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Three Friends Become Grab Riders Together, Graduate from College Together

Three friends become Grab riders together to support themselves through school – and they inspired everyone after they also graduated from college together. Some netizens even called them as “barkada goals” because they helped each other succeed in life together.

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Three Friends Work Hard to Graduate from College

While there are young people who blame their parents, relatives, and even society because they’re unable to go to school due to financial restrictions, there are also those who strive hard to find a job, juggle work with their studies, to succeed in life.

Take for example three friends Kendrick De Guzman, Mark Lawrence Rance, and Gilrex Servidad Jr. They decided to become Grab riders to support themselves through college – and managed to graduate together as good friends with a degree in Criminology.

three friends
Photo credit: Philippine Star

It all started with Kendrick who began working as a food delivery rider in 2018.

He was in first-year college when he found this job.

When the pandemic hit, Kendrick encouraged his two friends to work with him. So, Mark and Gilrex began working as food delivery riders in April 2020.

As other working students will tell you, it’s difficult to juggle work with studies. But these three friends never thought about quitting.

Need pang-tuition, pang tustos sa pang araw-araw. Kasi po may family na rin po kasi ako so ‘yun kaya ‘yun din po ang nag-inspire sa akin para rin po mag-grab na rin po,” Mark explained.

There were even times when they were unable to get enough sleep due to the demands of their job and school work. But they plodded on.

So bumabyahe kami ng after class, aalis kami sa bahay ng alas dose, ang uwi na rin namin niyan 12. So dalawang oras lang kami nakakatulog niyan. So papasok kami minsan, inaantok kami ganyan,” Gilrex narrated.

Pero even though na inaantok kami, hindi namin pinapabayaan ‘yung pag-aaral namin. A-absent lang kami halimbawa mag-eexam, ‘yun, medyo nagkakapos po kami sa review.

Thanks to their determination, the three graduated together from the Philippine College of Criminology with degree in BS Criminology last July 2022.

three friends
Photo credit: Philippine Star

They’re now planning to take the Criminology board exams in December and hope to join the country’s police force.

Jobs for Criminology Graduates in the Philippines

There are plenty of opportunities for criminology graduates in the Philippines, with further training or studies:

  • Police officer
  • Jail officer
  • Forensics officer
  • Court peace officer
  • Discipline officer
  • Investigator

Inspiring

Blind Man Reaches Top of Mt. Apo, the Country’s Highest Peak

A blind man reaches the top of Mt. Apo, known as the country’s highest peak. His achievement amazed netizens who were surprised that this man, who couldn’t even see, was able to overcome the difficult trails to reach the mountain’s peak.

Blind Man Conquers Mt. Apo

Climbing a mountain is no easy feat, especially those that are known for their height and treacherous trails.

Mt. Apo is one of these mountains.

blind man
Photo credit: Kol Angel Pandoy

The mountain’s actual height differs, depending on the sources. But the marker on the top of the mountain puts it at 3,142.79 m (10,311.0 ft). Other sources put it at a height of 2,954 meters above sea level (9692 ft).

What the exact height might be, the mountain stands stately and remains the Philippines’ highest peak. Many avid climbers who have gone to several mountains in the country said that this is really one of the most difficult to climb.

blind man
Photo credit: Kol Angel Pandoy
blind man
Photo credit: Kol Angel Pandoy

Yet Bennie Cambang, a 39-year-old blind man, was able to reach its peak!

His story went viral after it was shared by his guide, Angel Pandoy, who was also quite impressed with what he was able to achieve.

blind man
Photo credit: Kol Angel Pandoy
blind man
Photo credit: Kol Angel Pandoy

As his guide, masasabi ko pong napakatapang niya and impressive,” Angel shared.

Napakaraming beses ko po siyang tinanong kong kaya niya, pero ang sagot niya depende kung saan sya mauubosan ng lakas at saka siya bababa, pero suprisingly naabot po niya ang tuktok ng Apo.

Tied to each for safety, the duo reached the peak through the Sta. Cruz Back Trail (Boulder Face).

blind man
Photo credit: Kol Angel Pandoy
blind man
Photo credit: Kol Angel Pandoy

Everyone also expressed amazement that this blind man was even barefoot when he climbed up the mountain, although this is probably something to his advantage. Since he’s blind, he has to rely on other body parts to “see” the world.

What are the Trails to Mt. Apo’s Peak?

blind man
Photo credit: Kol Angel Pandoy
blind man
Photo credit: Kol Angel Pandoy

According to Mt. Apo Adventures, there are four well-established trails to the top of the mountain:

  • The Sta. Cruz Back Trail (Boulder Face) or Sibulan-Mt. Apo Peak Trail is the shortest trail at 13.7 km, but it’s also a technical trail that passes through a jungle
  • The Ko-ong Kidapawan Trail covers around 19 km and passes through a jungle, river, and grassland before reaching the peak
  • The Kapatagan Trail in Digos, Davao del Sur, is adjacent to the Sibulan trail but is slightly longer by around 2 km and features some obstacles along the way
  • The Tamayong Trail is the longest and toughest, especially because it passes through Mt. Talomo Peak before heading to Mt. Apo
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Inspiring

Former OFW Finds Success as VA in the Philippines after Difficulties in the UAE

A former OFW finds success as VA (virtual assistant) in the Philippines, years after experiencing struggles and difficulties while working in the UAE (United Arab Emirates).

