PUP San Juan celebrated its first founding anniversary on February 20, 2009 with joy and pride.
A convocation was held with the theme, "PUPSJ on Its First Founding Anniversary: Establishing and Creating a New Beginning" with its number one patron, Mayor Joseph Victor "JV" G. Ejercito, as the keynote speaker.
Before 9:00 a.m., the street in front of PUP San Juan was streamlined with cars and inside that campus were PUP President Dante G. Guevarra, San Juan Vice Mayor Leonardo G. Celles, councilors and officials of the city of San Juan, OIC Zenaida R. Sarmiento, Student Services Head Joey S. Pinalas, and PUPSJ faculty members as well as those from the main campus. They all waited for the San Juan mayor to come.
As usual, PUP Banda Kawayan rendered music; both native and pop, adding to the festive atmosphere of the day until the guest speaker arrived and pleasantries were said.
The program started with a doxology, "The Prayer" originally sang by Andrea Boccelli and Celine Dion followed by the Banda Kawayan's national anthem and on went the program that touched the audience specially the students to whom all messages were directed.
OIC Zenaida R. Sarmiento welcomed all to share them in the celebration and expressed gratitude to San Juan Mayor J.V. Ejercito and PUP President Dante G. Guevarra on behalf of PUP San Juan for the support they have been giving to realize the goals of the flourishing institution. "Had it not been for Mayor Ejercito and our very own President Guevarra, we would not be able to realize the goals of this extension," the OIC said. She further added that with the efforts exerted by these concerned officials in putting up PUP San Juan, it is but right that all students study hard in return.
Likewise, VP for Finance Marissa J. Legaspi congratulated and wished PUPSJ good luck in the years to come; then Student Services Head Joey S. Pinalas, who got the loudest applause from the students, introduced the convocation speaker.
Mayor Ejercito started his speech giving Dr. Guevarra his sincere gratitude for helping him realize his dream for the city residents come true. He pledged his full support for the school. "I promise to make PUP San Juan beautiful and furnish it with facilities in one year so that the next time you come on this same occasion, a new PUP San Juan will welcome you," he addressed the PUP president.
The mayor narrated how he had dreamed of having a college for his constituents when there was no place to start the college and there seemed to be no chance at all until by a stroke of luck, DepEd Chair Jesli Lapus granted them the former Addition Hills Elementary School after lobbying for the said property. This was renovated and converted into PUP San Juan Campus where students and personnel breathe fresh air in its nice environs.
He revealed that through the concerned efforts of Rep. Ronaldo Zamora, San Juan City Officials and PUP President Guevarra, PUPSJ was erected in three months. "If you put your heart, mind, and soul into something, nothing is impossible. Investing in education will bring back the country at its feet so the city of San Juan allotted P50 million in the school and another P50 million will be coming the next year," JV announced in the midst of a loud applause from the audience.
"I believe that in a year's time, everything here will be complete and you will transfer to that new building being constructed with all the facilities needed. Study well not only for yourself and your families but also for PUP that gives you the best quality education almost for free and for your country. Be the seeds to grow in the future to get the Philippines back to its feet again," advised the San Juan mayor before ending his message.
When PUP President Guevarra took the microphone, he congratulated PUPSJ students because they have a mayor who loves them and who attends to their needs, that's why they have an instant campus. He did the same to OIC Sarmiento for the year's accomplishments and announced that on that day, she is appointed director of PUPSJ. According to him, all the other branches and campuses underwent years of sacrifices to have themselves established. Some of them until now are housed in unfinished buildings just so school operation can go on. "The greatest gift that man could give others is education. Ito ay panlaban sa kahirapan at ito rin ang magdadala sa atin sa magandang kinabukasan. To the glory that was Greece; to the grandeur that was Rome," quoted he.
Dr. Guevarra explained that Greece was known for its quality education and Rome for its beautiful architecture. PUPSJ will give its students both - beauty and education that will bring them good life. All that they can give back is to study hard to make their mayor happy.
Madame Guia Gomez, the mother of the San Juan mayor, expressed her happiness for her son whose dream to give the city collegiate education has come true thru the help of PUP President Guevarra. "Maswerte tayo kay Dr. Guevarra na tumutulong sa mga taga San Juan para magkaroon ng edukasyon na mag-aahon sa mga mamamayan sa kahirapan."
Vice Mayor Leonardo Celles claimed to be a dreamer also. He wanted a college for San Juan; thus, when PUPSJ was started, he worked side by side with Mayor Ejercito to get P50 million for PUPSJ. This he worked for laboriously upon knowing that out of 10 college students, only two finish their schooling and just one lands a job according to statistics. He pleaded the students to make good in their studies for a brighter future that Mayor Ejercito envisions for his constituents.
Just like the vice mayor, Councilor Dante E. Santiago urged the youth to grab the chance that was offered to them and give back to their benefactors. "Bear in mind that a lot of efforts and money are spent on you by your mayor and your president so in return give your best, study hard and take advantage of this rare privilege."
Finally, EVP Victoria C. Naval gave PUPSJ her congratulations to all on that special day and said, "There are two teams to beat" in that occasion. The team of Dr. Guevarra who made a mayor's dream to have a college in his city realized and Mayor Ejercito's team who did not allow PUP San Juan's youth to grope in the darkness of ignorance. Both are steadfast in working for the aspiration of the people in San Juan.The program ended at 11:30 with a resolve to make PUPSJ one of the best campuses of the Polytechnic University of the Philippines