MANILA—Two of the Philippines’ top universities displayed tributes to the late former President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III after his passing Thursday.
Ateneo de Manila University and De La Salle University also put out eulogies for Aquino, alongside other universities that recalled their ties with him.
Yellow and black ribbons tied together adorned the Ateneo fence facing Katipunan Avenue in Quezon City.
Aquino studied at the Jesuit-run university from elementary to college, finishing a Bachelor of Arts major in economics degree in 1981.
Calling him a “true-blue Atenean”, university president Roberto Yap SJ recalled how Aquino called on his fellow alumni to affect change in society during a 2016 graduation speech.
“Despite the ups and downs of his term, he will be remembered as a President who showed our nation and the world how leadership with competence, conscience, compassion, and commitment can bring about a marked difference in the lives of millions of people,” Yap said in a statement.
“[Aquino] will also be remembered for representing the Philippines with honor and dignity, elevating our country's status on the world stage.”
Aquino will "return" to the Ateneo campus on Friday for a one-day public viewing of the urn containing his cremated remains.
It will be brought to the Church of the Gesu in the morning and will be open for viewing from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
A funeral mass will also be held there Saturday, according to Aquino’s sister Kris.
La Salle, meanwhile, lit the front of its St. La Salle Hall in Taft Avenue, Manila to salute the late president.
The hall was bathed with blue, yellow, and red lights representing the national colors.
Vertical yellow and black cloths also hung on sections of the facade.
In a social media post, La Salle said it was one with the nation in mourning Aquino’s death and made the tribute “in honor of [his] service to the Filipino people.”
Yellow has long been associated with the Aquinos.
Filipinos tied yellow ribbons throughout the country following the deaths of Aquino’s parents, Benigno Jr. in 1983 and Corazon in 2009.
University of the Philippines (UP) expressed its condolences, too, calling Aquino “a strong supporter of the higher education sector”, including UP, during his term.
UP President Danilo Concepcion said in a message that Aquino “understood the importance of high-value scientific research and innovation” in the Philippines.
"During his term, President Aquino was a strong supporter of the higher education sector, including the University of the Philippines," Concepcion said.
"He also understood the importance of high-value scientific research and innovation in the country and supported the various research initiatives within UP and collaborations between UP and the government sector."
In 2011, UP awarded Aquino an honorary law degree when he spoke at its commencement exercises in Diliman—the first time a president did so in 12 years.
University of Santo Tomas offered its prayers for Aquino, recalling his visit to its 400th anniversary celebration in 2011.
"May the former President with his legacy of humility and integrity continue to serve as an inspiration to the country's future leaders,” UST’s statement read.