Ellaine Joy Calapao Sanidad, a proud Cordilleran has earned the highest honor distinction at the prestigious University of Oxford in the United Kingdom on December 2, 2021.
Sanidad, a native of San Isidro, Abra, finished her Master of Studies in Diplomatic Studies from the prestigious university.
She was able to pursue her master's education abroad through the Chevening scholarship in 2020 after many failed attempts. The Abrenian thanked everyone who supported her on her journey, including herself.
"First of all, always the Almighty God. Next, my family, relatives, friends, teachers and mentors, former colleagues and bosses, people who always believed in me," she said in an exclusive interview with Interaksyon. "I have always been too hard on myself, and it was only recently that I learned how important it is to give myself a tap once in a while for being able to put up with the ever-ambitious, difficult me."
Her Oxford achievement is already her second master's degree, after taking up her Master of Arts in Speech Communication at the University of the Philippines Los Baños. She also graduated magna cum laude from the same state university in 2010.
She was also the valedictorian in both her elementary and high schools, at San Isidro Central School and Immaculate Conception Academy in Batac, Ilocos Norte, respectively.
Sanidad also worked as a professor at the University of the Philippines and as Chief Intelligence Analyst at the National Coast Watch Center which is under the Office of the President.
As someone who had to overcome hurdles and strive through failures to secure her scholarship, Sanidad's advice to those who are dreaming of studying abroad is: "Think of Oxford as just any other university abroad. Considering it as an unreachable university won't help you get there. However, that doesn't mean working less towards getting there.
"Learn to always give your best in every endeavor you take, because only with giving your best could you get the best reward."
Since 2017, Oxford University has been ranked first on the Times Higher Education World University Rankings. For the first time in five years, this was the school to remain number one. Third place went to Harvard, while the second went to Stanford.
Sanidad will officially graduate next year on March 12, 2022, with the Oxford degree and award.