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Inspiring ‘Yolanda’ Survivor Studies in the US, Jokes about Becoming “Space Doctor”

A Typhoon Yolanda survivor has now become an inspiration to many after she jokingly shared on social media about becoming a “space doctor” – though that is actually true as she is set to begin her PhD in Astronomy & Astrophysics.

She can’t even believe that the girl who had only dreamed of seeing the stars in space is now being paid to study the galaxies! Wow.

Inspiring ‘Yolanda’ Survivor To Become “Space Doctor” in the US

Hillary Diane Andales from the small town of Abuyog, Leyte, was just 5 years old when she learned that over a million Earths can fit inside our Sun.

Years later, she was even more impressed to learn about the many galaxies in the far reaches of the universe, all looking like tiny specks of dust in the sky but made up of millions of stars and planets.

Photo credit: Hillary Diane Andales

It was this sense of wonder that propelled her to dream about studying the universe – and it was an opportunity that she was able to experience when she was accepted at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). She’s now studying Physics, Astronomy and STS (Science, Technology and Society).

Her big break came after she won first place in a competition, acing over 11,000 entries and earning her $400,000 (around Php22.4 million) worth in prizes, including a college scholarship.

Photo credit: Hillary Diane Andales

What’s amazing is that she had actually placed third the previous year in the same competition – and the judges were so impressed by her contest entry that they awarded her school a state-of-the-art DNA science lab worth $100,000 (around Php5.6 million).

Andales admitted that studying her course and being away from her family were very challenging. She cried countless times over her subjects, but she managed to pull it through.

Photo credit: Hillary Diane Andales
Photo credit: Hillary Diane Andales

Now, after almost two decades of moving toward this dream, I have the privilege of getting paid to study galaxies for the next 6 years,” she shared in a Facebook post that announced her upcoming plan to pursue her PhD in Astronomy and Astrophysics at The University of Chicago.

I will (likely) spend those 5-6 years doing galactic archaeology, which involves studying the oldest stars to reconstruct the history of our home galaxy, the Milky Way,” she explained in another post.

Although she picked the University of Chicago, she was also accepted in other US universities’ PhD programs.

Photo credit: Hillary Diane Andales
Photo credit: Hillary Diane Andales
Photo credit: Hillary Diane Andales

Photo credit: Hillary Diane Andales
Photo credit: Hillary Diane Andales
Photo credit: Hillary Diane Andales

She has certainly come a long way from that little girl who dreamed about the stars in her humble hometown.

How Many Galaxies are There?

The actual number is actually unknown but it is estimated that there are between 100 and 200 billion galaxies in what scientists call as the “observable universe.” This ball-like region of the universe comprises all that can be currently observed from Earth, hence the name.


SHS Student Brings Photos of Late Parents on Graduation Day

A senior high school (SHS) student brought framed photos of her late parents on her graduation day, touching many hearts and making netizens cry.

Her story has gone viral, with many netizens cheering her on and praying for her success in life…

SHS Student Brings Photos of Late Parents on Graduation Day

Graduation day is one of the best days in a student’s life, but it’s not always the happiest for all.

Some also experience a bittersweet moment because their loved ones aren’t with them. While many are due to having OFW parents who can’t be home for the special, others are because the parents have already passed on.

SHS student Juvelyn Dela Torre Eugenio, 18, of North Cotabato made netizens cry after she carried her parents’ framed photos as she marched and posed on stage to receive her diploma.

Photo credit: Juvelyn Dela Torre Eugenio

She explained that during recognition days and other special events when she was younger, it was always her mother who would accompany her on stage.

She wants to share her success and milestones with her parents, but they’re no longer around.

They lost their father to heart failure in July 2020.

In 2022, the siblings decided to let their mother enjoy a vacation with her older children in Manila, only to discover that she was sick and already in the terminal stages of a stage 4 battle with the Big C. They lost her shortly thereafter.

Photo credit: Juvelyn Dela Torre Eugenio

Juvelyn shared that losing their parents took a toll on her mental health, especially because she had to stand as a parent to her younger brother.

On graduation day, she vowed that she wouldn’t cry despite seeing all the other students with their parents.

But she broke down on stage when a concerned teacher asked her about her parents and offered words of consolation after she showed her their photos.

