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Ulirang Panganay: A viral post showing sacrifice as she paying off for siblings tuition fees

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  • Ghel Martinez’s viral post shows the sacrifice and love an eldest sibling can do
  • She sacrificed her own dreams in favor of pushing her younger siblings to pursue their own
  • Martinez worked odd job after odd job until she managed to have two of her siblings finish college

This is a story of an ulirang panganay and how her sacrifices paved the way for her siblings’ success.

“You didn’t get to graduate but you made someone graduate”

This was how Ghel Martinez captioned her sign in her viral Facebook post, as she shared her story about how she supported the education of her two younger siblings who graduated from college.

An Urilang Panganay’s Inspiring Story

According to her interview with, Martinez told that her sister Abigail graduated last year with a Bachelor of Science degree in Architecture from the Laguna State Polytechnic University.

And this year, her brother Vergel graduated with a degree in Accountancy from the Dalubhasaan ng Lungsod ng San Pablo.

via Ghel Martinez’ Facebook Post

She said that she looked at their photo holding a note with the course they finished, “the memories just came rushing back.”

In the photo, she held her own sign that read: “You didn’t get to graduate but you made someone graduate.”

Narrating her story, she said that she found herself providing for her family early on. Her father didn’t have a permanent job while her mother was a housewife. She said being the eldest among six children pushed her to take on various jobs right after high school.

Although she wanted to take up BS Criminology, she postponed her studies to support her siblings who were also going college.

“I didn’t want them to go through my experience of not having money for a cold drink or for photocopies. That’s why I made it my goal for my siblings fulfil their dream,” she said. 

With that mindset, Martinez took on different kinds of jobs. Starting off as a service crew member of a fast food chain, she quickly realized that the measly salary won’t sustain her sibling’s studies. So, she applied as a call center agent.

“On my first day at the call center, I almost give up because I was embarrassed. My fellow employees laughed at me because of my accent.”

Martinez met the challenge by studying and learning call center skills.

And while she hustled as a call center agent, she didn’t stop taking various other side jobs like designing event places, and recycling bottles before selling them to the junk shop. She even joined office contests to boost her budget.

“I remember well how I bought my sister’s T-square for her architectural studies. I won in a pageant even though I didn’t have a talent. I did a fire breathing presentation.”

She moved to a bigger call centre company which offered a bigger opportunity. She got promoted to team leader, quality analyst, product trainer, then to assistant manager.

Martinez admits that what she went through was not easy, but she made sure that her siblings were able to pay their school fees on time and at times, ahead of the deadline.

All the sacrifice of Martinez paid off when her siblings graduated, with one even finishing as cum laude.

“I am very lucky with my siblings. I will never regret making you my priority,” she added.


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