[Blueboard] PMA wannabe blazes new path to fulfill her dreams!

pathways at admu.edu.ph pathways at admu.edu.ph
Mon Nov 14 11:36:46 PHT 2005

Please post.

We would like to share with you the story of one of our Pathways participants 
from Baguio City which came out at The Manila Times. Pathways-Northern Luzon 
is based at St. Louis University under the leadership of Fr. Jessie Hechanova, 
CICM. In case you would like to learn more about their programs and help them 
in their activities, kindly email Rod Ansagay at pathwaysoic at slu.edu.ph . 
Thank you very much!

PMA wannabe blazes new path to fulfill her dreams
By Rodrigo Ansagay
The Manila Times, November 13,2005

Rheina Lapeña, 17, remembers applying at the Philippine Military Academy
when she was younger. "They turned me down because they said I wasn't
tall enough."

Instead of backing down, like others whose spirits aren't as indomitable,
Rheina took on the challenge. "Challenges are merely instruments for us
to become better and stronger persons.

They are part of our lives and I'm very proud that I am able to hurdle all
those challenges," Rheina says.

A sophomore at the University of the Philippines-Baguio and one of the Ten
Outstanding Youth of  Baguio awardees, Rheina still hurdles challenges
every step of the way. "When I was a freshman, I had to sell [beauty
products] just to add to my allowance because my academic scholarship was
not enough to pay for my other expenses---like for materials used in

She is one of six children, all of them scholars in Baguio universities. 
This makes her resolute to exceed other people's expectations of her,
including her own. But this Ulirang Kabataan of the Philippines and PGMA
Leadership and Academic Excellence Awardee is an orderly person.  She
wants to tackle her aspirations one step at a time.

Rheina admits, though, that it's difficult to manage her time very well,
always being torn between school and her extracurricular activities.
"Being a college student is not an easy thing. I've been meeting a lot of
challenges along the wayæbusy schedule, challenging schoolwork, high
expectations from other people, gossip, family problems. Thanks to
Pathways I have become somewhat wiser in life's give and take. I have
become more aware of the needs of people in my surroundings and I always
strive to find ways of contributing to our community."

Pathways to Higher Education is an innovative education program of Ateneo
de Manila University that aims to help send academically-gifted but
marginalized public high-school students to enter college and take the
courses of their choice. Instead of giving doles and scholarships,
Pathways offers impoverished high-school students academic enrichment
classes, supplementary learning activities and learning resource centers.
 These enable them to study well and earn scholarships.

Rheina is only one of the many students who have gone to college through
this program.  She is a Political Science major.

"I love inspiring and advising people. That's why I said to myself,
perhaps I could inspire more people, share with them what I learned---and
felt---in all the struggles I have encountered and ask them for their
prayers so I can hurdle the other challenges I will surely face when I
graduate," Rheina says.

"I dream of becoming an instructor some day, hopefully at PMA, to inspire
the cadets to help and serve the people," she adds, revealing that
through all her hardships, she has not lost sight of her goal to serve
the country.

"I believe that if each Filipino develops the spirit of unity and
volunteerism, our society will find it easy to achieve the success and
progress we are wishing for,"  says Rheina.

After her undergraduate study, Rheina wants to enroll in law school. In
the meantime, she enjoys her scholarship at UP-Baguio as well as being a
public servant as a chair of Samahang Kabataan.

She says: "Someday I want to establish a foundation that would help less
fortunate students to pursue their college education. I would love to be
a Pathways sponsor."

She realizes that it is not only her dream but the dreams of other people
around her and the people she will be serving in the future that are at
stake.  Consequently, Rheina keeps telling herself that "nothing is
impossible if we do our best and if we are really determined to reach our


It only takes P 1,600.00 a month to help students like Rheina gain a
better future, if you would like to help or volunteer for Pathways,
please call us at (02) 426-6001 local 4044-4049 , send an email to
pathways at admu.edu.ph or text us at 0920-9508171 .

Learn more about what is happening to Pathways outside Metro Manila by logging 
on to the following websites:

Pathways Northern Luzon: http://northernluzonpathways.blogspot.com/

Pathways Visayas: http://www.pathwaysvisayas.blogspot.com

Pathways Mindanao: http://mindanaopathways.blogspot.com/

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