There was a point in Margielyn Didal’s life when she would always skip her classes just so she could go to the park and learn the tips and tricks of skateboarding—not exactly the type of teenager people expect to be hailed a role model for others her age, even more so by one of the world’s most dominant magazines.
However, the 19-year-old skater from Cebu just did. After making her country proud as a gold medalist in the recently concluded 2018 Asian Games, Margielyn was named by America’s leading magazine Time as one of the Most Influential Teens of 2018, even calling her a “national hero”.
“This summer, the 19 year old from Cebu City, Philippines, won the gold medal in the women’s street skateboarding competition at the Asian Games—and became a national hero in the process,” wrote Time on Margielyn’s recent achievement.
This year, Margielyn joins fellow athletes French footballer Kylian Mpabbe and American snowboarder Chloe Kim, as well as international artists Millie Bobby Brown, Joey King, Kiernan Shipka, Storm Reid, and K-pop group NCT Dream in the list.
In 2017, Time named beauty vlogger Bretman Rock and young activist Shibby de Guzman as two of their 25 Most Influential Teens, an annual list that they base largely on their achievements, popularity and impact on the society as a whole.