Ateneo debuts at Yale University World Scholar’s Cup with 140 medals

November 29, 2017
By: 
Paul Daza & Joel Falgui; Photos by Lani de Leon, Marivic Ocampo and JC Mercado

(L-R) Junior division scholars Simon Angoluan, Josh Caluya, Andrei Gelbolingo, Rap del Valle, Xavi Tuazon, Christian Tiamzon, David Bejarin, AC Saulong, Michael Ocampo

Representing the Philippines, 18 high school debaters from Ateneo de Manila University made a remarkable debut at the World Scholar’s Cup Tournament of Champions (WSC TOC) organized and hosted by Yale University. Yale held the WSC TOC in its New Haven, Connecticut campus from November 10 to 14, 2017. The Ateneans harvested a total of 140 medals- 58 golds and 82 silvers- in the prestigious competition that pitted them against close to 2200 students from 50 countries.

(L-R) Senior division scholars Gareth de Leon, Yuan Ordenes, Shawn Tongson, Javy Pineda, Riane Oquiza, Raphael Estacio, Carlos Pastoral, Paco Blanco, Matthew Mercado
Though the WSC TOC is in its 10th year, the 2017 edition marked the first time that the Ateneo de Manila joined the competition. Representing Ateneo Junior High School at Yale were eventual medalists Simon Angoluan (five golds, seven silvers), David Bejarin (two golds, eight silvers), Josh Caluya (three golds, four silvers), Gareth de Leon (one gold, five silvers), Rap del Valle (one gold, five silvers), Andrei Gelbolingo (seven golds, four silvers),

Michael Ocampo (two golds, four silvers), AC Saulong (one gold, three silvers), Christian Tiamzon (one gold, two silvers), Shawn Tongson (two golds, six silvers), and Xavi Tuazon (two golds, three silvers). From the Ateneo Senior High School were Paco Blanco (eight golds, four silvers), Raphael Estacio (six golds, three silvers), Matthew Mercado (five golds, five silvers), Riane Oquiza (four golds, three silvers), Yuan Ordenes (two golds, nine silvers), Carlos Pastoral (three golds, four silvers), and Javy Pineda (three golds, three silvers).  The medal tallies of Andrei Gelbolingo and Paco Blanco each include an additional gold medal for being the most bemedalled students fielded by Ateneo de Manila in the junior and senior division, respectively. 

Andrei Gelbolingo (left) and Paco Blanco (right) were the most bemedalled Ateneans of the junior and senior divisions of the WSC TOC, respectively

Also noteworthy about the awards/medals harvested by the Ateneo delegation are the following:

SENIOR DIVISION

-Paco Blanco is ranked 29th in Challenge Literature, 13th in Challenge Special Area (Modern Mythology), 48th in Challenge History, 115th Champion Debater, and the 52nd best Champion Scholar out of approximately 1,100 contestants in the Senior Division. As stated earlier, he is also the top Senior Division Scholar for Ateneo de Manila University.
-Shawn Tongson is the 119th ranked debater in the Senior division and his team (Tongson, de Leon, Ordenes) is the 49th top debate team out of approximately 366 teams in the Senior division
-Yuan Ordenes is ranked 44th in Challenge Literature out of approximately 1,100  Senior division contestants
-Matthew Mercado is ranked 67th best Champion Scholar, 46th best writer, and 129th Champion Debater in the Senior division out of approximately 1,100  contestants and his team (Mercado, Pastoral, Blanco) is the 27th top debate team and 42nd top writing team as well
- Carlos Pastoral is ranked 41st in Challenge Science out of approximately 1,100  Senior division contestants
-Raphael Estacio is ranked 38th in Challenge History, 47th in Challenge Science, and 177th Champion Debater out of approximately 1,100  Senior division contestants  in the Senior division and his team (Estacio, Oquiza, Pineda) is the 19th top debate team, 51st Scholar's Bowl team, and 43rd Champion team out of an estimated 366 teams
-Riane Oquiza is ranked 16th Champion Debater out of approximately 1,100 Senior division contestants
 
 
JUNIOR DIVISION

- Andrei Gelbolingo is ranked as the 49th Champion Scholar, 113th Champion Debater, 120th Writing Champion, and 44th in Challenge Special Area (Modern Mythology) out of approximately 1,100 contestants in the Junior division. As previously stated, he is also the top Junior Division Scholar for Ateneo de Manila University.
-David Bejarin is ranked 10th in Challenge History out of approximately 1,100 contestants in the Junior division and his team (Bejarin, Tiamzon, and Tuazon) is the 61st ranked Writing Team in the Juniors Division out of approximately 366 teams.
- Xavi Tuazon is ranked 91st Champion Writer out of approximately 1,100 contestants in the Junior division
-Josh Caluya is ranked 50th in Challenge History out of approximately 1,100 contestants in the Junior division and his team (Angoluan, Caluya, Gelbolingo) is the 36th Top Challenge Team and the 42nd Top Writing Team out of an estimated 366 teams.
-Simon Angoluan is the 179th Writing Champion, 19th Challenge Special Area, and 47th ranked in Challenge (All Subjects) out of approximately 1,100 contestants in the Junior division
-AC Saulong is ranked 44th in Challenge Arts & Music out of approximately 1,100 contestants in the Junior division
-Michael Ocampo is ranked 48th in Challenge History, and 44th in Challenge Literature out of approximately 1,100 contestants in the Junior division
-Rap del Valle is ranked 159th Debate Champion out of approximately 1,100 contestants in the Junior division
 
