ArchivesJune 2011SU shines at New York parade

SU shines at New York parade


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It is often touted as the biggest Philippine Independence Day celebration outside the Philippines, and the annual event held in New York City on the first Sunday of June each year never fails to amaze the revelers with its glitz and glamour. People from all over the world line up a stretch of Madison Avenue in Manhattan to witness this colorful parade of Filipiniana costumes and cultural presentations, as they look out for celebrities who often grace the occasion by their participation.

This year’s Philippine Independence Day Parade, held on Sunday, June 5, was one that brought great pride and honor to Silliman University. For the first time in this event’s history, a Sillimanian is running the show.

Josephine ‘Joji’ Juele-Jalandoni, a BSN 1979 graduate of Silliman University, has been elected President of PIDC Council, which is composed of representatives of various Filipino organizations and tasked with the planning, guiding and directing the whole celebration. In a brilliant display of astute leadership and dogged determination, she steered the celebration into what turned out to be a very successful affair.

PIDC’s guest of honor this year is Philippine Vice President Jejomar Binay. He came, graced the celebration with his presence, and was duly honored. “But in my heart, my real guests of honor are the Sillimanians who supported me and honored the whole celebration by their presence, led by no less than SU President Ben Malayang III and Mrs. Gladys Malayang,” said Joji Jalandoni. “This is truly a proud day to be a Sillimanian, and I am filled with joy.”

Throughout her involvement at PIDC, people in the Council and the Consulate know Joji as “the lady from Silliman.” She has been very active in SU activities, having served as President of the SU Alumni Association in NY-NJ in 2007-2009. Presently, she is the Secretary of the SU Alumni Council of North America (SUACONA). Silliman has been a big part of her life, so much so that she insisted to have the SU delegation march right behind her during the parade, next to her own family – a clear message to the public of who she is and where she belongs.

Silliman University had a contingent of around 35 alumni led by SU President Ben Malayang III and SU Trustee Sylvester Almiron. They came to honor the PIDC President, and proudly displayed the Silliman brand to the appreciating public.

The day started with a flag-raising ceremony at 8 a.m. at the Philippine Consulate. President and Mrs. Malayang, Trustee Sylvester Almiron, and PIDC President Joji Jalandoni joined a throng of dignitaries led by Vice President Binay, Philippine Ambassador to the U.S. Jose Cuisia, Jr., Ambassador to the U.N. Libran Cabactulan, and Consul General Mario De Leon in a patriotic rite of commemorating the Philippine Independence, after which the Consulate hosted a breakfast. From there, they were all ferried to the parade assembly area on Madison Avenue.

Pictures on the flag-raising ceremony and the parade are posted elsewhere in this website. Click here.

President and Mrs. Malayang will be in New York until Tuesday, June 7, when they will be attending a dinner at 6 p.m. hosted by the SUAA-New York/New Jersey Chapter at El Filippu Restaurant in Queens. Dr. Malayang will give an after-dinner talk to the alumni, discussing the present initiatives of the university. According to SUAA-NYNJ President Dely Po Go, the list of people signing up is growing everyday, so she urges those who want to attend to make their reservations right away by emailing her at [email protected].

Ben and Gladys Malayang have visited New York several times in the past, but the spirit which prevailed during the June 5th celebration must have made them conclude, as did the alumni who were there, that this was indeed a great day to be a Sillimanian.

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