By Aadit Trivedi ’21
The Filipino Student Association is a cultural group here a Bellarmine that meets every Monday at lunch in Ms. Antonio’s room, L-102. I interviewed Abbe Pingol ’21 who said that all the members of the club call Ms. Antonio “Tita Cora” to demonstrate their respect towards her.
When asked what goes on during a normal FSA meeting, Abbe responded and discussed about the initial prayer, followed by a productive meeting in which the members of the club organize events such as the Santo Nino celebration. The club has a lot of fun, partaking in pastimes such as karaoke when they are free.
Moreover, the Filipino Student Association has multiple events that they help organize and participate in. According to Abbe, the club participates in Bellarmine’s Santo Nino celebration along with Bellarmine’s Cultural Unity Assembly. FSA has also organized PCN, Pilipino Cultural Nights at Sobrato where members embrace their culture by singing and dancing.
When finally asked for something that Abbe particularly enjoys or finds interesting about the club, Abbe gave a multi-folded response. “For me, since my elementary/middle school was predominantly Filipino, being from the Philippines was simply the norm. However, in a place as insanely diverse as Bellarmine, Filipinos simply represent a section of our school instead of the whole. Consequently, I got to learn about my own culture, began to embrace it more, and saw how unique my identity really was in the grand scheme of things.”
Abbe explains how the Filipino Student Association is one cultural group in an assortment of many others. While it is important to embrace one’s culture, as Abbe wonderfully puts it, it is important to learn about the cultures around us.