Breaking the Fourth Wall: An Open Letter

To the Alumni Association:

It was with a heavy sense of disappointment that I read about the decision of the Ateneo’s Board of Trustees to unanimously reject Mr. Manuel Pangilinan’s resignation from the board over the plagiarized commencement speech delivered to this year’s graduating class.

In my twelve years at the Ateneo, I was taught that plagiarism, along with other acts of dishonesty, was wrong. I prided myself in attending a school with an honor code, and that took that code seriously.


I believe that rejecting Mr. Pangilinan’s offer to resign, especially in view of his numerous contributions to the University, belittles the act of plagiarism as well as his supremely Atenean act of owning up to his mistake.


I no longer wish to be counted as a member of the Ateneo Alumni Association, and am requesting that my name be removed from all mailing lists and e-mail lists.


While the Ateneo loses nothing by losing me as an alumnus, I believe that I lose more by claiming to be an alumnus of a school that taught me most of the values that I hold dear, and that I still try to live by, but sets these values aside for whatever consideration. This is not the Ateneo way.


  1. Just wanted to let you know that the Ateneo Alumni Association (AAA), Office of University Development & Alumni Relations (OUDAR) and Board of Trustees are all separate offices. I was surprised it was addressed to the AAA.

  2. I’m more interested in the speechwriters of Manny Pangilinan. If they are HANDSOME, that fact alone could speak for itself why this is all happening.

  3. On Jessica Zafra’s blog, Manny Pangilinan’s speeches have been plagiarized since 1997. There are links to previous speeches and the texts of where the speechwriters copied them from.

  4. Oh, the tales I can tell you about this, One Tamad…

    It’s been insane and disappointing, and quite frankly, the golden rule is in full force. He who has the gold, makes the rules.

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