Former OFW Finds Success as VA

So many Filipinos believe that success in life and getting rich or financially stable can only happen if you find a job abroad.

In fact, it is the primary goal of many Filipinos to work abroad so they can provide a better life for their families.

That’s exactly what Paolo Solomon thought when he was younger.

Former OFW
Photo credit: Paolo Solomon

He shared that he grew up in a poor family and had to sell pandesal from a tita’s bakery for his allowance in school. Starting when he was just 14 years old, he would wake up early to start selling at 5AM, allowing him time to earn before his classes start, usually at around 8AM.

His father was in charge of paying for his tuition fee, but his world turned upside down when he lost his dad. He was just 17 years old at the time.

Becoming the family’s breadwinner at such a young age, he had to quit school. He worked at Jollibee, then at a department store where he became a full-time employee. Yet he also wished to work abroad.

Former OFW
Photo credit: Paolo Solomon

After experiencing so many financial struggles and anxiety as breadwinner, he decided to apply abroad – and was luckily accepted. At just 21 years old, he’s the youngest of the batch.

Sadly, he was put down by so many people because he wasn’t able to graduate from college. So many people discouraged him from leaving his job in the Philippines to work abroad.

And when he reached the UAE, though his employers were awesome and he was chosen to serve the CEO, he experienced bullying from his co-workers and roommates.

Former OFW
Photo credit: Paolo Solomon

He thought this would be his ticket to success but he ended up suffering a mental breakdown and was diagnosed with clinical depression and bipolar disorder. He got deported.

But his story didn’t stop there. When he finally recovered, he found a job as VA (virtual assistant). The work-from-home job helped him grow his copywriting career and open his own VA agency.

Today, he’s enjoying the fruits of his success and is finally able to buy a house for his family, something he had always dreamed of when he wanted to work abroad.

I thank God na he blessed me to work as a freelancer. God use my VA work para maabot ko yung mga goals ko,” he shared, while posting photos of their new home on Facebook community, Home Buddies.

Pwede pala na ibless ka ni Lord sa di mo inaasahang way. He make all things work together for our good. Now I’m still pursuing my dreams na kasama ko family ko.

Former OFW
Photo credit: Paolo Solomon
Former OFW
Photo credit: Paolo Solomon

Congratulations po!

What’s the Work of a VA?

A VA (virtual assistant) is a remote worker (usually hired as a part-time freelancer) who offers administrative support for a business. They usually do tasks that are typically done by an executive assistant, including making phone calls, scheduling appointments, organizing emails, or arranging travel.

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Inspiring

Student Graduates Cum Laude, Ranks #7 in Board Exams Even after Shifting 3x

A student graduates cum laude and ranks #7 in the board exams even after shifting courses 3x. Her inspiring story went viral, especially because many students have also experienced shifting courses for various reasons.

Student Graduates Cum Laude Even after Shifting 3x

Graduating cum laude can be difficult for many students, especially if they needed to shift to a different course. It becomes harder when the student shifts to other courses more than once.

After all, the school usually has certain rules imposed on who can qualify to graduate with Latin honors.

It’s a good thing that Christine Seraspe Chicano was still able to graduate cum laude despite shifting three times.

student graduates cum laude
Photo credit: PEP

Aside from that, she also managed to rank #7 in the board exams; although the board exam isn’t for the undergrad course she first graduated from.

Instead, it’s the Environmental Planner Licensure Examination that she took after completing her Master of Arts in Urban and Regional Planning.

This inspiring young lady completed both her undergrad (Bachelor of Science in Business Administration) and master’s degree in UP (University of the Philippines).

Finding Her Niche

Although she graduated with a BS Business Administration degree, it wasn’t Chicano’s first choice.

She told PEP that she first enrolled in BS Mathematics.

When she failed in a major subject, she decided to shift to BS Business Administration and Accountancy. This course is closer to her parents’ wish for her to become a CPA lawyer.

She didn’t fail, but she also didn’t reach the retention grade.

student graduates cum laude
Photo credit: PEP

Gusto ko mang sundin yung mga pangarap para sa akin ng mga magulang ko, kung mas makakasama naman ito sa health ko o feel ko ay hindi worth it yung stress, hindi ko na pinipilit,” she explained.

Pero siyempre, hindi mawawala yung feeling na nagkulang ako dahil hindi ko natupad yung pangarap nila para sa akin.

So, she shifted to BS Business Administration.

Kahit tatlong beses akong nag-shift nung college, naka-graduate pa rin ako on time at cum laude pa. Nag-overload kasi ako ng mga subjects para makahabol,” she shared.

Pero bumawi pa rin sa huli since nagsikap talaga akong mag-aral. Ayoko kasing bigyan ng sakit ng ulo mga magulang ko lalo na’t sakitin pa ang tatay ko.

Becoming an Urban Planner

After experiencing the difficulties of daily commute, especially as a woman, she thought of turning into a profession that can help improve commuting and commuters’ lives.

student graduates cum laude
Photo credit: PEP

So, she took her Master of Arts in Urban and Regional Planning. It’s with this course that she ranked #7 in the board exams.

What’s an Urban Planner?

An urban planner is a professional who makes plans and programs to develop land to help create communities and revitalize physical facilities in towns, cities, and metropolitan areas, while taking population growth into consideration.

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