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Dr. Jose Rizal at the University of Santo Tomas

Dr. Jose Rizal at the University of Santo Tomas

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Dr. Jose Rizal at the University of Santo Tomas
Dr. Jose Rizal at the University of Santo Tomas

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Published by: Mark Denver Francisco on Nov 26, 2008
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08/21/2013

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At the University of Santo Tomas
Fortunately, Rizal’s first romance, with its bitter disillusionment,did not adversely affect his studies in the University of Santo Tomas.His love for higher education proved to be greater than his love for apretty girl. After finishing the first year of the course in Philosophy andLetters (1877-780), he transferred to a medical course. During theyear of his studies in the university, which was under the Dominicans,rival education of the Jusuits, he remained loyal to Ateneo, where hecontinued to participate in extra curricular activities and where hecompleted the education course in surveying. As a Thomasian, he wonmore literary laurels, had more romances with girls, and foughtagainst Spanish students.
Mother’s position to higher education.
After graduation withthe highest position in Ateneo, Rizal had to go the University of SantoTomas in order to prepare him self to a private career. The Bachelor of arts degree during Spanish times was equivalent to a high schooldiploma today. It merely qualified its holder to enter a university. BothDon Francisco and Paciano that Jose should pursue a higher learning.But Dona Teodora did not want him to study more. Evidently she had apremonition that to much knowledge would imperil his child life.In a family council in the Rizals home in Calamba, shevigorously objected to have her beloved Jose acquired a highereducation. She was thinking of the safety of her son. She know thefate of Filipino intellectuals-Father Burgos, Dr. Antonio Ma. Regidor,Jose Ma. Basa, and others of 1872-who were either executed or exiledby the Spanish authorities, and blamed their sad fate to their learning.
 
Fearful of the Spanish authorities who seem to frown on thoseFilipinos who learn to much, she warned her husband. “Do not sendJose again to Manila. If gets to know to much, they will cut off hishead!” Jose, who was present in their family council when his mothersaid this, was shocked. He know her mother was a woman o educationand culture: she even taught him and inspired him to write poetry; shecame from a family of high learning – her own brother ( and his uncle)Jose Alberto Alonso had been educated abroad and could speakmultiple Spanish, French, English and German.Rizal enters the university. In April 1877, Rizal, who was bearly16 years old, matriculated in the University of Santo Tomas taking upPhilosophy and Letters. He enrolled in this course for two reasons: (1)his father like it and (2) he was was “still uncertain ti what career tofollow”. He had written to father Pablo Ramon, Recotr of the Ateneo,who had been good to him during his days in Ateneo, asking for advicein the choice of career. Unfortunately, Father Recto was in Mindanaoand during those days it several months to travel a letter from Manilato Mindanao. Consequently during his first term (1877-78) in theUniversity of Santo Tomas he studied Cosmology, Metaphysics,Theodicy and History of Philosophy.It was during the school term (1978-79) that Rizal took upmedicine, enrolling simultaneously in preparatory medical course andthe regular first year medical course.
 
The reason why he studied medicine were:
1.)
he wanted to be a physician so that he may cure his mother’sfailing eyesight.
2.)
the Father Recto of the University, whom he consulted for achoice of career, finally answered his letter, and recommendedmedicine.
Finishes Surveying course in Ateneo (1878).
During his term inUniversity of Santo Tomas (1877 – 78, Rizal also studied in Ateneo, hetook the vocational course leading to a title of 
 porito agrimensor 
(expert surveyor)). In those days it should be remembered, thecollege for boys in Manila offered vocational courses in agriculture,commerce, mechanics and surveying.Rizal’s unhappy days at UST. Rizal’s Ateneo boy wonder, found theatmosphere at the UST a suffocating to his sensitive spirit. He wasunhappy of this Dominican Institution of high learning because (1) theDominican processors were hostile to him, (2) the filipino studentswere racially discriminated, and (3) the method of teachings wereobsolete and repressive.
Decision to study abroad.
After finishing the fourth year of hismedical course, Rizal decided to study in Spain. He could no longerendure the rampant bigotry, discrimination, and hostility in UST. Hisuncle, Antonio Rivera, Leonor’s father, encourage him to go abroad.Both Paciano and Saturnina, whom he contacted secretly, were of similar opinion.

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