By: Brett Andrew Rikke P. Bungcayao
The Department of Language of and Literature (DLL) of the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) comes full force in supporting the simultaneous conducted events such as the Ilokano Nation in the Community of Nations at the University Function Hall and the 5th Association of Students in Humanities, English and Literature (ASHEL) Festival at the University Training Center (UTC) last March 3.
DLL showed their support to student development by attending both events.
ASHEL’s 5th Festival with the theme: Appreciating Cultural Diversity through the English Language and the Arts became an avenue for high school students to expose their artistic, literary and speaking prowess in the different contested activities aimed to support and promote the English Language. The different contested include extemporaneous speaking, poetry and love-letter writing, on-the-spot-painting, charcoal rendering and poster-slogan making.
The festival was participated by 6 high school institutions and among them were the Igama Colleges Foundation Incorporated (Badoc) and the Mariano Marcos State University (MMSU) Laboratory High school (Batac) who both copped the most number of wins in the different competitions.
ASHEL invited Sheryl Lopez Gagala, a freelance artist as their guest speaker. She gamely presented her masterpieces mostly using the materials oil pastel, acrylic paint and charcoal. In her lecture she said that art is not an innate gift, but it is enhanced and developed, “Don’t be afraid to take arts class and even if you’re too old, it’s never too late to discover and love art.”
Gagala managed to give a demo of her painting and sketching skills done within minutes before the awarding ceremonies commenced in the afternoon. She donated her painting to be displayed in CAS.
Meanwhile, Dr. Marlina L. Lino of DLL organized the Lecture forum featuring Dr. Aurelio Solver Agcaoili, a Hawaii-based coordinator of the Ilokano language and Literature program spearheaded the symposium.
In his talk, Agcaoili points out that Filipinos have allowed public policy to become an instrument of subjugation, “We succumb to the seduction of that idea that for us to become a nation, we should be only speaking one language we call as the Tagalog Language which is the national language which is wrong.”
Furthermore he argues that the bilingual education is the most “idiotic” public policies of the country, “the concept in the United States (US) is scholars use the mother tongue amongst Spanish-speaking people in order to progress to another language. The Filipino scholars who came back didn’t understand the philosophy of bilingual education in the US and it is adapted wrongly.”
The symposium ended with a book signing on his book “Gramatika ti Kontemporaneo nga Ilokano” wherein students who had copies got an autograph and a photo opportunity with the guest speaker. He also promoted his newest book Signos which is an anthology of poems.