Dr. Emiliano Hudtohan

Educator, Business Writer, Industry Expert and Entrepreneur

Mabuhay, adieu, salamat


Green Light

Manila Standard Today

December 29, 2014


I turned 70 this year. It means permanent retirement at of De La Salle University. It also signals my final article in Manila Standard Toel-nino-que-no-sabia-decir-adiosday. To my readers, colleagues, students, friends, the Brothers; to Dr. Dennis Berino and MOD chair Pia Manalastas, my DLSU MST editors; and to Ray S. Enano, Business editor of Manila Standard Today I say, “Mabuhay, adieu and salamat”.


Filipino mabuhay carries an Arabic ‘hay’ for life, and the Arabic alphabet ‘ya’ is also used and spelled as “y” or “I”. Thus, in Hiligaynon, my regional dialect, buhay is buhi.

Mabuhi ang mga Brothers of La Salle Bacolod [1957-1961): Br. Francis Cody, Br. Richard, Br. Dominic Fournier, Br. Richard, Br. Felix Masson, Br. Gat Louie, Br. Alexis, Br. Sixto Orosa, Br. Andrew Gonzalez and Br. Alonzo del Callar. My Lasallian life began with them in grade school and high school.

Through Br. Francis, I became a member of the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools [1961-78]. And at De La Salle University [1961-73], I earned my bachelor and master’s degrees. Thereafter I held various roles as teacher, director and principal at De La Salle Taft, Greenhills, Lipa and Iligan [1967-78].

Mabuhay to my religious formateurs: Director Br. Dominic, Sub-director Br. Peter Graves, Fr. Mario, SJ, and Fr. McCarthy, SJ; co-aspirants: Br. Rolando Dizon, Br. Ceci Hojilla, Br. Crisanto Moreno, Br. Manny Hilado, Br. Philip Belzunce, Br. Ricardo Pijuan, Br. Gus Boquer, Br. Victor Ordonez, and Br. Louie Zaragosa. Mabuhay to Scholasticate Director Br. Justin Lucian and Sub-director Br. John Burns, Fr. Cornelius Hulsbusch and Fr. Pat Lim; my first community confreres Br. Raymund Bronowicz, Br. Rafael Donato, Br. Vernon Mabile, Br. Gregory Refuerzo and Br. Joseph Lapp at De La Salle Lipa.

Mabuhay to Br. Visitor Victor Franco, DLSU President Gabriel Connon, and Br. Councilor General John Johnston who encouraged me to persevere in travelling the highroad of Brotherhood before I officially left the Institute May 31, 1978.


Goodbye in French is adieu, a compound of preposition ‘a’ [to] and ‘dieu’ [God]; it is much closer to Filipino and Spanish adios. When invoked, it means, “I commend you to God.” It suggests that a social interaction is momentarily terminated but a thread of spiritual relationship remains.

My departure from the Institute in May 1978 was not a goodbye. It was a French “au revoir” [see you again] because in 1985 I returned to DLSU to pursue a doctorate in guidance and counselling. Then, I taught in the College of Education [1988-90]. My interlude at DLSU was interrupted for 14 years when I joined Metrobank because I was doing corporate management training on weekends nationwide. Upon retirement in 2003, I came to see Br. William Garvey who convinced me to finish my doctorate under the tutelage of Br. Andrew Gonzalez, FSC.

My au revoir interlude reconnected me to the Brothers once more.

My Lasallian journey was coming to a full circle. In 2005, the broadsheet advertisement of De La Salle Professional Schools, Inc. led me to an interview with Dean Philip Juico at La Salle Greenhills. After almost 3 decades, I saw the campus where I was trained in 1961 and Provincialate House where I stepped out in 1978. With Dr. Ben Teehankee, affirming my place in the ethics and CSR courses, I was accepted as faculty of DLS PSI.

I say au revoir to my DLSU colleagues: Marissa Marasigan, Vixie Tibon, Raymund Habaradas, Liberty Nolasco, Gett Que, Jimmy Cempron, Leah Macatangay, Rachel Quero, Ted Ocampo, Real So, Pinky Asis Castro, Nes Nisperos, Denver Daradar, Joseph Pangilinan, Jean Maligaya, John See, Fe Baluran, Carmelita Clerigo, Grace Cardino, Lorie and Denice Lopez, Lorie Mojica, and Remy Tamaca.


In Arabic, the word “salamat” is used to express be safe and convey the meaning of welcome and the word salam means hello. In Malaysia, selamat spelled differently means thank you, like salamat in Philippines. A Muslim sociologist told me that salamat came from sa Allah, meaning one is blessed in the name of Allah.

Salamat to Br. Counselor General Benildo Feliciano who blessed by departure from the Institute and wished me success as I venture into the world ‘outside’; to Dr. Victor Gamboa for connecting with the USAID integrated area development in Bicol; Br. James Ebner, theologian, for encouraging me write because it is fun; to Br. Francis Garvey and Br. Andrew Gonzalez for my doctorate in religious and values formation; and to Dr. Dean Philip Juico for my academic engagement with the De La Salle Professional School, Inc.

Full circle

I must thank Dr. Debbie Edralin and MOD chair Pia Manalastas for my SHURMAN course where I met Alexandra Estanislao Pena the 2nd term of SY 2014-15. She is the daughter of Arthur Pena, my student at La Salle Iligan in 1976. Arthur’s family was a second family to the Brothers then because his mom, Angie, catered the meals of the Brothers (Br. Bob Schieler, Br. Bernie Oca and Br. Emilio Villarosa). On holidays and weekends we had meals at their residence.

After almost 4 decades, through Alex, I was reunited with Arthur [children Alex, Lorenzo and Rafael] and George [spouse Rosario and son George Aaron, DLSU ECE] on December 14, 2014. We reviewed four decades around the banquet of food and drink that filled spirit with Lasallian fellowship and brotherhood in four hours.

Interestingly, Arthur in 1980, as Rotary exchange student, studied in USA and was reunited with Br. Bob Shieler, FSC [now superior general] as he was one of the Brothers his family shared meals with.

This year, in July, Br. Broughton told me Br. Robert Shieler, FSC was elected superior general; in August I wrote an article on Br. Bob; I read it in class and Alex Pena informed me her dad studied in Iligan and personally knew Br. Bob; and In December Dr. Ginny Santiago invited me to teach at La Salle University Ozamiz, an hour and half by land from Iligan City.

More in life

There are no accidents. Iligan was my last tour of duty prior to me leaving the Institute. As I leave DLSU, I am being reconnected to Mindanao, where I left my Lasallian mission in 1978.

The cycle and the circle of life induce me to say Mabuhay, Adieu, and Salamat because gratitude, as Marci Shimoff puts it, is absolutely the way to bring more into our Life.

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