Urdaneta City University administration unveiled the newly-constructed Dr. Pedro T. Orata Monument on Friday, February 18, at the Orata Park.
Board of Regents Chair and City Mayor Hon. Julio F. Parayno III led the ceremony before the city officials of Urdaneta and university personnel.
The 8-foot Orata’s monument consists of a gold-bronze fiber headstone set on a granite stone base that stands on an elevated surface honoring the founder’s contribution as the father of barrio high school in the Philippines.
The perimeter of the modern pedestal monument is surrounded by plant boxes situated within the center of the contiguous Caringal, Calvero, and Resorts World buildings. It was moved from its former location in front of the gazebo to memorialize the late educator further.
Meanwhile, Parayno emphasized Orata’s undying legacy in the Philippine education system, which was among the country's pioneering heads of community schools.
“The life and works of Dr. Pedro T. Orata is marvelous that he was able to create his legacy through his innovative ideas of revolutionizing schools and establish the first public high school outside the provincial capitol,” he said.
He also pointed out that Orata ‘was able to reach out to those unfortunate members of the community who could not afford to send their children to school’ through accessible quality education in rural areas.
In a short message, City Vice Mayor Jimmy D. Parayno also shared his thoughts about the late founder’s legacy and advocacy that has created a ripple effect through the years.
“Napagalaman ko na apat na highschool lamang ang unang mga eskwelahan na itinatag ni Dr. Pedro T. Orata at ito’y nadagdagan nang nadagdagan. Utang natin, lalo na sa mga mag-aaral, kung hindi dahil sa kay Dr. Pedro T. Orata ay wala rin tayo sa kinatatayuan natin ngayon,” he implied.
City and university officials concluded the ceremony with a wreath-laying ceremony on Orata’s monument to pay tribute and respect to the UCU founder and kick off the celebration of the university’s 56th founding anniversary.