“Yes, graduating with honors may sound so overwhelming but academics and school only take a portion of your entire life. It might give you an edge if you did well but there is more to life and you should not feel sad or less of yourself if you are not part of the honor list. What truly matters is your life story.”
This was stated by 21-year old Computer Science student, Jireh Bautista on his speech as he was receiving the Presidential Awardee for Academic Excellence during the Cebu Institute of Technology University (CIT-U) 2017 Parangal. This annual tradition aims to recognize the student-achievers.
For Jireh, there is more to life than graduating with honors as what matters to him more is the life story behind it. On his interview with SunStar Philippines, aside from being an academic scholar of CIT-U, he said he was also blessed to receive scholarships from different sectors such as Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Cebu City Government, Real Life Foundation of Victory Christian Fellowship, and Cebu City National Science High School Batch 1977.
He mentioned he wouldn’t have been able to go to school if it weren’t because of those scholarship grants. His father was a just a shoe repairman and life was hard for them though he didn’t really feel it as he was studying at a public school before. He only felt the difference when he went to a Science high school upon entering secondary level. He needed to avoid various school activities that didn’t really fit their budget.
His father, Pantaleon, said he earns less than P8,000 a month as a shoe repairman.
“Let us not lose hope. Have faith in God. Let God carry your burden,” he stated referring to parents who are also having struggles sending their children to school.
Jireh will be receiving a well-maintained car from CCNSHS Batch 1977 as a graduation gift. When asked where he will park his car, he said they will find a way as since it is a gift from God, he knows He will provide a parking place for it, too.
You might be struggling now with a number of things – school or even financial struggles or your relationships or problems within the family. But what make a great testimony is not literally the achievements but the amazing stories of integrity, of breakthroughs over your struggles and of victories over your hardships.
So what then is your life story to tell? To your future children? To the next generations to come? “We are all recipients of God’s tremendous blessings,” Jireh said during his speech.