MANILA, Philippines — A student of the Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP) in Manila is inspiring countless netizens as she shared on social media an academic milestone — finishing college this May despite suffering from suspected alopecia.
Baring her complete hair loss, which she bore since birth, 24-year-old Patricia Banzuela proudly posted on Facebook her graduation photos.
She is set to receive her diploma in Bachelor of Science in Business Administration major in Marketing Management.
“Be inspired. Ang kapansanan ay hindi hadlang para ‘di makapagtapos ng pag-aaral,” she wrote with the hashtag #NaBullyNagAyosNagAralNakaPagTapos.
She added she is also a volunteer student at the university’s Scholarship and Financial Assistance Services office and a recipient of the Commission on Higher Education’s scholarship program.
In a brief interview with INQUIRER.net, Banzuela said she is a “woman of strength” in spite of having been bullied in school because of her condition.
“Napaka-jolly ko po and strong woman kapag ako ay nakikita niyo po parang walang sakit. Physical lang parang may sakit but mentally, I am normal,” she said.
“Ito iyong naging inspirasyon ko para makapagtapos ng pag-aaral. My situation ay hindi hadlang para ‘di ko maabot mga pangarap ko sa buhay,” she concluded. /jpv