Dear UP Pep Squad,

I hope you are not too heartbroken by your defeat, if you can even call it that.

We UP non-athletes can never know how much effort, time, and sacrifice it takes to become as good as you. But we see it in every toss, every backflip, and every pyramid that you guys execute.

We also saw the disappointment in your faces when we lost to NU (who put on a good show). 

For us, the UP community, you guys are the real winners. I’m not just saying this as an “aww-it’s-ok-there’s-always-next-year” statement. I’m saying this as someone who sees your bold effort of including activism into your routine.

A lot of people from the rival schools are making fun of you for bringing the LGBT and Women’s advocacy into cheer dance. I’ve read the tweets saying “cheerdance ito, hindi rally”. But really, apart from you guys, who else can do that? 

Because of you, each Filipino who watches the show (and the unavoidable YouTube uploads) will see that the State University advocates equality.

The LGBT community in the Philippines will find strength in the fact that the premier university respects them enough to include their cause in their cheer dance routine.

Most importantly, the kids who watch the show will be empowered with the knowledge that girls can lift boys and manly boys can dance to Beyonce. 

Your routine was unique, difficult, and significant. It passes on a message, and unlike the other routines, it will be talked about until next year and beyond.

NU may have won the title (deservedly so), but for every person who got your message, you still win.