Despite the challenges, Juvelyn plans on continuing her journey as she dreams of becoming a lawyer someday.

Photo credit: Juvelyn Dela Torre Eugenio

How to Become a Lawyer in the Philippines

  1. Complete a 4-year Bachelor’s Degree in Arts or Sciences.
  2. Pass the PhiLSAT (Philippine Law School Admission Test)
  3. Complete law school.
  4. Complete the law internship.
  5. Pass the bar exams.

Did you know that lawyers in PAO (Public Attorney’s Office) with an entry-level position (Public Attorney I) earn a basic salary of Php95,000 (salary grade 25)?

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Elementary Students Praised for Playing “One Day” Using Ukuleles

Elementary students at a school in Mindanao earned praise online after playing “One Day” using their ukuleles for a presentation.

Many netizens were impressed about their skills, with some commenting that it’s a difficult piece to play on a ukulele, yet most of them nailed it! Wow.

Elementary Students Play “One Day” Using Their Ukuleles

A lot of people these days have this mistaken notion that kids are only fond of using cellphones and no longer enjoy playing with traditional toys or learning how to use a traditional musical instrument – because you can find lots of options for those online or with their phones.

But a group of students from Dipolog Pilot Demonstration School impressed netizens with their skills in playing the ukulele as they presented “One Day” for the school’s 100-year celebration.

Seated on the steps of their school, the kids played the musical instruments seamlessly, except for a few issues.

Photo credit: Kung Taga-Oroquieta City Ka

And while some netizens pointed out that one of the kids appear to be struggling with the proper chords and kept shifting around during the entire performance, the overall presentation is still quite impressive!

Many netizens even commented on the post of the Facebook page “Kung Taga-Oroquieta City Ka” that they were deeply touched by the kids’ presentation and were crying while watching. Awww.

A lot also praised the coaches who made this possible – and others felt proud of the children even if they had no idea who these little ones are.

It’s also quite impressive to see that the class had so many ukuleles. It is unknown whether the kids own the musical instruments or if the school provided them, but what’s clear is that their presentation is truly admirable.

What’s a Ukulele?

A ukulele is a type of string musical instrument that’s smaller than a guitar. It usually has nylon strings as opposed to the metal used in standard guitars.

The instrument also has four strings but isn’t considered a “kid’s instrument” only. Instead, it can be played by kids and adults alike.

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Proud Vendor Dad Offers Free Taho after Daughter Passes Board Exams for Teachers

One proud vendor dad offered free taho for everyone when his daughter passed the LET (Licensure Examination for Teachers).

Netizens were even more impressed to learn that the young lady passed after doing a self-review.

Truly amazing, right?

Vendor Offers Free Taho after Daughter Passes Teacher’s Board

Passing the board exams is truly a milestone that everyone can be proud of – and most of the time, the parents are their children’s proudest cheerleaders!

Of course, spouses and kids also feel the same thing. For example, a taxi driver offered free rides after his wife passed the LET.

Photo credit: Rose Torallo

The proud parents of a student who passed that same LET are also offering free taho to their customers.

Bobby and Rose Torallo happily got a tarpaulin up to celebrate the success of their daughter, Rosebel Cielo Torallo. The young woman had graduated cum laude from Baao Community College in Baao, Camarines Sur.

Photo credit: Rose Torallo
Photo credit: Rose Torallo

Apparently, based on her mom’s post on Facebook, she had also self-reviewed for the licensure exams – and this made her success even sweeter for the family.

In the post of her mom, Rose, it showed that the family’s main source of income is from selling taho. It was through this that the parents were able to send their kids to school.

Photo credit: Rose Torallo

Rose lamented that there were times when people looked down on their because they are “just” taho vendors.

Thankfully, the family didn’t mind what these people are saying. Instead, they persevered and put their faith in God.

She thanked all her kids for cooperating and striving hard to succeed in their studies even if their parents are only supporting them by selling taho.

Photo credit: Rose Torallo

How to Celebrate Passing the Board Exams

There are many ways to celebrate passing the board the exams. Some of these are:

  • Throwing a party
  • Buying cake
  • Going on a trip
  • Treating your family, friends, or even strangers to something (such as a free rides from taxi drivers or free taho from vendors)
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