A new batch of Blue Eagles is set to go down from the hills of Loyola Heights.
Angelo Kouame, Geo Chiu, Jason Credo, Jacob Lao, Matthew Daves, and JC Fetalvero are set to receive their Ateneo de Manila University diplomas during the graduation rites of the school on Friday evening.
“It’s been an amazing journey in the Ateneo. Made a lot of friends and I found a family here,” said Kouame, a former UAAP Most Valuable Player.
“Thankful to everyone in the community and the people who made it possible for me to be in this position.”
Kouame will immediately join Gilas Pilipinas in Lithuania this weekend.
Chiu and Credo, who will still play for the Blue Eagles in UAAP Season 86 as Master student-athletes, graduated with degrees in AB IS and AB Communication, respectively.
Daves, who is currently playing Makati in the MPBL, also finished with a degree in AB IS.
Lao, currently the team manager of PBA team Converge, received a degree in BS Restaurant Entrepreneurship.
Finally, Fetalvero, who is playing for Phoenix Super LPG in the ongoing PBA on Tour, finished with an A.B. Management Economics degree.
Proud is Blue Eagles head coach Tab Baldwin of his now-former wards, confident that they will be successful in whatever path they choose.
“The relationships I have with these players are treasures of my career,” said Baldwin. “I think they bring honor to our team and to the sport with the work that they do. They humble me with their dedication to this university.
“Wish them nothing but success for what lies ahead.”
“Most people tend to walk away from difficulties and adversities in sports or academics. However, there are those exceptional athletes who not only rise above these challenges but also emerge victorious, even during the trying times of the COVID era,” added Blue Eagles team manager Christopher Quimpo.
“Their triumph in the UAAP serves as a testament that overcoming obstacles is possible. It underscores the idea that it is our response to adversity that shapes us into the individuals we ultimately become.”
A total of 46 athlete-scholars are part of Ateneo’s batch of 2023.