University of Philippines Manila

Glitz, Glamor, and Glory: UPM and PGH celebrate 2023 Lantern Parade

It was an afternoon filled with   dancing, cheer, and lights as UP Manila (UPM) and the Philippine General Hospital (PGH) celebrated the 2023 Lantern Parade on December 15, 2023, at the PGH Oblation Plaza. The participants included officials and staff from the Central Administration (CAD), PGH, National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the National Teaching Training Center for the Health Professions, and students from the University’s various colleges.

The program, hosted by Dr. Anthony H. Cordero and Dr. Emely D. Dicolen, began with a parade of lantern floats around the campus, passing by the busy Taft Avenue and Padre Faura street. Thereafter, the UPM chorale delivered an invocation, followed by a welcome message from Dr. Johanna Patricia D. Adevoso-Cañal, the Vice Chancellor for Administration and Finance, who emphasized that the true spirit of the celebration was the times the participants shared with their friends and colleagues as they prepared for the competition.

In his message, UPM Chancellor Dr. Michael L. Tee noted that the slight drizzle which caused the audience to open their umbrellas added color and brightness to the festivities. He mentioned the significance of the lantern (or parol in Tagalog), stating that where the parol is, the Lord is there. Dr. Tee then gave special mention to the lantern floats of each participating office/unit, setting their relation to the environment, to the plight of the poor and abused (jeepney drivers in particular), the process of healing, the body and the soul, spiritual needs, and to eternal life.

UP Faculty Regent Carl Marc F. Ramota gave a roll-call of the participating units and congratulated everyone for their efforts. He also reminded the assembly to keep in their thoughts the people whose Christmas commemoration will not be as happy as theirs, in particular jeepney drivers, health workers without benefits, abused indigenous people and minorities, and the Palestinian people. Regent Ramota stressed that Christmas is for the poor and humble, those being excluded and marginalized, and those who could not speak for themselves. 

Asst. Professor Efrelyn A. Iellamo of the College of Nursing (CN) led the Community Dancing portion, with help from CN professors and students, as well as PGH staff.

The following were the winning colleges in the corresponding categories:

Best Christmas Tree

College of Pharmacy (CP)

Best Facades

1st Place – College of Public Health (CPH)

2nd Place – CP and College of Arts and Sciences (CAS)

3rd Place – CN

Most Stunning Group

College of Medicine (CM)

Merriest Group

College of Allied Medical Professions (CAMP)

Most Creative Group


Best Cheering Performance

1st Place – CM

2nd Place – CPH

3rd Place – CN

Best Lantern

1st Place – CM

2nd Place – CAS

3rd Place – CP

Dr. Michael Antonio F. Mendoza, Director of the Human Resource Development Office and UPM Christmas Celebration Committee Chairperson, thanked the participating units for their enthusiastic and energetic participation despite the short preparation time, noting that the event was one of the most well-attended lantern parades in University history. #

By Martin R. Racza

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