Skip to content

Filipino “Sponge Boy” Receives Scholarship from China

  • by

  • Melvin Chua, a.k.a “sponge boy” has received a scholarship that would allow him to go to China for his Master’s Degree.
  • After Chua’s story went viral and had inspired millions, he is now taking his life one step further.
  • His perseverance and efforts are now paying off.

MANILA, PHILIPPINES – Melvin Chua, 23, known affectionately as “sponge boy” in the urban streets of Pembo in the Philippines’ capital city Manila, is one of the 79 Philippine students who will take up their studies in several universities in China. 

Chua is an embodiment of inspiration. After 13 years of selling dish sponges on the streets, he was able to receive his college degree from University of Makati back in April. Now, the streets of Beijing await him.

Mr Melvin Chua, also known as "sponge boy", used to walk the streets of Pembo in Manila for more than six hours every day selling dish sponges and dish cleaners to support his family.
Via Rappler/Screen-grabbed from Youtube

Despite a childhood full of trials and poverty, Chua did not give up on his schooling. Despite being the breadwinner for their family, he rearranged his schedule just to accommodate his classes in the morning and his hustle in the afternoon. 

Though, he did admit that he struggled juggling with his schedule once he reached college. In an interview with Rappler, he would work the whole day on weekends to earn his allowance and to buy more dish sponges.

Via Melvin Chua’s Facebook Page

Chua got into Remin University of China, to take up a master’s degree in Business administration. In an interview with The Straits Times, he expressed that Remin University because it “has a very good reputation so I really chose the university because I can feel in myself that Renmin can transform me personally and professionally.”

He took to social media to express his gratitude to his customers who have helped him reach his dreams and for the outpour of support. Soon, he had noticed an advertisement for scholarships by the Chinese government. He applied for it and passed the selection process.

“This is something new to me, I didn’t know this before. Every time I move forward, like when I pass the interview… it gives me so much hope. But the process is not easy. They require time and effort. But it’s worth it.”

Sources: The Straits Times, Rappler


Join our Facebook Community and meet with fellow educators. Share and download teaching materials. Get important updates and read inspiring stories.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *