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S.Y. 2015-2016, BS Accountancy

My parents are farmers of rice and corn on land they do not own, so they do not receive a regular income. Our usual meals were bananas, corn, or cassava, depending on the season. On top of these, I have a younger sister born with hydrocephalus, and we did not have enough money to get the proper medical attention and the medicine she needed.

Despite our lack of finances, I believed that education is the way out of poverty. I became a working student in college, reporting to the administrative office during my vacant hours to do office work or cleaning jobs and run errands. I also drove a passenger motor after class and removed coconut husks with my bare hands, earning 20 PHP for every hundred coconuts. I worked so hard because I was not only supporting myself, but also helping provide for my family’s daily needs.

In my first year in college, I had to travel for two hours to school every day and was constantly hungry in class. Because we had no money to buy the books I needed for school, I studied using books from the library. We also had no electricity, so I used the cellphone light to study at home.

I have been so used to having an empty stomach that I could no longer feel hunger. Stomach pain was already normal to me. Every day, I would go home exhausted from juggling school and work. Living in a boarding house near the school was not an option for me because it’s an additional expense. I also wanted to go home so I can look after my sister and make sure that she is all right. Because she cannot take care of herself, the members of my family always took turns to feed her and look after her. Life was really difficult for me, but my sister’s condition and the dream of giving my family a better future kept me going.

In my second year in college, a classmate invited me to apply for a Real LIFE scholarship. More than the financial assistance, what I appreciated most about being a Real LIFE scholar was having renewed hope.

I am now a Certified Public Accountant, and I make sure that my parents will no longer have to work since they are already getting old. I want to provide everything they need and give them a good life. I also really want to bring my sister to the hospital and give her all the medical attention she needs. I hope that someday I can even pursue a law degree to become a CPA lawyer.



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