021 special

Now we count the ways that made this year’s graduation ceremony as VSU’s biggest and grandest production to date.

We start with our two brand new buses that were featured in the processional of VSU officials and the faculty members.

You’ve seen these vehicles pick up our beloved VSU officials from scenic locations here in Leyte, and from our four component campuses located in Alangalang, Isabel, Tolosa and Villaba before convening in the Main Campus in Baybay City for the conferment of degrees.

These two new buses have a seating capacity of 50 and 28 passengers in a single ride. While these were purchased in 2019 and 2020, it was only during the shoot for #VSUGrad2021 that these vehicles were used in a long-haul multi-location travel.

New VSU Buses

Currently, there are already five fleets of buses in the VSU Main Campus plus a 28-seater coaster in VSU Tolosa.

We’ve also designed the processional to feature scenic and historical sites in the Leyte province as part of our advocacy to promote and support local tourism initiatives.

For this graduation, we’ve taken our graduates and their family members to the famous San Juanico Bridge, the historical Leyte Provincial Capitol and the McArthur Park including a visit to the beautiful pineapple plantation in Ormoc City.

San Juanico Bridge

 Aside from that, this year’s production brought everyone on a virtual tour to the four component campuses showing their sprawling land areas and some iconic landmarks and new infrastructure development in these branch campuses.

VSU Isabel Campus

As for the reading of names of the graduates, we continued with last year’s practice of using videos rather than photos in presenting our 1,296 graduates of the VSU system–something that only VSU did among universities and colleges here in the country.

Just like last year, the video submissions of our graduates featured their scenic hometowns making the public presentation of VSU graduates unique and extra special.

On top of that, the musical score for the reading of names was also an original set of music composed and arranged by Mr. Jed Asaph D. Cortes, Head of the VSU Web Team and the Overall Production and Musical Director of #VSUGrad2021.

Mr. Cortes also re-arranged the VSU Hymn to make it a more solemn rendition as a fitting tribute to the graduating Viscans. This portion of the graduation also showcased selected photographs of the VSU Class of 2021 while they were having their face-to-face classes inside the university.

VSU Hymn

 And finally, a special tribute song performed by selected faculty and staff concluded the 68th Commencement Exercises of VSU. A huge part of this 9-minute musical medley were photographs of the graduating Viscans with their proud family members.

VSU Tribute Song

#VSUGrad2021 is a production of the University Integrated Media Center, the public relations arm of VSU operating under the Office of the University President.

Broadcast of this event was live streamed in Youtube and Facebook and was also made available on the VSU website. You can replay the whole ceremony in this link:

#VSUGrad2021: The 68th Commencement Exercises of the Visayas State State University System

Just like last year, a dedicated microsite will soon be launched to compile the different portions of the ceremony.