Standing out above the crowd, Myrvee took home the 2016 LEAD Ambassador of the Year Award at Kent’s first ever LEAD Awards Ceremony. Eighty-two students have participated in the program since its launch in early 2016 and 12 of these students received LEAD Certificates for outstanding efforts achieving 100 points or more.
Recently, we caught up with Myrvee to find out more about how she develops her leadership skills, balances priories and stays on track with her goals.
Congratulations Myrvee, you are the 2016 Kent LEAD Ambassador of the Year! What does it mean for you to receive this award?
It’s really meaningful, I was nearly crying when I received it. This award is a reflection of my objective to help support and motivate other students to cope with studying. I know there are other deserving students so it’s a big goal achieved to be recognised by Kent as a leader in this area.
Gaining the trophy was no easy feat, you achieved a whopping 1,400 points to earn your place as the Kent LEAD Ambassador of the Year. What kind of activities did you get involved in to earn points as a LEAD student?
I really focused on getting involved on campus. Every opportunity where I could be of help, I grabbed it!
Off campus I volunteered regularly with Barnardos Australia. Through this I was able to help disadvantaged children and families and, at the same time, I connected with a diverse group of students from across Sydney who were also volunteering. Being a mother myself, it was especially meaningful for me to volunteer my efforts in Barnardos ‘Mother of the Year’ program which recognises the efforts of exceptional mothers who devote their time to helping children in need.
You are a full-time student, employee, volunteer, mother and the Student Representative for Kent’s Academic Board – how to you balance priorities in your life and stay on track with you goals?
Twenty-four hours per day is not enough! I am very busy and I have a lot of goals, but I stay on track by focusing on one priority each day. And I am very committed. I fully commit myself completing that goal.
Amongst everything that I do, my main source of income is doing cleaning and domestic services. l like to share this with students because it’s not the kind of work I originally thought I would be doing and I want to inspire people to keep reaching for their goals no matter what.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years from now?
I want to be with my family, in Australia, working in the field I have studied and running my own business. I have two sons – one in college and one in kindergarten – they are currently in the Philippines and it is my dream to have them here with me in Australia.
I also want to continue supporting international students in the future, perhaps through teaching or counselling. It’s tough being an international student – I know what it’s like to lose hope and feel like giving up. I want use the valuable things that I have learned about staying on track to help my fellow students.
You’ve be studying at Kent for 2½ years now. If you could go back in time and give some advice to yourself when you first started out on this journey, what would you say?
Accept the reality that when you come outside your own country, outside your comfort zone, you will encounter challenges. I always knew it would be challenging, but it was totally different to what I was expecting – for example, the kind of work I’m doing and the way moving countries impacted on my relationships. Genuinely accepting these challenges and facing them head-on has made me an emotionally stronger person and more mature in my relationships.
Share experiences with others
It also really helped me to talk to other international students and hear about their experiences. I learned I’m not the only one who was facing unexpected challenges.
I would also encourage myself to be patient. Australia has taught me that I have to devote ample time to have a quality output. I can’t rush the process. After 2 ½ years I finally feel like I’m gaining results for my efforts. For some it might look like little achievements, but for me it means a lot. I’m really proud of what I’ve been through and achieved.
Students interested in volunteering at Barnardo’s Australia can email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.