A lad from a small municipality in Sierra Madre received full scholarship to study at Harvard University, one of the most prestigious schools in the world. This rare opportunity gives not only his family but his whole community a chance to completely change their lives.
The seventh of the nine sons of a farmer, Romnick L. Blanco had to make a lot of sacrifices as a young boy to get basic education. For years, Romnick had to walk long hours, cross rivers, and endure the heat of the sun to get to school. What seems to be easy for privileged kids was hard work for Romnick, yet he endured all the difficulties believing it was his only chance to get a better life.
With the help of GreenEarth Heritage Foundation, Romnick, along with other poor kids in the community, was given the chance to get public school education and access to computer literacy and English classes. Romnick excelled and outpaced other kids in English literacy and the foundation quickly recognized this.
As fate would have it, the farmer’s son was given a five-year scholarship at the International School Manila (ISM). While at ISM, he was able to pursue his interest through different activities. He was awarded “Most Outstanding in Theatre” for two consecutive years.
On top of that, Romnick got full scholarships to top universities like Dartmouth College, Wesleyan University, the New York University at Abu Dhabi and Harvard University.
But before entering the Ivy League university, Romnick will be taking advantage of a gap year to hone practical life skills, travel around the Philippines, plant more trees, and teach farmer’s children and fellow scholars theatre lessons.
The lad’s incredible journey from the mountains to one of the best schools in the world will certainly not end on his graduation day. In the future, Romnick hopes to be able to inspire other farmers’ kids and help them live, hope and dream big.
“If they write about me, people will be happy to read my story for two minutes, feel good, be inspired, and then they will quickly forget. But if they talk about the kind of community I come from, full of hopelessness, poverty, and despair, and talk about how GreenEarth Heritage Foundation is addressing the problems, that will serve a bigger group of people beyond myself, I think that has more impact.”