Phạm Thị Thuận and her brother cook in their house in Cao Ngọc Commune, Ngọc Lặc District in central Thanh Hóa Province. Photos daidoanket.vn
THANH HÓA – On Monday, Phạm Thị Thuận, a Mường ethnic girl from a mountainous village in central Thanh Hóa Province, travelled more than 100 kilometres to Thanh Hóa City to complete the admission test at Hồng Đức University.
Thuận has beaten thousands of candidates to be a student of History and Pedagogy at the university, with a relatively high score of 29.75 in total.
Becoming a history teacher has always been her dream, and her achievement is the result of both tireless effort and the strong determination she has shown since her childhood.
Thuận was born into a very poor family. Her father suffers from contorted limbs, and her mother has weak mental health. Both of them are illiterate, but they know the importance of education for their children.
Her mother is the breadwinner of the family. She worked in the rice field and collected scraps to get money to send Thuận and her little brother to school. She worked all day long and only got back home at night, but didn’t always manage to get enough food for the whole family.
Thuận got used to hard work from an early age. After school, she was hired to herd cattle for some villagers and was given boxes of rice as payment.
When Thuận’s mother got a job at the toothpick factory in Hà Nội in 2016, Thuận became the woman of the family. She learnt how to properly spend the money the mother sent to the family and the supportive money the father received every month. She prepared food, cooked meals, bought medicine for her father and helped her little brother do his homework.
Thuận was always busy, going to school all day and spending her free time on household chores, but she never let go of her dream to become a history teacher.
She spared no effort in performing well at school and was always top of the class during her 12 years at school. Thuận said whenever she felt tired and discouraged, she borrowed some good books to recharge herself and boost her spirit.
Thuận has managed to become a student at Hồng Đức University.
Thuận said the harsh years of her childhood helped her realise one big thing: only education could change her life forever.
“I didn’t want to fall into the vicious life of dropping out of school, getting married, having children and living in poverty. Therefore, I always told myself not to give up,” she said.
The day she was informed that she had been accepted to Hồng Đức University Thuận said she was happy, but also worried. She had reached her long-cherished dream but was now worried about financing her university study.
“Mom cried on the phone, saying that she was sorry for her helplessness, and then my dad cried, too,” she said.
Luckily, some organisations and benefactors heard about her situation and have offered to help her pursue her dream.
Dr Lê Hoằng Bá Huyền, Vice-Rector of Hồng Đức University, said that the school have contacted Thuận to ensure she receives support ahead of admission time.
The school has offered Thuận the opportunity to stay in the school dormitory for free. Furthermore, the school has contacted known benefactors, along with the school's study promotion fund, to provide financial support for Thuận. She would also be eligible to join social skills at school.
After graduation, Thuận will also be given an internship opportunity, if her academic performance allows it. VNS