By Edna Lhou P. Masicampo, News Writer, The Weekly Sillimanian
Magna Cum Laude graduate in mass communication from Silliman Univeristy (SU)got the first ever Dionisio T. Baseleres Award for Excellence in Campus Journalism last March 24 during the Presentation of Candidates for Graduation at Audio Visual Theater.
Ray Chen S. Bahinting, the Editor-in-Chief of the Weekly Sillimanian (tWS)for the school year 2017-2018 received the award.
Bahinting was involved in tWSsince hissophomore year. In 2016 to 2017, he was tWSNews Writer and now,the Editor-in-Chief. With his participation to the school paper, it helped him to be suitable for the award as the guidelines state that the award will be given to a graduating mass communication student who has been an active staff member of tWSthat have published the most number of well-written news, in-depth or investigative reports, opinion/commentaries or editorials within those three school years.
Bahinting received a cash award of P 5,000.00 and a gold medal which is bigger in size, heavier than ordinary medals and three times more expensive. The medal was conceptualized and designed by Deo Joseph Baseleres, son of Dionisio.
“…this medal or the award serves as a responsibility and a reminder to me as well to keep on telling the truth in serving the real clientele which is the students,” said Bahinting.
He dedicated the award to the whole tWSstaff especially to the 2017-2018 batch, to his mentor and tWSadviser, Celia Acedo,to his supportive family and to God Almighty.
Aside from Baseleres Award, Bahinting also earned University Honors (2017-2018), Most Outstanding Mass Communication Student (2018), winner during the Organizations of Student Services Educators, Inc., Campus Journalism Workshop Contest in Baguio City (February 2018) and received a high commendation in internship at Metrobank Foundation Inc. in Makati City.
During the awarding, Dr. Rosario M. Baseleres personally handed the cash prize and the gold medal to Bahinting with his parents.
On the other hand, the award is in honor of the late Dionisio T. Baseleres, Editor-in-Chief oftWS) when Martial Law was declared in the Philippines on Sept. 21, 1972.
The tWSthen was critical of the Marcos dictatorship and Baseleres was imprisoned for writing fearless editorials attacking the regime.
According to Dr. Rosario M. Baseleres, widow of Dionisio and former dean of SU-CMC, the award aims to inspire Silliman journalism students to be fearless in reporting the truth and to stand by the principles that they have been taught.
“Transforming our grief into gratitude to God for my husband’s well-lived life spent in dedicated and honest service,” Baseleres added.
Before his death, Dionisio was manager for community and media relations for the First Consolidated Bank. He also served as public information officer of Dumaguete City and edited the Mindanao Observer in Dipolog City where he also wrote editorials exposing anomalies in government.