Story & Photos By Georgene Quilaton-Tambiga
One hundred, forty-eight pioneering Thomasian cadets of the Reserved Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) of the National Service Training Program (NSTP) have officially graduated today, May 30, 2023. This is the first batch of Thomasian ROTC cadets.
Maj. Rene P. Piabol, Jr., commandant of the 525th Department of Air Science and Tactics (DAST) of the Philippine Air Force (PAF) declared the trainees as graduates.
SSg. Jouie A. Pepito, the NCOIC of the 525th DAST, led the presentation of graduates and the awarding of Certificate Recognition to four Thomasian flight leaders namely: Lournie Ian Villaros (Alpha), Romel Sayson (Bravo), James Cadorna (Charlie) and Philippe Lloyd Largo (Delta).
“The role of the youth, especially Thomasian cadets in nation building” was the central theme of the inspiration message of Rev. Fr. Cristopher C. Maspara, OAR.
Fr. Maspara, being the President and NSTP Director of Colegio de Sto. Tomas-Recoletos, challenged the graduates to live out the training given to them through ROTC.
Kiepner S. Tampon, battalion commander, led the Thomasian cadets and he is set to undergo further training with the PAF at Mactan-Benito Ebuen Air Base in Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu with nine other Thomasian cadets.
Today’s ROTC graduation marked a milestone as the first of its kind for CST-R’s College Department. It was also an apt commencement for the eight months of rigid military training that began last September 3, 2022.