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Graduating student sells graham balls to finance thesis, medication

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A 4th year college student battling atelectasis is supporting his own studies and medication by selling graham balls.

Francis Noel Soledad, a print media technology student at the Technological University of the Philippines, would set up his ambulant store at a nearby university, Universidad de Manila. He sells different flavors of graham balls for P80.

In a Facebook post, he shared that he has been selling since 1st year college and was even dubbed “Mini Puregold” for this. “Pero yun ang isa sa dahilan bakit ako naka-survive sa una kong taon sa kolehiyo,” he said.

He has since experienced more challenges in life, including his condition.

In an old Facebook post, he shared that he has a serious lung condition. “Ito yung humahadlang sakin para gawin talaga yung bagay na gusto ko sa buhay,” he said.

Despite this, Noel has no intention of giving up especially now that he is almost at the finish line.

“Ngayon 4th yr college na ako, wala na akong ibang way or chance kundi magtinda ng Graham Balls, sa kahit saan. Aminado ko na muka akong kawawa kapag namamalimos ako sa paghingi sa mga taong diko kilala. Kaya ito kahit maliit kita, makipag laro sa panahon gagawin ko, para lang matapos ko kung ano yung nasimulan ko,” he said.

“Kasi kahit ikamatay ko yung sakit ko, mag-drama ako nang ilan beses sa social media. Ayos lang basta, ‘Mananatili akong naka tindig para maabot ko yung mga Pangarap ko.'”

A netizen has noticed his hard work and shared his story on Facebook. “Baka sakaling magawi po kayo sa bandang gilid ng Unibersidad De Manila (UDM) sa side na malapit sa LRT 1 Central Station at madaanan niyo po si Noel at ang mga paninda niyang graham balls na masarap sa tiyan at puso,” Josephine Pontillas said in a post that has gained over 74k shares.

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