Xavier University-Ateneo de Cagayan held a Dedication Day to the Blessed Virgin Mary for the XU Masterson Campus and Manresa Township on September 8, 2022.
“Today, we recognize that the Campus of the Future is a gift from God to Xavier Ateneo, to us, a gift that needs our collective effort to make it happen, to make it stand right on this site,” said Fr. Mars Tan, SJ, Xavier Ateneo President. “Same thing can also be said of the adjacent CLI Manresa Township, a complex of high-rise buildings and low-lying structures to complement the XU Masterson Campus.”
“As such, we are dedicating the entire Manresa site to our Blessed Mother so that she will cover the whole place with her motherly love, consolation, protection, and guidance. She will also give us the inspiration to work on this project from beginning to its full completion,” he stressed.
The Dedication ceremony consisted of a Eucharistic celebration for the Feast Day of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, followed by the dedication, blessing, and ground breaking where Xavier Ateneo’s Campus of the Future will rise.
“The solemn ceremony will serve as XA’s gratitude to the Lord and to all in the university and city who helped begin the Campus of the Future,” Fr. Mars said. “It will also serve as an affirmation of the new campus project being part of God’s noble work in our educational mission.”
The new campus, dubbed “Masterson Campus” in honor of the great Jesuit visionary Fr William Masterson SJ, will provide innovative and smart components for synchronous and asynchronous learning, pioneering Tesearch, artistic expression, and whole-person formation.
The masterplan includes an abundance of open spaces, a main plaza, interconnected courtyards, campus-wide wireless connectivity, bike lanes, sports facilities, newly-designed academic buildings, and the center of the life of the Xavier Ateneo community, the University Church.
The Masterson Campus will be constructed on a 21-hectare land in Manresa, adjacent to the 14.3-hectare township to be known as “Manresa Town.” It will be near XU’s 12-hectare Basic Education Complex in Pueblo de Oro Township, allowing the integration of campuses for greater efficiency and modernization.
The 25-hectare forest reserve and animal sanctuaries will be retained.
This new campus is fit for the new normal as it provides innovative and smart components for synchronous and asynchronous learning, pioneering research, artistic expression, and whole-person formation.
The Manresa Town will complement Masterson Campus to provide students with generous open spaces, convenient and safe residential options, easy access to commercial establishments and future-ready offices.
“The road ahead of us is not easy. The task is tremendous, which I cannot carry out alone, so I am asking for your support and cooperation. This is not the only challenge we have in the university; there are several more we have to address urgently yet thoroughly. We have to do it one at a time.”
“Amidst all these, I am blessed to have very good Campus of the Future committees: Finance/Documentation/Legal; Communications & Information; Learning Development and Innovation, Heritage and History; Campus Development, and a separate set of Aggie Committees for the transfer and establishment of the new College of Agriculture farm and facilities in El Gaucho.”
“Teamwork and effective partnership between Xavier Ateneo and Cebu Landmasters Inc (CLI) mark the preparations and planning that have brought the Project to this stage,” Fr. Mars stressed. “We are happy to share this milestone with the university administrators, faculty members, staff, students, alumni, parents, stakeholders, and the community at large.
In particular, Fr Mars cited Fr Provincial Primitivo E Viray, SJ, Fr Roberto C Yap, SJ, the XU Board of Trustees under the leadership of Mr Frank F Guerra III, and the executives of CLI, led by CLI Chairman and CEO Jose R Soberano III and COO Franco B Soberano, for their unfailing devotion and for extending their time, effort, and expertise to ensure this project’s success in every phase.
“I am blessed to have you here supporting this noble project of Xavier University: to the city LGU especially to Mayor Rolando Uy, and former Mayor Oca Moreno, the city council, the Board of Trustees for wise guidance and support, my ever helpful brother Jesuits, and I can humbly say, for the trust and confidence of my Fr Provincial, all the Ateneo University presidents, and the good Archbishop Jose Cabantan,” Fr. Mars added.
“Most of all, XU’s development partner in this huge project, the CLI, for its highly professional yet quite personal also, business dealing with us.”
For his part, the elder Soberano said he is honored to be part of this game-changing project for both XU and Cagayan de Oro.
“Both CLI and XU have always shared the same goal – this new campus and university town is truly for the betterment of the people of Cagayan de Oro City,” Soberano said. “This development will serve as a key catalyst for both the education and economy in the entire region.”
Despite the still tremendous odds facing the project timeline, Fr. Mars expressed optimism it would eventually be completed in time.
“With all these, I can confidently say, the new XU campus will rise on this site with God’s grace and your constant support and help,” he declared.
“As for us, we commit ourselves to this gargantuan task to build a new 21st century Xavier Ateneo for the city, the region, Mindanao, and the Philippines; for us, our children, and the coming generations of Kagay-anons, Mindanaoans, Filipinos, and international students.”
“This is the Society of Jesus’s commitment to advancing the education apostolate in this part of Mindanao. This is Xavier Ateneo’s commitment to producing new generations of young people, our children, to become competent, committed, and compassionate graduates bringing us to greater heights for God’s greater glory and the service to humanity.