Sobina's Universal Appeal
Author: Sobina Yu
Sobina Yu In Her Own Wonderful Words
Our latest Eduzine Global Young Ambassador is Sobina Yu, an ardent astronomy lover from the Philippines. Sobina told Eduzine her own remarkable and heart-warming story and appeals to our other Ambassadors and readers for support. Welcome to Sobina, from all the Eduzine Global family. Enjoy the beautiful words of Sobina:
My name is Maria Sobina Yu, though people usually call me by the name Sobina which is often shortened to Bina by my circle of good friends. As you can probably tell by the name that I am authorized to carry, I am Chinese. As a Chinese kid, I am expected to follow the footsteps of my parents on their business career, which is something I know deep down, I will never achieve. My family (I have a sister and we’re 4 in total including my parents; pictured below) loves me and I love them in return. Although I belong to a family where expression of emotions are not prevalent, I have never been hungry nor had no clothes to wear. Although I can’t really say that I belong to a family who’s proud and accepting of me, I can say that I belong to a caring family who will give me the best part of a venison to feast on and who will give me the best silk to wear.
I never had the easy and graceful way my sister pronounces Chinese phrases, nor did I have the exceptional scores in Chinese that she can usually achieve easily and without any hindrance. This unlikely circumstance has ended in a long-lasting feud between me and my parents, which jeopardized our usually happy and normal relationship. For once, things got worse when I told my parents that I don’t want to pursue music any more than I want to return to China after I graduate college here in the Philippines. Now this left our relationship hanging. Please don’t get me wrong, as my parents aren’t cruel. On the contrary, they are actually religious and benevolent people. My parents will bring me to church every Sunday, and together with the guiding light of the Holy Spirit, I will pray and venerate with them. What actually happened to our relationship is this. My father is a musician, and on the early point of my life, I used to follow his footsteps as a musician. That is, I will sing and play the piano with him. However, as time goes by, I noticed that music in particular wouldn’t help me satiate this “hunger” circulating within me and that I couldn’t also explain.
Then, the biggest turning point on my life happened. I told them that I don’t want to pursue music anymore and I want to go after science instead. Well this badly angered my parents. Although I have garnered numerous local awards from the fields of science, they never agreed to fetch nor help me. This injured me so much that it left me a scar that couldn’t possibly be erased no matter what. However, looking at the positive side, my life at my home inspired me overall to be better. It ignites me to be more resilient, more mature, and more passionate. My parents explained to me the reason why they don’t want me to enter the world of STEM. According to their account, STEM doesn’t produce enough money to suffice the needs of a growing family once I have a family of my own in the future. Actually their account lies some unfavorable truth in it. STEM here in the Philippines are so poor and degrading that those who have graduated a course for scientists will often end up as a call center agent or as a teacher instead. My parents love me so much that they want me to change my route while I’m still young so that in the future, I won’t encounter any financial hardships.
As time goes by, I found myself drawn to the various branches of STEM. I gradually became interested with how the cosmos and nature work. I realized that I want to become an astronaut more than I want to become a businesswoman, which I know piqued my parents more than I could possibly imagined. When I told my parents that I wanted to pursue science as my main career, their response was negative. From that day onwards, I knew that I am alone in my voyage, with no one there to help me aside from my ever supporting friends who are more than willing to help me in any ways possible.
As I began my journey to my dreams, one thing in particular caught my attention. That is, not many Filipinos realized and acknowledged the importance of science, especially astronomy. The problem with us humans is that we mostly want something if there’s money in return, without us realizing that this greed could possibly lead to our own destruction. With this unfavorable situation I am presented with, I am suddenly filled with the motivation to preach to the entire nations of China and the Philippines that STEM is important and not futile as most people probably thought it is. I became the youngest and a fully-fledged member of the Astronomical League of the Philippines (ALP), wherein we cater and focus on the practical side of astronomy, such as the operation of telescopes. Then, I joined the Philippine Astronomical Society, wherein we help Filipinos indulge in astronomy and we help astronomy grow throughout the country. Finally, last April, I entered the Astronomers without Borders wherein we have a vision of one people, one sky. All of these happened without my parents knowing it, up to this day. I know that joining different clubs will not be enough for people to see my goal, so I created a lot of websites that could aid me in my journey.
With the help of Mr. Richard Pearson, I became an ambassador for our blog dedicated to Sir Patrick Moore. I then became an associate editor at the “Astronomy & Space” page at Facebook. I flooded my Twitter account with Astronomy related posts. My personal blog “The Cosmic Wanderer” is still under my own scrutiny and I will release it if and when it satisfies my own expectations. I know that all of these actions alone are not enough. I also know that my efforts could just be in vain. With this in mind, I would want to humbly ask my fellow Eduzine Global Young Ambassadors and readers of Eduzine Global for your help, to help me pursue my goal, for people to realize the importance of STEM to our society and to the evolution of humankind. It is in my own volition that I would want these things to happen. No one is forcing me to do these things.
This is my story which directed my relationship with my parents for years now. Aside from my plea for the advancements of astronomy here in the Philippines, I used to advocate the importance of our generation’s voices to be heard. Most people view our generation as sloth, destructive, or futile, but I believe that this is not it. I know that each living individual has their own meaningful story to share but they are just waiting for their own battles to cease. I hope that other people will see the beauty in each living individual too.
I don’t know why but for some reason unbeknownst to me, it just always hit me hard when people constantly say that, “Eh you’re just a girl,” “You’re so young, what can you possibly do,” “Why won’t you study your Chinese instead of memorizing the names of the stars?” I am just forlorn because, the night sky is for everyone to relish and to grasp, but it seems like few people even acknowledge it in the very first place. I would want people to feel the solace that I’d felt when I first encountered the night sky in solitude. I know that I am not alone in my journey anymore because of the clubs that I am in and because of others such as the Eduzine Global family. With this, I would want to ask your help to help me reach my goals.
Thank you all and have a good day.
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Author: Sobina Yu
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