40-year-old 'unit earner' passes March 2023 LET: 'Age is not an excuse'

MANILA, Philippines – A 40-year-old licensed teacher proved that it's never too late to reach for our dreams. Mary Annie Liwag is among the many "late bloomers" who passed the March 2023 Licensure Examination for Teachers (LET) announced by the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) on Friday May 19.

Mary Annie Liwag passed the March 2023 Licensure Examination for Teachers at the age of 40
Mary Annie Liwag passed the March 2023 Licensure Examination for Teachers at the age of 40 | Photo Courtesy: Mary Annie Liwag

At the age of 31, Teacher Mary Annie didn't mind wearing a school uniform and joined her classmates, some as young as 19-22 years. According to her, her age isn't an excuse to stop learning. Finally, at the age of 40, she passed the teachers board exam. She said in an interview with The Summit Express, "Never stop dreaming. There is no such thing as 'matanda na ako hindi ko na kailangan mag-aral o magka diploma.' Age is not a shame or excuse po para abutin pa rin mga pangarap natin sa buhay."

Teacher Mary Annie shared that her inspiration to continue is her son, Ryan Miguel, and her mother who always reminded her the importance of education. She said, "Si nanay po kasi namin, hindi man lang po sya nakatapos ng elementary sa sobrang hirap ng buhay nila noon at nakatira pa sila sa liblib na lugar dito sa bayan ng Cavinti. Kaya talagang lahat kami mula pagkabata ay tinanim na niya sa aming mga isip na edukasyon lang talaga yung yaman na kaya niyang ipamana sa amin."

Teacher Mary Annie recalled that she was already 35-years-old when she graduatedBachelor of Science in Business Administration major in Marketing Management. It wasn't her dream course, but it was the one that she could easily finish at that time and with her age.

Even with a degree, Teacher Mary Annie always had always longed to be a teacher. Finally, with the help of her generous sister and the support of her family, she took up units during the pandemic to finish her second degree, BS Secondary Education. In 2021, she finished it and took up the licensure exam.

Teacher Mary Annie shared that so many things happened in her life. She got pregnant while studying, and got married. Then, she got separated, worked as a call center agent, even worked as a househelp abroad. But instead of being hindrances, these challenges motivated her to work harder and push further towards her dream of becoming a teacher.

Her hard work was all worth it as she is now a licensed secondary level teacher. Teacher Mary Annie reminded those who have doubts to take a chance. She said, "It's not too late to dream, to learn and make it in reality. Age is not an excuse."

— Sally, The Summit Express

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