It’s never too late to get diploma for 55-yr-old driver | Inquirer News
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It’s never too late to get diploma for 55-yr-old driver

/ 01:32 AM April 02, 2012

ORMOC CITY—It is never too late to finish high school, even for a 55-year-old father of three grownups who had finished college and found stable jobs.

Wilfredo Estopin was able to see his children through to college but never got the chance to finish high school.

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On March 28, what was initially unthinkable for the 55-year-old driver became reality.

Estopin received his high school diploma during graduation ceremonies at the New Ormoc City National High School (NOCNHS), the oldest in a batch of 15 students in a pioneer night class at the public school.

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Estopin, fourth of 11 siblings, was in first year high school when he dropped out because his parents couldn’t afford to continue sending him to school.

Despite at times losing interest in pursuing his studies, Estopin found inspiration in his children who encouraged him to finish high school, according to Estopin’s wife, Fedelina, a worker at the Ormoc City barangay affairs office.

Estopin was scared at the thought of returning to school in his age, worrying about how to deal with younger classmates.

According to Fedelina, Estopin feared being unable to catch up with his lessons.

In 1987, however, Estopin passed a test that allowed him to enroll in fourth year high school. It took him 24 years, however, to finally muster the courage to enroll at the NOCNHS’ first night high school class.

It was a decision he is proud to have made now.

With his other classmates, Estopin marched on the stage of the Ormoc City Superdome where he received his diploma from Mayor Eric C. Codilla.

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The Department of Education also gave Estopin a certificate of appreciation for completing his secondary education despite his age.

Estopin said it was his turn to focus on completing his education after supporting his children through school.

His children, Michael, 32; Jessie, 31; and Lowena Jane Estopin-Badong, 27; have completed their undergraduate studies.

Michael and Lowena Jane both finished Bachelor of Science, major in psychology, at the University of the Philippines-Tacloban.

Michael is a human resource management officer of the Western Leyte College and is taking up law. Jane is with the Department of the Interior and Local Government.

Jessie graduated from the St. Peter’s College after completing Bachelor of Arts, major in management. He now works at the Coca-Cola Bottling Co.

Both Jessie and Lowena Jane are married.

Estopin plans to take up an automotive mechanic course at the Ormoc Manpower, Training and Research Center this June to get a certificate from the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority.

Fedelina told the Inquirer the whole family remained supportive of her husband’s plans.

She added their children were willing to help pay for their father’s education.

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TAGS: 55-year-old driver, Graduation, High School, ormoc city, Wilfredo Estopin
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