By Roy Mabasa
A top student from Lanao del Norte became the first Filipino student to attend the prestigious University of Incarnate Word (UIW) in Texas through the United States embassy’s 2018 EducationUSA Fair.
Maria Cedeño, who came from the Filipino Turkish Tolerance School in Zamboanga, joined the education fair last year together with her classmates to explore opportunities to study in the United States.
“I never imagined myself studying in America, but with the help of the US embassy in the Philippines, I was able to choose a good school that recognized my potential,” Cedeño said.
According to a statement released by the US embassy, Cedeño initially met with admissions officers from 34 US universities and colleges while at the fair, including an international admissions official from UIW.
Founded in 1881, the UIW is a private Catholic university that ranked 39th in the Best Colleges in Regional Universities West.
Shortly after the education fair, Cedeño received free virtual step-by-step college guidance from one of EducationUSA’s advisers.
“There were a lot of universities at the EducationUSA Fair, and it wasn’t easy to choose from all of them, [but] UIW seemed like it could be my home,” she said.
Thereafter, Cedeño secured partial financial aid from the university and was granted additional funding by her provincial government.
“My goal is to give back to my community in Lanao del Norte after college. I looked for how I can get the best education to mold me into a person that is capable of putting my goals into reality, and the United States gave me that opportunity,” she said.
EducationUSA is the US government’s official resource for students interested in pursuing higher education opportunities in the United States.
This year’s EducationUSA Fair will take place in Cebu today, February 28, and in Manila on Friday, March 1.