Education as a Lifeline for a Better Future

Learn about Dyana's remarkable sacrifice of using all her savings to pursue education at SIM-RMIT, recognising its potential to break the cycle of poverty and create a brighter future.

17 August 2023

Dyana's extraordinary journey is a testament to her unwavering strength and remarkable resilience in the face of overwhelming challenges. From a young age, she experienced the harsh realities of financial hardship, exacerbated by her parent's divorce and their struggle to make ends meet in a cramped one-room HDB rental flat. As a single-parent family, her mother worked long hours as a security guard to raise Dyana and her younger brother.

Amidst these hardships, Dyana faced another devastating blow when her mother was diagnosed with cancer while studying for her Diploma. Witnessing her once-strong and resilient mother battle this illness was heart-wrenching. It left an indelible mark on Dyana's spirit. Balancing her responsibilities and caring for her 10-year-old brother while pursuing her studies was a challenging juggling act. It affected her studies, and she performed poorly in her Diploma. However, as her brother grew older, his increasing independence made it slightly easier for Dyana to manage. Her family's support and her brother's low-maintenance nature allowed her to find a balance between her responsibilities and her studies.

The decision to enrol in a part-time degree programme at SIM-RMIT, despite financial hardships, was driven by Dyana's belief in the transformative power of education. She knew that education had the potential to open doors to a better future and provide opportunities for her loved ones. However, Dyana's journey was far from smooth. The COVID-19 pandemic dealt a severe blow to her income as a financial advisor, further intensifying their financial hardships. To supplement her income, she took on an exhausting 12-hour night shift job as a customer service officer, supporting the Ministry of Health's Vaccination and Testing hotline.

Despite the exhaustion and uncertainty, Dyana remained steadfast in her commitment to helping her family and pursuing her educational goals. Her outstanding contributions during the challenging pandemic period did not go unnoticed. Dyana was honoured with the prestigious Public Service Medal (COVID-19) by the Prime Minister's Office, recognising her dedication and exceptional service to the community. In June 2022, Dyana completed her Bachelor of Applied Science (Aviation) (Top-up) programme, marking a significant milestone in her journey. She currently works as a Quality Service Manager at Terra Systems, where her determination and resilience continue to shine.

Reflecting on her journey, Dyana acknowledges that there were no specific moments that stood out as transformative or inspiring. Instead, it was a combination of her upbringing and the realisation that she alone had the power to shape her future. Growing up in an unstable home environment, witnessing her mother's struggles, and taking on the responsibility of caring for her brother all contributed to her understanding that she needed to take charge of her life and remain steadfast towards her goals.

Dyana’s advice to individuals facing financial hardships or personal setbacks while pursuing an education is to prioritise improving their circumstances. She emphasises the importance of setting clear goals, conducting thorough research on available financial support options, being open to different educational paths, and cultivating a growth mindset.

As Dyana shares her experiences, she hopes to ignite a spark of motivation and resilience in others, empowering them to take action and create positive change in their lives. Dyana's unwavering strength and remarkable resilience in the face of overwhelming challenges earned her the prestigious Chairman's Award for Resilience, a well-deserved recognition of her extraordinary journey. Her story reminds us that no matter the circumstances, the human spirit can overcome and achieve great things.