Rivas Jeric / Facebook

What was supposed to be one of Jeric Rivas’ most special days, turned out to be a heartbreaking one after his parents did not show up to his college graduation ceremony. Rivas graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Criminology from La Concepcion College in San Jose Del Monte Bulacan in the Philippines. Rivas, who did not grow up wealthy, left his hometown of Sibuyan Island in the province of Romblon to seek a better life elsewhere. While studying at the prestigious school, the college student had to work odd jobs in order to afford his tuition such as being a factory worker, a fast food service crew member, and a housemaid. Some of Rivas’ professors noticed him struggling and offered him food and even provided shelter for him. Against all odds, Rivas graduated as the top student from his university. In a Facebook post, Rivas shared his experience on his graduation day, saying all he wanted was for his parents to be in attendance, but sadly they did not show.

Rivas shared in the post that his parents had never been there to support him in the past. Rivas recalled a time in elementary school when he received a medal for earning top honors in his class. A family member was supposed to present Rivas with the medal at the ceremony. But no one showed up, so he didn’t even bother going on stage to accept the award. At another ceremony in high school, he got one of his friends to send their parents up with him.

One of Rivas’ kind professors accompanied him on stage when his name was called to receive his scroll. “One of my other professors were standing there on stage waiting for me and gave me a hug. While that moment took some of my sadness away, I still ended up crying in front of everyone,” said Rivas in the post. Rivas thanked all of his kind professors who supported him throughout his college experience, and ended the post with a message to his parents. “To my parents, who could still not accept me in their life, if you’re reading this, this is me now and I hope I made you proud.”

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