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Street vendor and tricycle driver's son, now a chemical engineering graduate; grateful to scholarships

by Bernie V. Franco
Jun 2, 2022
joshua mahilum
Meet Joshua Mahilum, Chemical Engineering graduate mula sa University of St. La Salle sa Bacolod City, isang private university. Tricycle driver ang ama at street vendor ang ina. Achiever si Joshua at nakakuha ng scholarships.
PHOTO/S: Facebook (Joshua Mahilum)

Anak man ng isang street vendor at tricycle driver, nakapagtapos si Joshua Mahilum kasama ang mga rich kids ng Bacolod.

"God works in mysterious ways," sabi sa bahagi ng post ni Joshua, kung saan ibinahagi niya ang kanyang success story. Naikuwento rin niya ito sa ilang mga interviews.

Pinagtrabahuhang mabuti ni Joshua na maging scholar hanggang sa makapagtapos siya ng Chemical Engineering sa University of St. La Salle-Bacolod City nitong May 2022.

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ACHIEVER SINCE A CHILD

Ayon sa Facebook post ni Joshua noong May 31, consistent honor student siya simula pa noong elementary.

“Always the one with the medals and ribbons, always one of the front sitters,” aniya sa kanyang post.

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Nagtapos siya bilang salutatorian sa Vista Alegre-Granada Relocation Elementary School.

Siya ay Top 20 with High Honors din sa senior high school sa Liceo De La Salle SHS (Senior High School), Bacolod City.

Ang Liceo ay ang pre-college school ng University of St. La Salle-Bacolod City.

“As of today, I was able to acquire more or less 30 medals, 2 trophies, and hundreds of certificates.”

Hindi mumurahin ang tuition sa Liceo De La Salle. Hindi nga raw inakala ni Joshua noon na papasok siya sa nasabing school.

Pero inudyok siya ng kanyang ina.

“La Salle?! I was hesitant at first because first and foremost, it is very very expensive," sabi niya sa post.

“'And I don't know how to interact with 'rich kids,' I told myself and my mother.

“But my mother was really persistent and made it possible.”

Nag-apply siya para maging scholar sa unibersidad, at sumailalim sa “rigorous selection process.”

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Sa isa sa interviews, tinanong siya kung ano ang pinakamahalagang katangian dapat ng isang scholar.

Sagot daw ni Joshua: “Attitude. Because intelligence, talents, and skills are nothing without attitude and good manners."

Makalipas ang apat na araw, natanggap siya bilang full scholar sa Liceo De La Salle SHS.

“For 2 years, I only paid 2 pesos for the printing of the form before every exam (This still makes me cry. God is really good.).”

DOST SCHOLARSHIP

Pero naisip din ni Joshua, maipagpapatuloy kaya niya ang kanyang college studies?

Isang araw, habang siya ay nasa senior high school, hinimok si Joshua ng mga kaklase na tumungo sa Department of Science and Technology (DOST) office.

Mag-a-apply sila ng scholarship para sa kolehiyo.

Humiram pa si Joshua ng PHP200 sa kaklase para makapagsumite ng application for scholarship.

Kumuha ng exam si Joshua at pumasa para maging scholar.

Kaya niya nasabing "God works in mysterious ways," dahil kung hindi siya natiyempuhan noon ng mga kaklase, hindi siya nakapag-submit ng application for scholarship.

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“All of this only made sense now how God has been moving since that time.

“If it wasn’t for that moment, I wouldn’t be able to have a DOST scholarship.”

Pero kalahati lamang ng tuition ni Joshua ang sagot ng government agency. Kailangang bayaran ni Joshua ang kalahati ng kanyang matrikula.

Lumapit ang kanyang ina sa Admissions and Scholarships Administrative Office sa Bacolod.

Kumuha ng exam si Joshua at pumasa para maging scholar. May sasagot na ng kalahati ng kanyang tuition.

Nakabili siya ng second-hand laptop para may magamit sa pag-aaral.

“Before this I would usually stay up until 1AM in a computer shop a few miles away from our house just to finish my reports,” post ni Joshua.

Malaking tulong din daw ang monthly allowance mula sa DOST para sa kanyang school expenses at pandagdag sa kita ng tindahan ng ina.

Nito lamang May 26, 2022, ipinost ni Joshua ang larawan niya hawak ang isang certificate, Most Outstanding Student in Chemical Engineering, mula sa College of Engineering and Technology ng University of St. La Salle.

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joshua mahilum

BENEFICIARY OF SCHOLARSHIPS

Sabi pa ni Joshua, siya ang patunay na kayang makaangat sa buhay ng mahirap hangga’t may oportunidad.

“My story as a beneficiary of several scholarships is a testament that yes, definitely, there is a way. There is hope," sabi niya.

“You can, even if you are poor, and that your situation now is temporary.”

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Pero may nais idagdag si Joshua sa kasabihang, "Hindi hadlang ang kahirapan para makapagtapos ng pag-aaral."

Sabi niya, "Poverty is not a hindrance to success AS LONG AS THERE ARE OPPORTUNITIES."

Hindi raw niya mararating ang kinalalagyan kung hindi dahil sa scholarships.

Mensahe niya sa mga batang nangangarap, “To every kid with a dream, don't let your current circumstances stop you from reaching them. Just keep on dreaming. Things will change, I promise.”

Samantala, sa post ni Joshua nitong May 31, binanggit din niya na ang totoong tagumpay ay hindi nasusukat sa dami ng medalya.

Nang pagtuunan niya ng pansin ang kanyang spiritual life, mas nagkaroon daw ng kabuluhan ang buhay.

Aniya, “Don't attach your identity to temporary things like your awards, position, wealth, etc.

“Think of the question ‘Who are you without your awards and achievements?’

“If you can't answer this, then maybe you need to establish your identity first.

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“For me, I found it in Christ. You can find yours in Him, too.”

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Meet Joshua Mahilum, Chemical Engineering graduate mula sa University of St. La Salle sa Bacolod City, isang private university. Tricycle driver ang ama at street vendor ang ina. Achiever si Joshua at nakakuha ng scholarships.
PHOTO/S: Facebook (Joshua Mahilum)
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