The Basics You Need

to Know About the

Universities Inside Manila

by Inside Manila Contributor, October 22, 2019 12:23pm

Art by Ahl Mirambel


The Basics You Need to Know About the Universities Inside Manila

by Inside Manila Contributor, October 22, 2019 12:23pm
Art by Ahl Mirambel

With more than a hundred universities, Metro Manila is indeed the bastion of higher education in the Philippines. It is only fitting for graduating senior high school students to look for the school best fit for their chosen college courses. While weighing the pros and cons, here are five things about universities in Manila that may fascinate and even help you choose the right schools:

Our national hero attended both UST and Ateneo.

The country’s national hero Jose Rizal obtained a land surveyor assessor’s degree in Ateneo and took up a preparatory course in law in UST before shifting to medical school. He specialized in ophthalmology, upon learning that his mother was going blind.

As we all know, Dr. Rizal ended up being more known for his writings. So instead of struggling to fit into one university title, why not do two (or three)?

There are several University Belts

The term “university belt” is generically given to a specific area or streets with neighboring colleges. The oldest and largest in Metro Manila can be found within Quiapo, San Miguel, Sta. Cruz, and Sampaloc. However, it also technically includes the western end of España Boulevard, Nicanor B. Reyes Street (formerly Morayta), the eastern end of Recto Avenue, Legarda Street, Mendiola Street, and the different side streets

From this area alone, the following schools can be found: Arellano University, Centro Escolar University, Far Eastern University, La Consolacion College Manila, Manila Business College, Philippine College of Criminology, Polytechnic University of the Philippines, Saint Jude College, San Beda University, University of the East, and the University of Santo Tomas.

Institutions along Taft Avenue from Ermita to Malate are also considered part of the university belt, which includes Adamson University,De La Salle University, Philippine Normal University,St. Paul University, Universidad de Manila, and University of the Philippines Manila, to name a few.

UST is the oldest active university in Asia

University of Santo Tomas’ (UST) original name was Colegio de Nuestra Señora del Santisimo Rosario and was renamed Colegio de Santo Tomas, after its patron saint, Thomas Aquinas in 1625. UST is the biggest Catholic university in the country, and takes pride in multiple traditions following the Catholic faith.

UP and Ateneo share eagles as symbols

UPand Ateneo both bear an eagle in its logo, symbolizing the mighty species’ power. There had been stories that it’s actually a parrot in the UP logo, but these rumors have long since been dispelled. UP, formerly known as the American University of the Philippines, was established by the American colonial government and it only made sense for them to use an eagle in its logo.

The ‘Big Four’ Rankings

Four universities in the Philippines ranked in the Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) World University Rankings, an annual publication of university rankings all over the world. These schools are: University of the Philippines (384th), Ateneo de Manila University (651-700th), De La Salle University, and the University of Santo Tomas (both at 801-1000th).

Knowing these tidbits might help you realize the right school for you. And while our universities may not be on top of the global education game, we take pride in their culture, history, and diversity. Take a peek into the U-belt life here.

Written by: Patz Biliran of; See original article here. is your go-to student portal for making smarter decisions about education to employment. For more information, visit and

*Edits have been made by Inside Manila Editors


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