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Silliman Hall was the first erected building in the campus. Before it became the home of the historical artifacts in the present, it was used as a classroom.

Gumamela or Hibscus rosa-sinenses was abundant in the campus years ago. Unfortunately by the 1990s, the number of gumamela flowers around campus diminished. This, however, did not hinder the gumamela to become the Silliman’s centennial flower.

Dr. David S. Hibbard, the first president of Silliman University, was proclaimed by the Provincial Board as the “adopted son” of Negros Oriental for his noble service towards the people in the province.

Honors Day has become a tradition of Silliman University as a way to publicly recognize students who excel academically. It was initiated in 1959 by Mr. Antonio S. Gabila, who was then the director of the Office of Information and Publications for “the development of scholarship at every level in the University.”

Silliman water is our own purified water in the campus which was set up in 2009 and has been utilized since 2012. When typhoon Sendong hit the Philippines in 2011, the Silliman Water Ministry reached out to the victims by sending drinking water for the relief operations.

Pura Blanco was the first rose among the thorns to enroll in the A.B. program in Silliman University in 1912. After her admission in the university, eight more women enrolled in the same program. In 1916, the high school department followed, accepting its first three women enrollees.

Crisis struck the university in 1977 during the administration of President Doromal. He confirmed in a general meeting that a financial crisis had risen because of deficit intended for the construction projects, operational deficits incurred in the past three years.

Revision was made in the Silliman Song. Before, male students comprised the majority of the population in the campus with only a few female students. Because of that, the Silliman Song chorus lyrics used to be “loyal sons are we of Silliman”, but because of the women’s demand to be recognized, the lyrics was changed to “loyal will we be to Silliman.”

Silliman Library has been an attention grabber in the campus for its toblerone-shaped marker. The 3-storey building was constructed in the late 90s with a budget of $1,275,000.

Dumaguete Mission Station was established in 1901, seven months before Dr. and Mrs. David Hibbard started the Silliman Institute. Rev. Leon C. Hill, a young bachelor from Highland Kansas, began teaching a class with one boy studying Math. Later on, after the year 1901, his class multiplied to 60 students. These students later pursued their studies in Silliman University.

Silliman Portals The four serve as the welcoming posts for people who pass by the Hibbard Avenue. The portals represent the Gate of Opportunity, Service, Knowledge, and Discovery; they are open to everyone who desires to learn and serve for the Truth.

Dr. Leopoldo T. Ruiz was the first-ever Filipino president of the university. Before his position as the president, he was the Philippine Consul to Chicago. One of the significant programs during his time was the Summer Writers Workshop for the pursuit of academic excellence. Through him, the “Speak English” campaign was introduced.

Honorary Sillimanian was first conferred to former Philippine President Fidel V. Ramos with the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Humanities, Honoris-causa in the university. Things that distinguished him from others were his achievements in the fields of health, service to the country, etc. He was the first Protestant Filipino President.

Silliman had a radio station in 1950. Silliman University was granted the franchise to operate a radio station which was called DYSR for mere educational purposes. It started airing in August as a nighttime station with the coverage of 1000 watts. Mass Com students were responsible for handling a program, three hours a day at Guy Hall.

University Gymnasium, which is the center of physical sports and activities has a historical background because of the materials used for its construction. The part of the US Army surplus hangar was airlifted in Dumaguete and was used to build the present gymnasium.

Silliman Truth was the first Silliman newspaper. A lot of campus publications produced by the students were introduced, not only to the campus but also to the community. The Silliman Truth is known as the first campus publication and also the first newspaper in the province with different languages, such as English, Spanish, and Cebuano.

Luce Auditorium is another Silliman pride. The Claire Isabel McGill Luce Auditorium can be compared with the Cultural Center of the Philippines. An air-conditioned hall with more than 700 seating capacity, the Luce construction was worth Php4,350,000. It is distinctly called as “the most modern and sophisticated infrastructure for performing arts outside Metro Manila.”

Silliman’s grading system used to be a letter grade system. However, SU began to use numerical grading system in 1992.

Tree of Life is found in the Portal West Building. There are leaf-shaped plates with names on it. Each tree has 350 leaves that recognize gifts of $1000 each and six rocks that recognize gifts of $5000. The so-called tree of life was a project started by SUACONA, in recognition of the donations to Silliman University Portal West Building.

Katipunan Hall was formerly called as the Mission Hospital which was donated by the Langheim couple. The Mission Hospital was founded in December 1915 and was inaugurated on February 26, 1916. After the establishment of the Silliman University Medical Hospital, Katipunan Hall was later used to house classrooms and offices.

Compiled by Nurlyn Elli

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