Philippine Affiliation: Pampanga State Agricultural University, Pampanga
U.S. Affiliation: Castleton University, Castleton, VT
My first name is Irene Mia, however I want people to call me Mia instead of Irene. Because Irene means peace in Greek, and that’s opposite of what I am. My heart screams adventure. The comfort zone isn’t really for me. It’s always safe and peaceful there. There’s always a routine for everything. In the comfort zone, people age, but not grow.
I’m the youngest in my family, born in the 5th of July 1997. I was born with a hemi facial microsomia, Facial cleft 7. Ever since I was a kid, I have been having reconstructive surgery. When I was 4 years old, my mother died. After a couple of years, my dad decided to move to UAE with us. You can say that most of my childhood was spent abroad. I studied at Pisco Private School in Abu Dhabi from elementary till high school. I am a Filipino but Emarati at heart. Shawarma is life! Haha!
Right after I finished high school, I went back here in the Philippines to continue my studies. I enrolled at Lyceum Subic Bay, with the course Customs Ad. I entered that school not because I wanted to study there. Living abroad made me not accustomed to the Philippine culture. My aunt advised me to enter that school because it was near our house, and so that I could adjust here in the Philippines. After a semester, I moved to Pampanga.
As of the moment, I am studying Veterinary Medicine. Most vet students would say that they love animals, which is why they are taking Vet Medicine. As for me it’s the other way around. Animals love me. I was the kid who had more bullies than friends. All I had back then were my pets. They’re the reason why I’m here. Becoming an animal doctor is my way of giving back to them.