His impaired vision may stop Erick Marco Ramos from seeing bright light, but not from moving toward a bright future.
On April 5, Ramos, who lost his functional eyesight at 20, was among the graduates who marched from the Philippine Normal University.
Not only did he obtain a bachelor's degree on secondary education, majoring in English, but has done so with flying colors, graduating magna cum laude.
"April 5, 2013... The Big Day!!! Today, my degree will be confirmed!" Ramos said on his Facebook page.
But his diploma was not the first of his achievements, as Ramos has earlier been awarded a Fulbright scholarship, allowing him to study for a year in the U.S.
Ramos started wearing glasses when he was four and was told when he was 10 that he would eventually go completely blind. He had to quit school when he was 12.
In 2007, however, Ramos attended computer school for the blind Adaptive Technology for Rehabilitation, Integration and Empowerment of the Visually Impaired (ATRIEV).
He then decided to go pursue higher education in a regular school with classmates who are not visually impaired like him.
His disability did not stop him from joining extra-curricular activities. His is part of the college debate team and is also a creative writer.
By volunteering as teacher in ATRIEV, Ramos is also helping others who are blind like him get education and computer training.
Philippine President Benigno Aquino is to seek more aid when he meets with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe this week, more than a month after a monster typhoon killed thousands and left millions homeless. Aquino and Abe are expected to witness the signing of "exchanges of notes", including a post-disaster standby loan worth about 10 billion yen ($100 million), foreign office spokesman Raul Hernandez said Monday. "During the meeting the two leaders will discuss cooperation on disaster …