Thursday, October 02, 2008
Atenean wins Bikol’s most prestigious literary prize
Mr. Jerome Hipolito of the College of Education was declared as one of the winners for Poetry category in the 5th Premio Tomas Arejola Para sa Literaturang Bikolnon held at the Holy Rosary Minor Seminary last September 13, 2008.
Aside from Hipolito, Mr. Joner Cañeba (who was declared as the Naga City Jaycees Writer of the Year) and Mr. Sonny Sendon, two other young writers from Iriga City were awarded with a gold medallion and cash prizes. On the other hand, Mr. Juan Escandor, a correspondent of the Philippine Daily Inquirer and the Bicol Mail won in the fiction category while there were no winners declared in the essay and one-act play category.
In an interview, Hipolito who submitted his first collection of poetry Pagbunag nin Paroy said that his first major literary prize is both a confirmation and a challenge to continue to hone his writings. Though a neophyte in the field of writing, Hipolito is excited to write and look for new materials for his poetry, that according to Professor Jazmin Lllana, who served as the chair of the board judges, ‘Hipolito’s works are highly lyrical and a testimony of the long tradition of social realism prevalent in the works of Bikol writers.’
Other Ateneo students who were cited as finalists for their works were Ms. Daphne Benosa for her essay and poetry, Mr. Dan Cariño for his poetry and Mr. Edwin Morales and Mr. Emmanuel Magistrado who collaborated to finish their poetry collection.
Named after the Bikol propagandist and revolutionary, Tomas Arejola, the Premio is run by the Arejola Foundation for Social Responsibility Incorporated (AFSRI), a private group composed of the descendants of Tomas and Gen. Ludovico Arejola who led the revolutionary government in Camarines during the Filipino-American War.
Recently, the foundation received the Naga City Mayoral Award and the Gawad Pedro Bucaneg given by the Unyon ng mga Filipinong Manunulat for its invaluable contribution to the development Bikol writings. Previous winners in the the Premio Tomas which is now regarded as the highest Bikol literary prize are Mr. Adrian Remodo (Philosophy Department) for essay in 2006, Mr. Kristian S. Cordero (Social Sciences Department) for poetry in 2004, Mr. Vic Nierva (Campus Ministry Office and Media Studies Department) for poetry in 2007 and Mr. Jose Jason Chancoco (a graduate last year from the Literature and Languages Department) for his short story for children in 2005.