Jeepney driver's daughter is 2nd placer in nursing exam
BACOLOD CITY, Philippines – "We didn't have money," said Charlyn Montebon Villa, but she wanted to be a nurse so bad.
The 21-year-old Villa is now the pride of Riverside College in Bacolod, having placed second in the nursing licensure examination that was conducted in May by the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC).
The cum laude graduate garnered the second highest score of 86.20% among the 9,707 passers. There were a total of 17,891examinees.
She is also the pride now of Talisay City, where her family resides, and where the community has witnessed how she wanted to be a nurse at an early age and strived to become that against the odds.
Charlyn Villa is the daughter of Nonito, a jeepney driver, who has been supporting his family through this livelihood for 30 years now. Her mother, Helen, is a housewife. She is second in a brood of 4 – the eldest brother has epilepsy, while the younger siblings are still in college and in grade school.
“I was 6 or 7 years old, I saw my cousin, who is a nurse. She helped my mother and those who were sick. I wanted to be like that – to take care of my mother and others,” Villa told Rappler on Wednesday, June 24, the morning after she learned of the board exam results.
“We didn't have money,” she recalled. Even if her baon (allowance) was short, she attended school every day.
Her mother's sister, Digna Blackett, helped pay her tuition, while her parents sustained her daily allowances.
When the nursing board exam results were published Tuesday night, “My auntie called me and she cried. Their hardwork in sending me to school paid off,” Villa said.
Villa herself could not believe she placed second in the exams. "It was mixed emotions. I was surprised and very thankful."
She said she is thankful to her school: "I can’t make it without their guidance and their inputs. I have learned a lot. This is the best nursing school and the teachers here motivate us to be the best."
Maria Corazon Familiaran, Riverside College dean of nursing, said the school is very happy and proud of Villa's accomplishment. She revealed that this was the first time that the school got a second placer in the board exam. “Our highest topnotcher was in Top 3.”
The Bacolod-based school has a passing percentage of 90.63% this time, with 29 passers out of 32 examinees.
Familiaran said the school had promised Villa a job at the Riverside Hospital. "She will be accepted to the hospital immediately as a full-time nurse. A slot will be reserved for her," the dean said.
But first Villa needs to complete the 5-month clinical enhancement program, which will be offered to her for free. She said that normally, graduates of Riverside will have to pay P10,000 for the training, those from other schools have to pay P20,000.
Familiaran told Villa to “always pray. With God, nothing’s impossible. Work to the best you could because I know our school produces the best nurses in the world.” – Rappler.com