At a young age, Franchesca Allyza Tan already learned the value of sacrifice and unconditional love from her parents who worked hard to in order that she and her two older siblings and two younger ones will get the best education that they could give them. As a young child, she took on getting high grades seriously because all her four siblings excelled in school, until she realized that she wanted to excel for a much bigger cause – for her family. In her heart, she nurtured the dream of wanting to give her family a good life, be able to help them in the future, and find a job that will always be needed in any field or industry. Her parents, who are both Accountants, always served as her inspiration.

Not a childhood dream

Hard work and perseverance paid off, Tan graduated Salutatorian in high school and was awarded the Santo Tomas Scholarship grant as a college freshman at the UST AMV College of Accountancy.

It was her choice to take up Accountancy in college, although she never had it as a childhood dream as many of her school friends did. In fact, in hindsight, Tan said that she never had ‘a childhood dream for any profession,’ although she wished that she had one, especially when she had to decide which course to take up in college. She was always looking at the practical side of life, including the career path that she would have to take some day. But eventually, when she was in already in college, the love for Accountancy grew on her.

Her parents supported her in this decision to take up Accountancy, as they would always trust the choices that she has made. But the truth is, she actually had her own doubts if she could manage. All were aware of the stiff academic requirements in the UST AMV College of Accountancy.   “Entering college, I can still remember myself asking for God’s guidance to never let me lose my scholarship grant.  That’s why my scholarship became something that I really valued and I still value greatly up to now, for I know how much love for me and faith in my capability that my family poured in when they let me study in UST,” the Accountancy Summa cum Laude recalled.

“It is one of the main factors why I worked so hard in college since there were (high) grades to be maintained and I knew that it would really be hard for me and my family, in case I would lose it,” she shared.

“Thankfully, with God’s guidance which sustained me and through hard work, I was able to accomplish it,” Tan said referring to her graduating from college, with the highest Latin honors at that.

During her early years in college, she was not so active in student organizations since she had to commute from Manila to Cavite every day. Besides, she just wanted to focus on her studies first and foremost.

But when she entered her third year until she was on her fifth year, she realized that a lot of opportunities were available for the taking. There were competitions, including the one that she participated in abroad, and other activities that allowed her exposure to other facets of student life that could make her grow further, and she decided to take part in them. “I was given the chance to become the head of Accounting Pool UST-JPIA. I also served in Becarios de Santo Tomas, the organization of UST scholars, as a Community Development Staff Member for a year,” she said.It was from these experiences that Tan saw the beauty in college life from another perspective, more on helping other people and seeing the value of teamwork.

Resilience: value learned in UST

When asked if which value as a UST graduate she would bring with her as a professional, it was easy for Tan to answer:
“If there is one thing that I would really like to thank UST for, it is for teaching me how to become resilient and how to never lose myself in the process. College life in UST taught me that there are really some things that one cannot control such as exams piling up, events piling up, and others, and the only thing that one needs to do is to act on them and just believe that wherever you are, God is always in control,” she quipped.

It is for the same reason that she had realized now that some of the things that she thought she could not handle before had actually become easier for her to manage. She is quick to add though, that she is aware that there are more to come her way in the professional world. But being equipped with values and armed with her Thomasian education and training, Tan said that she would always remind herself to just trust in the process, do whatever she can to avoid regrets in the end, and trust Him always.

Closer to God and family

“More than the education that UST imparted, there are three things that I will never forget about my UST life: (1) how it has molded me to overcome some of the things that I thought I cannot do before, (2) it gave me a good set of friends that I will treasure for a lifetime, friends who accept me for who I really am, and most importantly, (3) it led me closer to my family and God,” Tan explained.

“I did not have that much confidence when it comes to speaking before but due to the opportunities that UST gave me, for which I will always be thankful for, slowly what I thought was something scary, became something that I would really want to try again,” she continued. “I am now a lot closer to my family and most importantly, to God. I was not used to sharing my experiences before especially to my parents but slowly while in college, especially during the time when I could only see them during weekends because I had to live in a dormitory, that I felt was my wake-up call, and I realized that I needed to be spend my life showing them how much I love them,” she said. “While with God, the change went in a slow but blessed progress. Before, I did things because they were an obligation, until one day, talking with Him has become my sanctuary, my safe haven and that I will always be thankful for,” ended Franchesca Allyza Tan, AMV’s 2020 Summa cum Laude, and one of UST’s prospective board topnotchers.