by Reina Tamayo
On August 27, 2016, the freshmen scholars received a warm welcome from Ateneo Gabay in the form of Neofight, an annually held event created not only to welcome the new members of the university’s scholar community, but also to provide them with helpful tips on how to survive the demands of university life. The event was held at Faura AVR, and a total of 33 freshmen scholars attended the said event.
After registration ended at 8:15, the program officially began with a prayer led by project head Alyssa Boller, and opening remarks from co-project head Glydelle Amon. Afterwards, the event immediately continued in high spirits with the help of hosts Ian Blanco and Niña Gochy, as well as the first of the Group Dynamics, Human Bingo.
Mr. Gino Trinidad, the first speaker, gave the freshies a talk to inspire them to pursue nothing short of excellence for their entire journey in college. This was immediately followed by the Fresh from a Freshie talk, given by Ms. Rae Grepaldeo, a 2nd year Merit Scholar. She relayed her own experiences as a freshman last year, and gave the freshies tips on how to do well in their first year.
After a brief rest in the form of snacks and another group dynamic, Kuya Louie Cartagena, last year’s Gabay President, gave the last of the series of talks, on how to build the freshmen’s confidence. He believes this will undoubtedly help them in their academic and social performance in college.
The Scholars’ Support Group program (also known as SSG), another Ateneo Gabay project, was also officially launched afterwards. The program holds a similar purpose to Neofight (that is, to equip the freshies with the knowledge and skills for their survival in college), though SSG does this through the creation of “support groups” led by a pair of upperclassmen scholars, who will serve as their “ates” or “kuyas” for the rest of the school year. After the year’s SSG Facilitators were introduced and performed the OrSem dance for their freshmen, everyone broke up into their respective groups to get to know each other better.
The event was concluded with closing remarks from project head Alyssa Boller, and after a brief picture-taking session, the crowd moved to Gonzaga where the freshmen had lunch with their SSG facilitators.
Project Head: Alyssa Boller and Glydelle Amon
Programs Core: Christelle Cortez, Arianna Gaza, and Alizza Ibrahim
Secretariat Core: Jireh De Vera and Blaise Pamplona