Jul 20 2015

Philippine youth finds confidence with scholarship

Mark is a good student, finishing in the top three in his high school in the Philippines. But despite this accomplishment, going to college wasn’t a certainty. His parents’ medical issues meant the family budget was tighter than ever, and there just wasn’t anything extra to help pay for college fees.

Mark learned about Unbound’s scholarship program when Mary Jane Carpio, a community development worker with Unbound’s Antipolo program, visited the home of Mark’s younger cousin, Emmanuel, who lives just a few doors down from Mark and is sponsored through Unbound. She met Mark and started a conversation with him.

According to Mary Jane, “Mark is a good and intelligent boy that has a lot of potential, and these are the criteria for a scholarship application.”

Mark’s academic achievements, financial need and willingness to serve the community made him an ideal candidate for the scholarship program.

“[Unbound] gave me an opportunity to study in college,” Mark said. “After high school, I thought I would not be able to study in college. [The scholarship program] actually covers my tuition fee, financial assistance for my transportation and materials that I needed to have for my chosen field of study.”

With the scholarship, Mark had enough funds to enroll in one of the public universities. Though he originally wanted to study architecture, public universities where he lives don’t offer degrees in that field, and Mark decided to pursue civil engineering instead. When thinking about the future, he has high hopes.

Mark is part of the editorial team for his school's newspaper.

Mark is part of the editorial team for his school’s newspaper, The Legacy.

“I want to pass my board exam and be a licensed civil engineer in the future,” Mark said. “In that way, I might be able to help my family and bring my younger cousins in school also. … I want to give them the best things in life, as much as I can.”

Being part of the scholarship program did more for Mark than just help with tuition. One of the requirements of receiving a scholarship is completing service hours by helping younger students in the Unbound sponsorship program. For Mark, that means helping them with letter writing and other activities.

Before joining the scholarship program, Mark saw himself as a shy person, but through his service hours he was forced outside his comfort zone and gained a new perspective.

“I was not a sociable person before,” Mark said. “Instead of using my free time outside, I would rather read books and do advance review on my subjects. But when I joined the foundation, it really changed me a lot. I thought that having many friends would just bring you to bad things, but it doesn’t. It actually completes who I am, and [my friends] are also an additional inspiration for me to strive more in my studies.

“[The] scholarship program does not only mean financial assistance,” Mark continued. “It also hones talents and skills and all the things that are hidden inside you.”

With his newly found confidence, Mark started expanding his activities beyond school and home. Though he is studying to become a civil engineer, he also has a talent for writing. He’s now part of the editorial team for his university’s newspaper, The Legacy. He’s even taken on the responsibility of being the leader of the Antipolo program scholars.

Mark continues to do well in school and is expected to graduate in 2017 with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. When asked what advice he would give to others, he had this to say:

“Face problems with courage and strength, because God will always be there to make a way to help you out and bring a brighter tomorrow for you and for your family.”

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Jordan Kimbrell

Jordan Kimbrell, writer/editor
Jordan joined the Unbound family in 2011, just a few weeks after completing her masters in English: Creative Writing from Kansas State University. Jordan is constantly inspired by the hope and creativity displayed by the sponsored members and their families and loves being able to share their stories with the rest of the world.

2 thoughts on “Philippine youth finds confidence with scholarship”

  1. Congratulations to Mark. I hope that you continue to do well in your chosen career and inspire other people. You are lucky to have a great opportunity to be part of the Scholarship Program. Always keep to study hard. Don’t waste that opportunity, as a former service scholar i want to share this thoughts to you.

    1. Put God First.
    2. Pray Hard with works it will works.
    3. Just do all your best and God will make sure that you will be blessed.
    4. Let your love for God be your strongest motivation in life.

    Continue to help needy person in your simple but memorable way.

    Godbless Mark and Godbless Unbound Family

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