Treshia May S. Estrosas
     Bachelor of Science in Accounting Technology
     Carlos Hilado Memorial State College – Fortune Towne Campus

Someone said, “Life is about taking risks, there will be no change if you do not take any risk.” That is why I risk leaving the comfort zone of my rural hometown, ventured alone with very little money, to the big City to further my education, because there is a greater return. My diploma is the receipt of the return for the risk I took.  However, Ellen DeGeneres also said, “When you take risks, you learn that there will be times when you succeed and there will be times when you fail, and both are equally important.” 

Every diploma has its own story to tell.  It had been a tough battle for me from the time I entered College in the big City up to the time I wear this academic gown with hood, cap and tassel.  Fortunately, I was able to overcome the hurdles, ran and finished the race. Yes, I stumbled in the race. I fell down and got bruised but it did not stop me from getting up and finishing the race. I can’t run fast like others but I can still walk because what matters to me is not winning the race but how I finished the race. I grew up in a simple family; my mama is a vendor outside a local school for 14 years. She sells lugaw, kutchinta, yema, pancit, sago’t gulaman and many more. My father is a laborer and handyman; he can do a lot of things. He plows rice and sugarcane fields; harvest and load the harvest on a carabao cart; drive the cart to where the truck is waiting; unload them from the cart and load them onto the truck.  He can also fix electrical wirings.

Our life is quite difficult, but I take the road less travelled. When I was still in high school I chose to enroll myself in a science high school instead of a local high school in our Barangay.  After the entrance exam they ranked all the takers and I was ranked second to the last among the passers.  I was disappointed but still I’m grateful that I passed.  I heard a lot of criticisms. Some say I don’t deserve to be in that school since I ranked near the bottom in the entrance exam; that I may end up a failure.  Instead of getting frustrated, I used them as my motivation. I want to prove to them that I am not what they expected me to be.  I want to show to them later what I can become.  Today, I owe them a “thank you” for I am not where I am right now without their unfavorable judgment.  No matter how huge the storm may be, it is not enough reason for one to give up the race because life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass; it’s about learning to dance in the rain.

I am not who I am today without the people who molded, trained and supported me.  I am extremely grateful to the people I owe debts beyond repayment.

To my parents, I feel honored and blessed to have them and I want to express my deep gratitude for their care and support over the years. Sending a son or daughter to college is such a huge responsibility. That’s why it is unequalled happiness for parents to see their children wear toga and receive a diploma. It is now time to witness the fruits of their toils. Ma, Pa, I am highly blessed to have such amazing parents like you; you are both one of a kind. Thank you for instilling in me the traits of perseverance, honesty and integrity. I will never forget the important values you have passed on to me. Indeed your sacrifices are immeasurable.  Despite of your financial handicap and back breaking hard work, you never complained. I salute you, for me you are my heroes. My achievement would not be possible without your support financially, emotionally, spiritually and morally. I am grateful to you for giving me the opportunity to study. It is the best legacy that I will inherit from you.  Thank you for being my inspiration throughout this journey. 

To Simplicio Gamboa Sr. (SGS) Foundation, thank you for being an important part of my journey. I could not have made it without your help.  I am honored to be one of the recipients of the SGS Scholarship. Thanks to your financial assistance, I became the first in my family to go to college.  Growing up in a less privileged community is full of challenges.  However, it has also helped me realize the value of a college education.  SGS Foundation, thank you so much for everything that you have done to help me reach my goal and realize my dream.  I am highly blessed to have such a generous scholarship. I hope that this scholarship will grow bigger so that a lot more poor but deserving students will have their dreams come true. I would like to thank also our scholarship coordinator, Dr. Lily Go.  Thank you for always challenging and encouraging us.  Thank you for instilling in us a lot of good values and for molding us to be scholars worthy of the intentions of SGS Foundation.  To the late Mr. Simplicio Gamboa Sr., although I have never met you, your contribution to my success does not go unnoticed and will always be remembered.  If not for the care and support of SGS Foundation, I would not be standing among the graduates. 

To my CHMSC (Carlos Hilado Memorial State College) family, please accept my heartfelt thanks for the best gift you could ever have given me: a good education. I am who I am today because of your efforts, guidance, and support. I could not have done it without you. Thank you so much CHMSC.  To the government, thank you for the free tuition program. You have opened a lot of opportunities to the students to be educated.

My deepest gratitude goes to our Omnipotent, Omniscient and Omnipresent God, for everything that I have mentioned above will not be possible without Him. Thank God for giving me all of these. “The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” —Deuteronomy 31:8.  Indeed, God is always watching us; he wants happiness for all us. Trust in the Lord, give up everything to him, just give your best shot and God will do the rest of it. Thank you Lord for making impossible things becomes possible.

I remember hearing this, “if the elevator of success is out of order then use the stairs, take one step at a time and definitely you will reach the top of that building.”  That is what I did in reaching the “floor” for college graduates; and I intend to continue doing so if the elevator is never fixed.