Young and Successful Filipino Achievers

Inspired by those who have limited access to electricity, 17-year old Angelo Casimiro developed an innovation that converts foot pressure into energy. This invention was accepted into Google’s 2014 Science Fair, a gathering of the world’s brightest young minds. Last year, Angelo also received buzz from international tech magazines for his latest project, the life-sized replica of Star Wars: The Force Awakens lovable droid BB-8 made completely out of household materials.

Now a Physics major at De La Salle University, Angelo continues to tinker and explore to find solutions to pressing social problems. Like any teenager, he’s also using his passion for the sciences for fun, and as a way to encourage his peers to embrace curiosity and ingenuity in their daily lives.

Even as a young girl, Rachel de Villa began envisioning how to make the world a better place by taking up Computer Science in college and focusing on the integration of technology and design to improve crucial aspects of Filipino life including education, agriculture, and health services. Rachel envisioned a world where farmers are debt-free, dignified, and empowered, leading her to establish Cropital, a social enterprise that aims to provide local farmers access to scalable and sustainable financing. It is no wonder Rachel was included in Forbes’ 2016 30 Under 30 Asia as one of today’s most impressive youth.

Kelsey Merritt didn’t originally intend to become a model, but photos of her caught the eye of scouts from the prestigious international talent agency Wilhelmina Models. She has now appeared on covers and editorials for Nylon and Harper’s Bazaar, as well as global fashion and beauty campaigns for Uniqlo, Steve Madden, Shiseido, Missguided, and Vera Wang. Kelsey maintains a professional approach to modeling and always goes for her full 100% and beyond.

James Reid started out as the Big Winner of Pinoy Big Brother: Teen Clash in 2010, a venue that opened up a lot of opportunities for James. Show business, however, reacquainted him with music, a childhood passion that gave him renewed purpose and direction. Now, he has two studio albums and is growing into a capable actor. His latest film with on- and off-screen sweetheart and fellow Yumbassador Nadine Lustre opened to an impressive Php15 million at the box office.

Francis Flores, Head of Marketing and Global Brand Chief Marketing Officer of Jollibee Philippines, says, “This year’s batch of Yumbassadors is proof of how millennials are: passionate, driven and determined, and always going for the best. This generation, the Gen Y or #ProudGenYum, are impressive individuals and each of them are out to change the world.”

Fourth Impact conquered London’s Wembley Stadium when they audition for the British X Factor. Almira (28), Irene (26), Mylene (24), and Celina (20) Cercado are veterans of local singing contests and have represented the country in the World Championships of Performing Arts. However, their pop dream remained elusive in the Philippines, propelling them to join the popular South Korean talent show, Superstar K6. It’s an ongoing journey to success for the Cercado sisters and they are not giving up on the dream to conquer the world with their amazing talent, determination, and Filipino pride.

Christopher Valentin received a full scholarship from the Far Eastern University (FEU) to study Psychology as his pre-med course. However, a full ride is not enough to pay for the day-to-day expenses of a college student. To make ends meet, Christopher sold customized t-shirts to his classmates and peers, tutored fellow students, and transcribed data for a drug company. He graduated Summa cum Laude from FEU, which became his ticket to a tuition-free medicine degree. The soon-to-be doctor believes that good health should not be a privilege and that every Filipino has a right to it. In the future, Christopher dreams of making quality health care services more accessible to the urban poor.


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