'Kasambahay' from Cagayan graduates from college as magna cum laude

Who would have thought that a child who used to have no dream profession would someday graduate from college with flying colors?

This was the life of Jarel Barcelona Tadio from Tuguegarao, Cagayan who grew up not thinking of dreaming for himself but was able to finish college as magna cum laude.

Whenever Tadio is asked about his dream profession when he was a child, he would often say “Wala. Wala akong gustong maging in the future. Basta mai-ayos ko lang buhay nila mama, ok na ako.”

After completing high school, Tadio had no plans of pursuing college. Even if his parents were willing to support his education he refused to study thinking that their family would only go deep into debt.

That is why, as young as 15, Tadio started to work to help his parents. He first became an on-call crew in a catering service. But after two months, he quit this job due to the low salary which is not enough to support the needs of his family.

Tadio then became a househelp which he truly enjoyed and was really proud of. 

“Namasukan ako bilang maid. Oo, katulong po, yaya. Kasambahay. Pero taas nuo ako sa naging trabaho ko. Marangal yun. At ang masaya dun, libre na ang tulugan, libre pa ang pagkain, libre meryenda, libre tv, libre cable at libre wifi. Saan ka pa!”

But in his first year of working as a maid, Tadio came to realize that it is important to dream and to have the education to be able to become more successful than being a house helper forever.

“One afternoon, when I was doing my chores, I suddenly asked myself: ‘Jarel, forever ka na bang kasambahay? Forever nalang bang ganito?‘”

Hence, despite the difficulty of his circumstances, he enrolled in college to be a bearer of a degree in hospitality industry management.

“Mahirap maging working student, aral sa umaga, trabaho sa hapon at gabi… Maliban pa dun, may mga taong hindi yata masaya na makita kang nagsisikap makamit ang pangarap mo.”

Tadio remembered being discriminated against, belittled, and judged by his classmates and relatives for his financial misfortunes, but he stood tall and remained determined for the life that he hope would his family have.

“People may talk behind us, people may not believe in us, and people may drag us down but do not be shaken, we do not exist for them; because we live for the people who have faith in us – because this life is for our family.”

And despite of his success, Tadio did not forget his parents and even dedicated his achievement to them as he said "Ma, Pa, ito na po ang bunga ng bawat pagod, bawat puyat, bawat sakripisyo, bawat hirap at bawat luha…Graduate na po ang anak nyo at ito ay dahil sa hindi nyo ako pinabayaan, dahil sa pagtitiwala sa aking kakayahang tapusin ng matapang at tahakin ng may takot sa Dyos ang aking nasimulan.”

Source: Inquirer

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