Proving that everyone has a chance to change their future, no matter their circumstances in life, one woman who previously worked as household helper recently graduated as Magna Cum Laude and aspires to become a teacher.
This inspiring woman lives in Talisay City, Cebu in central Philippines.
Grace Labrador Bacus was born to a poor family with nine children. The third child, she already felt responsible for the welfare of her family even at an early age. But knowing she could have a better future and could help more if she was able to go to school, she found a job as a nanny and household helper so she could have money for her studies.
“My father is a jeepney driver. My mother is a job order employee at the Talisay City Hall, designated as a street sweeper in the public market,” Bacus shared.
“When I graduated in high school, I worked as house maid and a nanny until I reached 18 years old, the legal age to work in a company.”
On days that she does not have classes, she also found a sideline in sewing uniforms, costumes, and even bedsheets. She had a lot of customers because she didn’t ask a fixed price, just letting the customers pay what they can. She used the extra cash to pay for contributions and school supplies.
Photo credit: Grace Labrador Bacus / Cebu Daily News
But her family’s difficult financial situation made her quit school. She had to find a better job to support her younger siblings. She only had the idea of going to college when she applied for a job as overseas Filipino worker (OFW) but was asked to have at least 72 units in college.
Grace enrolled at Talisay City College with the course of Bachelor of Secondary Education Major in English. Intent on completing the 72 units but also born an achiever, Grace did her best in her studies and became a consistent number 1 Dean’s lister even in her freshman year.
So, when she completed the required units, her professor and parents encouraged her to continue instead. While she could already work as OFW then, her professor told her she had a lot of potential to fulfill her dreams as she completed her college education.
“The goal was 72 units only, but I have this attitude that I don’t give mediocrity in everything I do. It was the reason why my parents and my professor opposed my decision of quitting. Because they said work can wait. So, I heeded to their advice,” Grace explained.
It was a good thing she listened because she will Magna Cum Laude this April! Wow. Congratulations, Grace!