LOOK: Venus Raj flaunts U.P. 'Sablay' graduation photo for master's degree

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 9) — Miss Universe 2010 runner-up Venus Raj will don a sash this June, but it won't be for a beauty pageant.

Raj is among the iskolars ng bayan (scholars of the nation) graduating this year from the University of the Philippines (U.P.), the country's premier state university.

She finishes with a master's degree in community development from U.P. Diliman. She got her undergraduate degree in journalism from Bicol University, finishing cum laude.

In a June 8 Instagram post, Raj shared her official graduation photo donning U.P.'s "Sablay," a sash that forms part of the university's official graduation attire and is worn over cream Filipiniana garb.


"Sa lahat ng magsisipagtapos [For all those graduating], let us still consider ourselves students of this life," Raj said in her post. "Never stop learning. When we stop learning, we stop growing. There are far more lessons that we have to discover. Don't be afraid of the process, God is with you."

In another Instagram post, Raj showed a photo of her giving her bound thesis to her professors.


"I was at the verge of quitting while writing my thesis," she said. "But God's encouragement, grace, and assurance sustained me along this process. To those who are still writing their thesis, kaya niyo yan [you can do it]!!! Work hard, as if it all depends on you. But pray harder, as if you have not worked at all."

What is a 'Sablay'?

The Sablay carries U.P.'s official colors, maroon and green, with yellow-gold highlights representing the university's high standards of values and excellence, according to the U.P. Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research and Development.

The Sablay also has letters originating from the indigenous alphabet baybayin that spell "U" and "P."

At the graduation ceremony, the Sablay is initially worn over the right shoulder. It is then moved to the left shoulder once the candidate officially graduates.

U.P. was again named the best university in the country, according to the Quacquarelli Symonds World University Rankings 2018 released on June 8.

Read: UP ranking climbs; Ateneo, UST slip in QS World Rankings 2018

Among 959 universities surveyed worldwide, the report said U.P. climbed seven spots to 367.