Fish vendor finishes college with flying colors


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A fish vendor from Barangay Taloot in Argao town in Cebu will be getting her “biggest catch” this coming weekend as she will graduating with honors at the University of San Jose-Recolectos (USJ-R) in Cebu City.

Fish vendor finishes college with flying colors

Regine Villamejor, a consistent dean’s lister at her university, will graduate magna cum laude with a Bachelor’s degree in Arts in Liberal Arts and Commerce major in Communication and Marketing (LIACOM).

Regine Villamejor USJR graduation
PHOTO CREDIT: Cebu Daily News
“When I was admitted in college, I really promised myself that I will graduate with flying colors. I’m almost there. We’re close to the finish line,” Regine told Cebu Daily News.

But unlike most of her classmates, Regine’s family had to make sacrifices in order for her to cross the finish line. Born to a fisherman father and a fish vendor mother, Regine had to wake up at 5 am to help her mother sell her father’s catch of local fish.

The family, who lives in a small nipa hut in Barangay Taloot, would earn P700 from selling fish daily. Unfortunately, the amount wasn’t enough to cover their needs.

“There were times when my parents (would) argue where to get (the) money (that we need). We even reached a point where my parents suggested that I stop going to school,” the working student recounted.

Regine Villamejor USJR graduation
PHOTO CREDIT: Cebu Daily News
However, this didn’t stop Regine from chasing her dream. Even if her parents almost gave up on her ambition to finish her studies, Regine found a way to pursue her dream. Luckily, she was able to get scholarship grant at USJ-R.

Regine Villamejor USJR graduation
PHOTO CREDIT: Cebu Daily News
Regine gets to enjoy a 50% discount on her tuition fee, provided that she maintains an average grade of 1.3 to 1.4.

Her home was away from the university, so Regine had to rent a boarding house in Cebu City. Since she only had P700 weekly allowance, Regine had to give up some of her meals to save money on school projects and in order to earn extra cash, she would sell biscuits to her classmates.

During her free time, Regine would come home to help her mother sell fish.

“I’m not ashamed to sell the fish. My friends know about it but still they accept me for who I am,” she said.

Despite the challenges she and her family had to go through, Regine said poverty should not impede us from achieving our dreams. She hopes to find a well-paying job soon in order to send her two teen brothers to school.

--Mini, The Summit Express

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