Divine Word College of Urdaneta is the youngest of the universities and colleges owned and managed by the Society of the Divine Word (SVD), popularly known as the Divine Word Missionaries.
Early in 1963, The Society of the Divine Word decided to open a seminary of its own in Urdaneta. Later, the idea of adding to it a high school and college was approved. Father Augustine Herbers, SVD was put in charge of this big project. A lot consisting six and a half hectares was bought in 1964. On March 20 1966, the Most Reverend Madriano Madriaga D.D. blessed the cornerstone with great solemnity. By the school year 1967-1968, the modernistic three – story building was ready to open its doors to the first year students. There were 8 seminarians, 165 high school and 72 college students. Father George Hardwart SVD was the First College Director and Father Augustine Herbers, SVD was the First Seminary Rector. At the end of the same school year the first batch of Secretarial students graduated and the First High School graduation took place I 1970. From its very first existence, the Divine Word College offered High School, Secretarial, Commerce, Liberal Arts and Education courses.
In the school year 2003-2004 the institution welcomed the Preschool pupils’ using the first floor of the seminary building. That same year started the construction of the elementary building to be ready for the incoming Grade 1-6 for the next school year. (DWCU Journal)
Today DWCU is among the private schools to offer Grades 11 and 12 with strong emphasis on the skills and techniques offering a high class quality of education from well-trained instructors.
A year of celebratory events to mark the 49th Anniversary began on the 26th of February with an anticipated mass. The mass presider Fr. Romeo Fajardo (a former DWCU Regent in 1983) alongside with the SVD Community; DWCU staffs students’, alumni’s and guests. Before the closing prayer Mr. Julio Parayno III who was a PTCA President and Alumni President was given a Certificate of Appreciation for having been made a significant contribution towards the school’s development and growth, facilitated improvement of school, or assisted in strengthening the school’s reputation. Fr. Romeo Fajardo, SVD ended his heartfelt message with “DWCU Going Alive in a Golden Mission!”
Fr. Gil T. Manalo, SVD DWCU’s President was so optimistic prior to the Foundation Anniversary, he led each and every faculty and staffs for the preparation of the said event, reminding each and every one of their tasks and contributions.
After the official ceremonies the celebration continued with the much awaited motorcade which started 10:30 a.m. in DWCU and headed to Asingan, Sta Maria, Carmen, Villasis and back to Urdaneta. Upon coming back to the school everyone were invited to witness the blessing of the Science Laboratory which will be used by the incoming Grades 11 and 12 (Junior and Senior High students). The event gathered guests mostly the school alumni who showed their undying support and admiration to their beloved alma mater.
In the afternoon the alumni’s, teaching and non-teaching staffs showed their dancing prowess as they danced to the beat of Zumba and shed their sweats off, such an ideal inspiration to the students who dances with them.
On the second day February 27, the students from Elementary, High School and College Departments were gathered at St. Michael’s Gymnasium, and competed in the Cultural Dance Competition; this enables the students to show off their talents as they portray a specific culture from different places here in our country manifesting each regions culture and richness boasting with embellished décors and props. The students showed their cooperation and unity as they participated in the competition and bested each other.
The students did not disappoint the guests as everyone wowed in their performances matching the colorful and unique costumes made for them, truly a remarkable event the students must remember in their lifetime as they stay and study in DWCU.
The Anniversary ended the event with boomerang as the candidates for Mr. and Ms. Students Fest ramped their way on the stage revealing the students best of the best. This was taken in the afternoon at St. Michael’s Gymnasium.
From the eye catching Creative Costume show casing the incredible talent of designing and creating an extra ordinary costumes proudly fitted for them, down to the very elegant Formal Wear, clear-cut the pride and glamour one possesses.
The candidates feel their moment and ponder their personalities, making everyone enthralled in ecstasy as the candidates put their best foot forward and enjoyed what they were doing. The parents who were there proudly smiling and giving inspirations and cheers to their son/daughter are a tear jerking scene.
The event wouldn’t be possible without the extended help and support of the sponsors, alumni’s, PTCA officers, Ms. Carol Sayapen (Pre-Elementary and Elementary Principal) Mrs. Marlyn Laroco (High School Principal) Mrs. Joelita Bernabe (College Dean), students, parents, and guests.
DWCU is looking forward to celebrating its 50th Golden Anniversary next school year and everyone are all very excited as to what the school will flaunt. But nevertheless, with the help of everyone who made this year’s anniversary possible, there is no doubt that the Golden Anniversary is worth waiting.