“If you work hard nothing is impossible in this world.” This statement refers to a young girl who has come a long way in her life facing many hurdles to complete her pre-university course. Suman A.S., daughter of a tea vendor, managed to secure 86 per cent in II PU examinations. Suman, who studied in MES College, shared her experience on academic life.

A Spartan single-room house with a plastic chair, tailoring machine and a television is where she spent her time studying hard before finally securing a distinction in II PUC. Her main motivation to study was the difficult life her parent led just to put her through school and college. “I want to convert every rupee my father earned selling tea/coffee on the roadside to marks,” she said.

This young girl is sensitive to the problems of her family and puts her trust in hard work which she says will see her family through these tough times.

She gives full credit to her family as they have supported her throughout her trials and tribulations. Her father, A.V. Subba Rao, says that she was a bright student right from the start. “She has always proven herself at school and never disappointed us,” he said. He blames his problem on his lack of education and is, therefore, determined to ensure that his daughter is educated and leads a better life. He earns roughly Rs. 4,000 to Rs. 5,000 a month.

She is fortunate, she says, to have a mother who supported her always. “She never allowed me to do any household work as she didn't want me to lose concentration in my studies,” she said. “She is eager to become an engineer and she is the sole hope for our family, which is why I don't want to burden her with household work,” said Anitha Subba Rao, her mother. She supports the family with her tailoring skills.

Apart from being a good student, Ms. Suman is a talented artist excelling in sketching and dancing. She has danced in various programmes at school and says it keeps her engaged.

Not forgetting those who supported her, she mentioned her friends and teachers who constantly encouraged her and backed her financially. “I developed this inferiority complex within me due to poverty and problems at home. It is during this time that my teachers and friends sat beside me and helped me to overcome that depression,” Ms. Suman confessed. She dreams of becoming a successful engineer and taking over the responsibility of supporting her family.

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