Rebecca Heilman, a 60-year-old mother of seven children who recently received her high school diploma is calling on the Liberian government through the Ministry of Education to provide her scholarship to further her education at a higher institution.
Madam Heilman recently graduated from the Kerkulah Giddings Senior High School in Sanoyea District, Bong County as the only female among 13 graduating students in the first graduating class of the school.She obtained an aggregate average of 85 percent that qualified her as third dux among the graduates.Speaking to our Bong County correspondent recently, Madam Heilman explains that despite her age, she remains focused to get higher education.
“I really want the government to help me to continue my education. I believe that being old does not mean that one can not go to school, so I want to meet my potential,” she says.
According to Madam Heilman, when she is given the opportunity, she wants to study general agriculture so as to help the Liberian government with her old age experience in revamping the Country’s agriculture sector.
Rebecca expresses believe that there is no limit when it comes to education, pointing out that her ambition for going to school is to give back to society and inspire her children and elderly people who have lost hope in education.She told our correspondent that her biggest challenge in high school was when she was bullied by peers and other students.However she says that did not dissuade her from forging ahead with her education.
“Once I was able to go through the walls of high school, I am able to go to University, I will not be ashamed because I know what I want to be. I want to set an example for those who think that age matters in education,” she explains further.
Vice President Jewel Howard Taylor presented a financial token to Madam Heilman as “a sign of motivation for other elderly people in society,” stating that Rebecca has shown that “she is a persevering woman and I am very proud of her.”
Serving as the keynote speaker at the graduation ceremony over the weekend, Madam Taylor indicated that she worked along with others tirelessly to get the school to where it is now.She says because of perseverance, the school has put out the first senior high school students.Vice President Taylor used the occasion to honor President George Manneh Weah for including the West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) fees in the budget which has lifted a burden off parents.
“Because our President has put the WASSCE fees in the budget as part of the government’s commitment, our children were more focused in school,” VP Taylor observes. She thanks the leadership of the school and students for their commitment and also expresses appreciation to parents for their sacrifices in supporting their children.
Madam Taylor cautions the graduating class that without education, nothing can be achieved.She tells them that having completed secondary school, it is now time that they search their inner thoughts to discover who they want to become as the next generation.By Joseph Titus Yekeryan in Bong–Edited by Winston W. Parley