Tue, Jul 07, 2009 - Page 4 News List

COMMUNITY COMPASS: Filipina realizes long-held dream of college graduation

STAFF WRITER, WITH CNA

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Love changes everything.

When Rosel Be obtained her bachelor’s degree from National University of Kaohsiung late last month, the Philippine native understood fully what those three words mean.

Be’s journey to love began in 1999, when she had to stop her life as a university freshman to earn a living because her family could no longer afford to cover her tuition.

She obtained a job at an electronics factory in Nanzih (楠梓), Kaohsiung City, but she remitted the bulk of her meager salary to her family back home, leaving very little for herself.

Her dream of finishing her university studies became increasingly remote. Gradually, she began thinking about how she could earn more money to improve her family’s livelihood after her three-year contract in Taiwan expired.

Then everything changed. Be met a Taiwanese engineer at her factory named Chu Yung-ren (朱永仁), who encouraged her to pursue her dream and offered her sympathy when she plunged into depression.

The friendship developed into a relationship and when, after her contract expired, the time came for her to leave Taiwan, Chu asked for her hand in marriage.

Be chose to stay in Taiwan, now a wife. Driven by her desire to finish college, she enrolled in the Department of Western Languages and Literature at National Kaohsiung University and immersed herself in her studies.

On Saturday, she graduated summa cum laude and was admitted to the Graduate Institute of Foreign Languages and Literature at National Sun Yat-Sen University, also in Kaohsiung.

Be, who still struggles a little with Mandarin, jumped into her husband’s arms after receiving her diploma at the commencement ceremony, saying she could not have made those achievements without him.

She is now looking forward to her graduate studies, with high hopes that she will be able to obtain a teaching job after earning her master’s degree.

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