There are different rites and ceremonies participated in by all cadets of the Philippine Military Academy. It starts right from the very first day a new cadet reports to Fort Del Pilar and ends on March Week when the cadet finally leaves the Academy as a graduate.
These rites and ceremonies are interspaced throughout a cadet's 4-year stay at the Academy and serve as important highlights in the life of a cadet.
Traditionally, April 1st has been set aside for the reception of the new cadets. This day marks the first day of a military career and the last day of their civilian lives.
On this day, the new cadets form at the Borromeo Field and take their oath of office as cadets of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.
The upperclass cadets comprising the Plebe Detail then take charge and give the new cadets a series of exercises to perform. These exercises, to include push-up, sit-up, squat thrust, jumping jacks, dash, are but a foretaste of what to expect for the next eight weeks of "Beast Barracks."
After eight long and arduous weeks of "Beast Barracks," the new cadets are now ready to be regular members of the Cadet Corps of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.
Through the Incorporation Ceremony, the new cadets now take their place in the different squads of the eight companies making up the Cadet Corps.
Where before the new cadets occupy separate barracks and are kept apart from the rest of the Corps save for the members of the Plebe Detail, now they join the rest of the Corps in all activities.
For the first time, during Incorporation Day, the new cadets (the plebes) join the rest of the Corps as they pass in review.
This Incorporation Ceremony is a meaningful ceremony since it symbolizes that the new plebes are now truly fit and worthy of being called cadets.
This ceremony remains to be one of the most touching and memorable traditions a cadet experiences in the Philippine Military Academy.
On this day, through a simple yet profoundly meaningful handshake and pat on the back by an upperclass cadet, the fourthclass ceases to be a plebe.
This is a rite of passage, the end of the numerous restrictions and difficulties that only a plebe can experience in the Academy.
As the name suggests it is a recognition that the plebe has successfully met the challenges of plebe life.
Traditionally, the 100th Nite Show signalled the 100-day countdown to graduation for the firstclass cadets.
Thus, the 100th Nite Show is presented during December to relatives, friends, and the general public.
It is a showcase of the cadets' artistic, terpsichorean and literary talents.
The 100th Nite Show, sponsored by the Dialectic Society, is supervised, managed, and participated in solely by the cadets.
This week is one of the most significant and important traditions celebrated in the Philippine Military Academy.
It represents the culmination of four exacting years of regimented training.
It is during this week that the firstclass cadets pass on the mantle of leadership to the incoming firstclass cadets in moving and impressive ceremonies which form part of the graduation parade.
The graduation week ends with the Graduation Exercises with the President of the Philippines and the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines as the guest of honor and speaker.
The Ring Hop is a firstclass cadet dance and ceremony which takes place during Graduation Week.
In this ceremony, the person closest to the heart of the cadet slips on the cadet's finger the class ring or what is called the bull ring ... and usually, it is a mother or a sweetheart who is asked to do this.
In turn, the cadet gives the mini ring, a smaller version of the bull ring to his partner. This ritual is performed by having each couple go through a giant replica of the class ring which is mounted on an elevated platform at the front of the ballroom.
Within this ring, the cadet unties a colored ribbon placed around the neck of the female partner which is used to hold the bull ring like a pendant.
After rings are exchanged a kiss, a hug, or a handshake is made to complete the ceremony. For the Class of 1997, traditions will have to be broken. This time the graduating female cadets will probably ask a father or a boyfriend to participate in the ritual.
The graduation hop is the counterpart of the graduation ball in civilian universities.
This is the last hop a firstclassman experiences as a cadet. It is often a strictly formal ball and invited officers of the Armed Forces come in gala uniforms complete with their respective military medals and decorations.
Civilians often come in tuxedos with the ladies appropriately attired in their formal evening wear.