Despite the challenges, Pinoy graduates from Harvard Law: 'It took a lot of blood, sweat and tears' - The Daily Sentry

Despite the challenges, Pinoy graduates from Harvard Law: 'It took a lot of blood, sweat and tears'

Photo courtesy of Facebook

After a seemed endless challenges faced while taking his masters at the most prestigious Harvard University he finally overcame and succeeded. 

This is the story of Jose Angelo David, or “Anjo” to his friends, not even in his wildest dreams that he would ever at Harvard University, which he said was just so beyond his reach he “could only ever consider it fictional.”

“The idea of doing further studies in the U.S. did not cross my mind until I was already in law school,” David says in a Facebook post the day he graduated with a master's degree in law the most prestigious university in the U.S. and even the world. 
“And even then, saying that I would someday go to Harvard was something that I only made in jest. Harvard, to me, was just one of those places that existed in the pages of John Grisham and Dan Brown novels,” he added.
In an article by Manila Bulletin, “The Dean of Harvard Law School promised that we would have an in-person commencement in the future. It was not the ceremony that we anticipated but I was able to celebrate with my relatives and closest friends from school,” Jose Angelo David explained,
After acquiring a Harvard master’s degree in law is “exhilarating,” but David said there was a “heightened sense of fulfillment” having to accomplish it in the middle of a pandemic".
Harvard University opted for online classes and closed all of its school buildings in March to avoid further contamination of the pandemic coronavirus, but David was determined to fulfill the same academic requirements.
David shared that his research paper focused on the history and development of judicial review in the Philippines from the American colonial period to the current 1987 constitution.
“I naturally felt relieved when I turned in my 120-page research paper by the deadline in mid-May as it was the product of a year’s work,” he added.
The young Filipino lawyer who currently serves as a government counsel, who also teaches law at San Beda University and Far Eastern University. He finished his law degree at San Beda University and placed 6th in the 2014 bar exams.
“I owe it to our client government agencies, the public I serve, and my students to continuously improve my advocacy skills and deepen my legal knowledge. Harvard has a doctorate degree program in law. One reason why I did extensive work on my research paper is to prove myself that I can engage in more advanced legal studies,” Atty. David said.
He has been in the United States since August 2019 after successfully receiving financial grants from Harvard University.
“This is the longest that I have been abroad and away from family, and while there were some difficulties getting used to a new environment during the first few weeks, there was never a time that I felt lonely,” he said.
David survived homesickness because he said he made sure to keep in contact with his family in the Philippines. He also thanked their relatives in Massachusetts and his friends who supported his journey and helped him when he felt “emotionally drained” when his grandmother passed away in February and dormitories in Harvard closed due to the pandemic.

“All these entailed changes to our living arrangements, disruption to our academic work, and emotional adjustments. I was able to cope well with the help of my family and the company of my closest friends,” Atty. David ever grateful for all the blessings that had happened for him.