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Oscar Lopez to receive honorary degree at UPD commencement rites


Oscar M. Lopez

Oscar M. Lopez, chairman emeritus of the Lopez Holdings Corporation and the First Philippine Holdings Corporation, will be conferred an honorary Doctor of Laws degree at the 101st General Commencement Exercises of the University of the Philippines Diliman.

The rite will be held on April 22, 3 p.m. at the University Amphitheater.

Lopez will receive the university’s highest academic distinction for his “distinguished service to learning and to humankind through his lifelong passion for biodiversity conservation which fires his generous support for research in the biological sciences, thereby helping strengthen the science of plant taxonomy, tropical forest ecology, and wildlife biology in our country.”

According to the UP Board of Regents, the Doctor of Laws degree is awarded “to persons who have distinguished themselves in service to the state, to learning and to humankind.”

Lopez is also being recognized for “championing a nationalist bias which fuels his drive to compete with the world’s best, to work for the advancement of our country and people.”

At the Clinton Global Initiatives-Asia meeting in 2008, Lopez was acknowledged for two projects, namely the re-greening of the Philippines through the Energy Development Corporation (EDC), and the other through the Knowledge Channel Foundation (KCF), which installed satellite dishes or cable connections to 80 public schools in Metro Manila.

According to its website, the EDC is “a pioneer in the geothermal energy industry with more than three decades of proven business viability.” The KCF “is committed to bring quality education to all Filipinos by using television as an effective and efficient teaching tool”and bringing quality educational programs to some 2.7 million students all over the country.

Acknowledged as a staunch supporter of corporate social responsibility, Forbes Magazine named him a “Hero of Philanthropy” in Asia in 2007 for his family’s efforts to assist in the livelihood programs in Guimaras province. He was also honored in Monaco with the IMD-Lombard Odier Hentsch Distinguished Family Award in 2006 for “an outstanding commitment on philanthropy for the family’s achievement in excellence such as the clarity and sustainability of their social endeavors, exemplary corporate governance, a focus on family values, and the involvement of multiple generations.”

Nineteen summa cum laude will lead more than 4,000 candidates for graduation at the ceremonies, where 3,281 will receive their undergraduate degrees, 656 their Master’s degrees and 61 will be hooded on stage for obtaining their doctoral degree.

UP awards the highest academic honors of summa cum laude to graduates who have earned a weighted average grade (WAG) of 1.20 or better.

The top honors are: Julianne Keane M. Pascual, BS Psychology, with the WAG of 1.053; Annabellee D. Chua, BS Chemical Engineering (1.094); Gabriel Luis E. Roque, BS Business Economics (1.105); Kevin Charles V. Atienza, BS Computer Science (1.127); Charlton Sean II D. Gaerlan, BS Business Administration and Accountancy (BSBAA, 1.134); Mark Jasper Lucas Co, BS Mathematics (1.142); Paolo Gabriel C. Cacnio, BS Industrial Engineering (1.151); and Cherry Joy Francisco Tumampo, BS Molecular Biology and Biotechnology (1.163).

Completing the list are: Daryll L. Naval, BA Psychology (1.17); Brian H. Huang, BSBAA (1.173); Marie Anjeliesse M. Rodriguez, BS Psychology (1.178); Patricia Ann D. Uy, BS Psychology (1.181); Trishia Julienne C. Simeon, BSBAA (1.181); Joanne Sheana H. Baltazar, BA Philosophy (1.181);Patricia Ann D. Uy, BS Psychology (1.181); Patricia Maria Gregoria Villegas Mina, BS Biology (1.185); Anna Victoria A. San Pedro, PS Psychology (1.187); Karl Ezra S. Pilario, BS Chemical Engineering (1.193); John Eddie R. Ayson, BS Electronics and Communications Engineering (1.194); and Kimberly Anne C. Tan-Afuan, BS Architecture (1.189).

Gaerlan, the summa cum laude with the fifth highest WAG, will deliver the response for the graduating class.

In addition to the top honors, UPD produced 222 magna cum laude, graduates with a WAG of up to 1.45 and 862 cum laude, with WAG of up to 1.75.


Citation-Bionote of Dr. Oscar M. Lopez

Chancellor's Welcome Remarks

UP President's Message

Dr. Oscar M. Lopez Commencement Speech

Valedictory Address

Meet the Summas

Program