SM scholar feature: Transforming opportunities into pathways of success

Mary Jhoy Mabulac believes that when an opportunity knocks, one must be fast to open the door. When she heard that the SM Foundation College Scholarship Program was accepting applications for school year 2015-2016, she wasted no time in submitting her application.

On April 8, 2015, Mary Jhoy and 144 other students from NCR and nearby areas in Bulacan, Baliwag, Sta. Rosa, Calamba, San Pablo and Cavite were gathered for a contract signing to formalize their grants under SM Foundation’s College Scholarship Program.

“Binigay ng SM Foundation sa akin ang pagkakataon upang makapagpatuloy ng pag-aaral,” Mary Jhoy said. “Pagsisikapan ko na makamit ang mga pangarap ko. (SM Foundation gave me a chance to continue my studies. I will do my best to make my dreams come true).”

Mary Jhoy knows how difficult it is for her parents to support her and her two siblings’ studies. Her father is a jeepney driver while her mother is a simple housewife.

Their financial situation however, fueled Mary Jhoy’s passion to excel in her studies. In high school, Jhoy belonged to the top section and also became part of Araullo High School’s Department of Science and Technology’s Special Science Class. Mary Jhoy recently graduated top 7 among her peers.

Mary Jhoy plans to take up Accountancy in the coming school year and wants to work in a bank in the future. She dreams of travelling around the world with her parents.

Mary Jhoy is only one of the 275 new SM scholars (as of April 2015) who were provided an opportunity to pursue college through SM Foundation’s College Scholarship Program.

Since 1993, SM Foundation has provided college scholarships to underprivileged but bright high school students. SM scholars are provided full scholarship grants with monthly allowance. They are also given the opportunity to work part-time in SM malls to get relevant work experience and help augment their allowances during Christmas and summer breaks. Upon graduation, scholars are also given the opportunity to join the SM Group through an exclusive job offer event.

As of end 2014, the program has produced over 1,900 scholar-graduates and supports 1,500 scholars in its 82 partner schools nationwide.