Here is a more detailed description of each Atenean’s medal haul:
 
Ateneo Junior High School
 
Simon Angoluan (Pamplona/10-Zuraire)-five golds, seven silvers
INDIV: three golds (19th in Special Area, 47th in Challenge, 179th in Writing), five silvers (104th in Social Studies, 88th in History, 57th in Literature, 136th in Science, 194th Overall)
TEAM: two golds (36th in challenge, 42nd in writing), two silvers (179th in Scholar’s Bowl, 133rd Overall) 
 
David Bejarin (La Storta/8 Cottam) - two golds, eight silvers
INDIV: one gold (10th in History), six silvers (166th in Social Studies, 65th in Literature, 137th in Science, 72nd in Challenge, 211st in Writing, 294th Overall)
TEAM: one gold (61st in writing), two silvers (108th in Scholar’s Bowl, 130th overall)
 
Josh Caluya (Montserrat/9-Lalemant) - three golds, four silvers
INDIV: one gold (50th in History), two silvers (139th in Social Studies, 432nd in Writing)
TEAM: two golds (36th in challenge, 42nd in writing), two silvers (179th in Scholar’s Bowl, 133rd Overall) 
 
Gareth de Leon (Cardoner/9-Berno) -one gold, five silvers
INDIV: two silvers (118th in Social Studies, 300th in Debate)
TEAM: one gold (49th in debate), three silvers (76th in Challenge, 100th in Scholar’s Bowl, 77th Overall)
 
Rap del Valle (Pamplona/9-Southwell) - one gold, five silvers
INDIV: one gold (159th in Debate), three silvers (117th in Science, 201st in Writing, 172nd Overall)
TEAM: two silvers (58th in Challenge, 91st in Writing)
 
Andrei Gelbolingo (La Storta/10-Gelabert) - seven golds, four silvers
INDIV: five golds (44th in Special Area, 113th in Debate, 120th in Writing, 49th Overall, #1 in School), two silvers (52nd in Arts, 130th in History)
TEAM: two golds (36th in challenge, 42nd in writing), two silvers (179th in Scholar’s Bowl, 133rd Overall) 
 
Michael Ocampo (Pamplona/9-Spinola) -two golds, four silvers
INDIV: two golds (48th in History, 44th in Literature), two silvers (162nd in Science, 142nd in Special Area)
TEAM: two silvers (58th in Challenge, 91st in Writing)
 
AC Saulong (Pamplona/9-Sitjar)- one gold, three silvers
INDIV: one gold (44th in Arts), 1 silver (226th in Writing)
TEAM: two silvers (58th in Challenge, 91st in Writing)
 
Christian Tiamzon (Cardoner/8-Arrowsmith)- one gold, two silvers
TEAM: one gold (team ranked 61st in collaborative writing), two silvers (team ranked 108th in scholar’s bowl, team ranked 130th overall)
 
Shawn Tongson (La Storta/10-Garnier)- two golds, six silvers
INDIV: one gold (119th in Debate), three silvers (160th in Literature, 343rd in Writing, 187th Overall)
TEAM: one gold (49th in debate), three silvers (76th in Challenge, 100th in Scholar’s Bowl, 77th Overall)
 
Xavi Tuazon (Cardoner/8-Aranha)- two golds, three silvers
INDIV: one gold (91st in Writing), one silver (444th in Debate)
TEAM: one gold (61st in writing), two silvers (108th in Scholar’s Bowl, 130th team overall)

The team of (from left) AC Saulong, Michael Ocampo, and Rap del Valle debated in the Yale Law School Auditorium
 
Ateneo Senior High School
 
Paco Blanco (ABM/11-Borgia)- eight golds, four silvers
INDIV: six golds (48th in history, 29th in Literature, 13th in Special Area, 115th in Debate, 52nd Overall, #1 in School), two silvers (53rd in challenge, 400th in writing)
TEAM: two golds (27th in debate, 42nd in collaborative writing), two silvers (87th in Challenge, #109th team overall) 
 
Raphael Estacio (GA/11-Goupil)- six golds, three silvers
INDIV: three golds (38th in history, 47th in Science, 177th in debate), two silvers (184th in special area, 203rd overall)
TEAM: three golds(19th in Debate, 51st in Scholar’s Bowl, 43rd overall team), one silver (122nd in Writing)
 
