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Mark Joshua Makes His College Debut!

Mark Joshua, one of our newest NingNing scholarship recipients shares with us some snippets from his first day of college in the Philippines, which he never thought would be possible given his family’s impoverished circumstances…

“College? That’s too difficult! I have to quit. I am not cut out for it.” These were common comments I had heard before. I was discouraged. I wondered what I would do when and if my time to attend college would come. Would I also quit like them?

These thoughts lingered in my mind as I got close to high school graduation. Knowing my family’s limited resources, I wondered if  college would even be possible.

Thanks to Ningning Philippines Education Fund, I got to set foot on a college campus. Now, I am officially a college student at Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP).

On June 18th, I woke up early to prepare for my first day of college. “I am now ready!” I was scared but excited also.

I easily found my room but was surprised no one was in yet. Classes were already in progress in nearby rooms. Finally, the professor came. She introduced herself, “. . . Ms. Echaorre, your English teacher.” Ms. Echaorre welcomed the class. She asked us to say something interesting about ourselves. One mentioned being afraid of the heights but had already climbed 2 mountains. Another one loved to swim but almost always ended up sinking.

My time came. Everybody including the professor recognized that I was the one who volunteered to buy the index cards for the class. I was tagged “Mr. Index Card” and later “Macoy,” a name derived from my first name Mark. We had fun during the first day of English class. Friendships and crushes started to develop.

Our next class was Accounting. The Professor was also late. She was soft spoken and stayed seated all the time. We learned later that she was a cancer survivor. She welcomed us to the University and gave a brief history.

I also had classes in Management, English and Culture and they were all very interesting.

The first day was a good day, a good start to my college education. If this is what college is like, I surely will enjoy it! It will be difficult but I will work hard until my degree, Bachelor of Science in Accountancy, is earned. Thanks to those who made it possible for me to be where I am now–to Ali Smith, the founder, and her local staff, Kuya (Big brother) Iddo and Teacher Nonie, THANK YOU VERY MUCH!


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