The UP Alumni Association inaugurated a scenic elevator at the three-story Ang Bahay ng Alumni on Tuesday, February 14, 2017. Dubbed “Alay sa Alumni”, and with a capacity of 6-8 persons, the brand-new elevator has been installed for the convenience of elderly UP alumni, especially those who are physically challenged.
UPAA President and Alumni Regent Ramon M. Maronilla made the welcome remarks, followed by the unveiling of a marker, ribbon-cutting, blessing of the elevator, and inaugural ride.
The guest speakers were Dr. Alfredo E. Pascual, immediate past UP President; Atty. Felipe L. Gozon, GMA Network chairman; and Dr. Amelia Mangay-Maglacas, retired WHO Chief Scientist for Nursing. Atty. Gozon said his Class of 1962 (2012 Golden Jubilarians) did the easy part by simply donating, and was delighted with the improvements he kept on seeing. Dr. Mangay-Maglacas spoke on the essence of true giving – that of one’s self. Dr. Pascual praised the UPAA leadership for the legacy project, which followed the airconditioning of the main hall that he had initiated while still UPAA president. Dr. Ramon Acoymo, former UP College of Music dean, rendered a song medley highlighted by the piece You Raise Me Up.
The UPAA elevator project began at the UP General Alumni Homecoming and Reunion on June 23, 2012, with a gift of P1.1 million for the purpose from the 2012 Golden Jubilarians (Class of 1962), led by the class president, Atty. Felipe Gozon, and the class adviser, former Vice-President Jejomar Binay. The check was given to outgoing UPAA President Gladys S.J. Tiongco.
Because the amount was sufficient for the elevator unit only, the next UPAA president, Ponciano E. Rivera, Jr., issued an appeal for other donors to fund the civil works. Dr. Amelia Mangay-Maglacas, responded by donating P1 million from her life savings on April 24, 2015.
The succeeding UPAA Board under President Ramon Maronilla finished the job by providing the balance of the needed funds, holding a launching ceremony on November 24, 2015, as well as a ground-breaking ceremony for the shaft construction on August 23, 2016, and eventually seeing the elevator project through to its completion.