IPED 2020 Winter Merienda

By Hjalmar Breit

Another Winter Merienda has come and gone. Despite the disruption of COVID-19, we are thankful to have been able to celebrate our annual IPED Graduation Ceremony. While adjusting to safety guidelines created new challenges, it was a pleasant evening overall with some Merienda staples: jokes about the program itself, fond looks back at our time together, and celebration of our achievements thus far.

Mariam Guniava receiving the Mateo Ricci Award for the Class of 2021

Among the many highlights of this year’s Winter Merienda is the  presentation of the class gift. The group decided to raise funds and donate $600 to Ateneo’s Disaster Response and Management (DREAM) Team who is currently supporting communities affected by Typhoon Rolly (internationally known as Typhoon Goni) which devastated the country at the end of October.

Special effort was made to make the event as inclusive as possible to those who were not able to attend. Cameras were set up to allow for streaming via YouTube (you can find the ceremony here) and virtual activities to allow those not present to participate (congrats to our trivia winner, Bianca!). What makes IPED a remarkable program (besides the flexibility to self-organize an event like this) is its commitment to community. Our cohort has grown incredibly close to each other and it was truly humbling to host this most cherished event.