Not having the resources is not an excuse. You only need to open your eyes to the many opportunities that’s waiting for you. You just have to push harder sometimes.”
This was the advice of Mark Bernard Nuñez, 19, one of the first batch of scholar-graduates of the Accenture Phils. Skills to Succeed program, to underprivileged youths.
Nuñez completed a degree in Systems and Networks Administration, a two-year certificate degree offered by the University of San Carlos under the Accenture program.
The program aims to give access to underprivileged youths to education, employment and a better future.
Nuñez now works for Timex Phils. Inc. as its Global Single Instance consultant for at least P10,000 a month.
With his earnings, he is sending his sister to college in Cebu and has helped finance the building of a small fishing boat for his parents, who plan to venture into fishing.
“Everything is slowly picking up and I’m happy I was able to help make all these possible,” said Nuñez in Cebuano as he looked back at how he made it this far.
Two years ago, Nuñez, who hails from Mabini, Bohol province, said he nearly lost his dream to finish a degree and get a job.
He had just lost his scholarship of an accountancy course at the Holy Name University in Bohol when he failed to keep a 1.25 grade point average for the scholarship.
Nuñez is one of seven children of a farmer in Bohol. He said his father would till the field while his mother would take care of them.
Nuñez did well in school and was a valedictorian in elementary and high school.
When he lost his scholarship, he said he nearly lost hope and considered stopping his college studies.
But he later decided to pursue his studies even if he had to do part-time work to finance his studies.
His world changed for the better when his former high school teacher told his mother about Accenture’s scholarship program in Cebu.
“It was like another door was closed and God opened a window. And it’s up to me if I’d grab it. I grabbed it because I thought that opportunities like this will only come once in a life time,” said Nuñez.
Having passed the examination given by staff of Passerelles Numeriques, which is the partner organization of Accenture Phils. Inc. for their Skills to Succeed program, Nuñez was one of the first batch of scholars for school year 2009 to 2012.
He graduated together with 23 other scholars last April and got his degree.
“While in school I really tried my best to learn everything that was taught to us. We were given free learning, free board and lodging and food, so there was no other better way to repay that but by learning what I can and soon become a good example among my fellow students,” said Nuñez.
He was assigned for his on-the-job training as part of the curriculum at Timex Philippines Inc., a watch manufacturing company based at the Mactan Export Processing Zone in Lapu-Lapu City.
Because of his hard work and dedication, Timex hired him as a full-time employee.
Despite his good fortune, Nuñez continues to dream and plans to take a bachelor’s degree in information technology or computer engineering, which will complement the two-year degree he finished. /Aileen Garcia–Yap, Reporter