In 1611, Dominicans in Manila established the Colegio de Nuestra Señora del Santisimo Rosario or the now University of Santo Tomas, making it the oldest existing university in Asia. Originally intended as a college for seminaristas, the school was built within the confines of Intramuros and became alma mater to many illustrious names in Philippine history. After the Spanish colonization — or 300 years later — UST expanded outside the Walled City and into the marshes of Sampaloc.
Today, the UST Main Building stands what could be the most beautiful architectural landmark in all of Manila. The grandeur of Renaissance Revival style. A reprieve from the eyesores along the stretch of Quezon Boulevard. And yes, the Pride of Sampaloc. (Although a number of newer structures inside the campus now do not go in harmony with the Main Building’s character.)
I took a shot at studying architecture here in UST on my way to college back in ’84. The admission test then consists of a massive structural questionnaire that could drive one crazy. And I was not that genuinely serious about academics during those wild days.
Today I’m taking shots of the university once more — from a different angle now.
( My sincerest thanks to Rev. Fr. Winston F. Cabading,OP and to Ms. Arlyn Igtiben of the UST Office of the Secretary General, Ms. Michaella Lagniton and Dir. Giovanna Fontanilla of UST Public Affairs Office for their support to this project.)