Matthew Mercado (ABM/11-Bellarmine)- five golds, five silvers
INDIV: three golds (129th in Debate, 46th in Writing, 67th Overall), two silvers (102nd in Science, 168th in Special Area)
TEAM: two golds (27th in Debate, 42nd in Writing), two silvers (87th in Challenge, #109th Team Overall) 
 
Riane Oquiza (HUMSS/11-Mayer)- four golds, three silvers
INDIV: one gold (16th in Debate), two silvers (325th in Writing, 120th Overall)
TEAM: three golds(19th in Debate, 51st in Scholar’s Bowl, 43rd Team Overall), one silver (122nd in Writing)
 
Yuan Ordenes (HUMSS/11-Hurtado)- two golds, nine silvers
INDIV: one gold (44th in Literature), six silvers (186th in Social Studies, 58th in Science, 61st in Special Area, 88th in Challenge, 310th in Debate, 185th Overall)
TEAM: one gold (49th in Debate), three silvers (76th in Challenge, 100th in Scholar’s Bowl, 77th Team Overall)
 
Carlos Pastoral (GA/11-Garnet)- three golds, four silvers
INDIV: one gold (41ST in Science), two silvers (286th in Debate, 309th in Writing)
TEAM: two golds (27th in Debate,  42nd in Writing), two silvers (87th in Challenge, 109th Team Overall) 
 
Javy Pineda (GA/11-Garnet)- three golds, three silvers
INDIV: two silvers (358th in Debate, 431st in Writing)
TEAM: three golds(19th in debate, 51st in Scholar’s Bowl,  43rd Team Overall), one silver (122nd in Writing)
 
Team awards:
Juniors Team 310 (Bejarin, Tuazon, Tiamzon)- one gold (61st in Writing), two silvers (108th in Scholar’s Bowl, 130th Overall Team
Juniors Team 311 (Caluya, Gelbolingo, Angoluan)- two golds (36th in Challenge, 42nd in Writing), two silvers (179th in Scholar’s Bowl, 133rd Team Overall)  
Juniors Team 312 (Saulong, Ocampo, Del Valle)- two silvers (58th in Challenge, 91st in Writing)
Seniors Team 676 (Tongson, Ordenes, De Leon) - one gold (49th in Debate), three silvers (76th in Challenge, 100th in Scholar’s Bowl, 77th Team Overall)
Seniors Team 677 (Mercado, Pastoral, Blanco)- two golds (27th in Debate, 42nd in Writing), two silvers (87th in Challenge, 109th Team Overall) 
Seniors Team 678 (Pineda, Estacio, Oquiza)- three golds(19th in debate, 51st in Scholar’s Bowl,  43rd Team Overall), one silver (122nd in Writing)
 
The World Scholar’s Cup Tournament of Champions consisted of the Scholar's Challenge (a written exam on the subject areas of Science, Literature, History, Social Studies, Arts & Music, and Special Area/Modern Mythologies), the Scholar's Bowl (a quiz bee on all six subjects), an on-the-spot Collaborative Essay Writing challenge, and three rounds of Team Debates. There were also social & cultural events like the Scholars' Scavenger Hunt, the Scholar’s Talent Show, the Scholar's Ball and the Cultural Fair, which gave scholars the opportunity to interact with students, coaches, and teachers from the 50 countries which participated in the WSC TOC.  There was also a talk and Q&A with Rita Mae Reese(author of The Alphabet Conspiracy ) and a College Panel where several students currently enrolled at Yale spoke about their experiences on campus and replied to questions asked by the WSC TOC participants.  

The Ateneans charmed all who visited the Philippines/Ateneo booth at the Cultural Fair held in the ballroom of Omni Hotel
 
All students participating in WSC are called “scholars” and are categorized into the Junior (below 15 years old) and Senior (15 years old and above) divisions. Since some AJHS teams’ compositions included students who were 15 or older, these teams were entered in the Senior division. As such, some of the younger AJHS Debaters had the additional challenge of facing students much older than them. Nevertheless, the Ateneans excelled and still brought honor to both the Ateneo and the Philippines on the international stage.

The boys trained with Mr. Joel Falgui and were supported by the JHS and SHS administrations, the Computer subject area, and Educational Media Center.   

The AJHS and ASHS debaters wish to extend their thanks and gratitude to Mrs. Ria Arespacochaga, Mrs. Jennifer Concepcion, Mr. Ron Capinding, Mr. Noel Miranda, Mr. BA Coballes, Mrs. Elsa Frago, Ms. Kristine Valdellon, and most especially to Dr. Carmela C. Oracion for supporting the boys in this life-changing experience.
 
Gratitude is also extended to Cocolife, CEP Design and Construction, IGROS Marketing Corporation, Liz Uy Styling Co. Incorporated and Benjamin Yap of Unilab for magnanimously sponsoring the Ateneo contingent’s participation in Yale University’s World Scholar’s Cup Tournament of Champions. Last but not least, the Ateneo delegation also thanks the Department of Tourism for the eye-catching materials it provided as decorations and giveaways for Ateneo’s “Visit the Philippines” booth during the Cultural Fair.