From left: Ariel Lin Hsuan, CJC principal Christina Kong and Christina Wang.From left: Ariel Lin Hsuan, CJC principal Christina Kong and Christina Wang.

Two Catholic Junior College (CJC) students faced major challenges in their lives – but overcame them to score in the A Level exams.

Ariel Lin Hsuan, who arrived in Singapore from her native Taiwan in 2007 with her family, is one such inspiring story.

Despite not being able to speak much English, the permanent resident persevered in her studies.

The Arts student, who took History, Economics and Chinese Literature as her core subjects, was preparing to take her A Levels in 2011 when her mother was diagnosed with third-stage cancer.

Her father was overseas for work then and her brother, who had obtained Singapore citizenship, was serving national service.

“I was the only one left to take care of my mother and I decided that the only way I could care for my mother was to leave school,” she shared. “I felt bitter at the time but later I reflected and I decided that nothing is more important than family.”

Lin was able to rejoin CJC in 2012 as her mother’s condition improved. She went on to take her A Levels and scored four As and a B.

“It was with the help of my teachers who prayed for me, encouraged me and showed a lot of tolerance that I was able to complete my examinations,” she said.

Lin added that she plans to study either psychology or business.

Another inspiring story is Christina Wang who scored four As.

The Science student was former vice president of the school councillors at CHIJ St Theresa’s Convent and captain of the CJC hockey team,

“In primary school, I failed most subjects and it was only in Pri Five that I started to work hard,” she shared. “It was due to my mum who is a single parent. It was her self-sacrifice that motivated me.”

The former CHIJ (Kellock) student, who went on to study at St Theresa’s, said she was grateful to her schools for all the opportunities she has received.

Wang, who said she has never had tuition, added that she is interested in pursuing accountancy, economics or business.

By Don Gurugay

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