By: Vincent Carlo Cuzon
The Pinag-isang Lakas ng Samahan ng mga Progresibong Atenista (PIGLASAPAT) is a socio-civic-political club that pushes for Social Democracy in Ateneo de Davao University.
PIGLASAPAT flourished in a time when political turmoil and societal unrest plagued the country. During the Martial Law years, it was high time for prevalent youth activism and empowerment, rolling down to that of the Ateneo de Davao Community.
Progressive Ateneans, who were responsive to the call for greater involvement, established what would now be known as Ateneo’s longest-running and most historic socio-political club. The club was established in 1986 through the convergence of two prominent clubs in Ateneo de Davao University: PIGLAS- political in nature, and SAPAT-a socio-civic club.
PIGLAS, the then political club, was known for its staunch “pagpiglas” or “breaking away” from the conventional impositions of political systems. SAPAT, which was known as Samahang Agham Pampulitika ng Ateneo (SAPAT), was formed to tap the university administration for the then need to open a Political Science program in the university.
Both clubs were merged in the pursuit of providing a better and more effective service for the students, along with the belief that two heads are better than one. Thereafter, the club was known as Pinag-isang Lakas ng Samahan ng mga Progresibong Atenista (PIGLASAPAT).
The phoenix logo was made to symbolize the inter-generation passage and nourishment of the legacy of the club. The phoenix is known for its incessant rebirth, from one plumage to a new one.
As expected, it was not smooth-sailing start. It was a tough start for PIGLASAPAT because it was always seen and considered as an opposition. PIGLASAPAT fought and pushed its mission for years. In 1992, other political parties had emerged but PIGLASAPAT remained standing – burning with the fire of the phoenix.
In the year 2000, the club came out stronger than ever and became the dominant socio-political party in the university. In mid-2004, the other political parties have ceased to exist, which made PIGLASAPAT the only surviving socio-political club that time.
By 2005-2006, other independent parties came out and new political parties were established. Nevertheless, PIGLASAPAT has constantly thrived on its mission for student-servant leadership. PIGLASAPAT continues to undergo rebirth – stronger after each challenge it faces.
Today, PIGLASAPAT continually develops its members with lakas, extending its brand of leadership to the corporate world, academe and the government.