Prep graduation delivers important messages

The Year 11 graduating class of the academic year 2005-2006 graduated from Cayman Prep and High School last Thursday evening.

The Year 13 A-level students also received leaving certificates.

The graduation featured several keynote speakers, including Reverend Joseph Crawford, minister at Elmslie Memorial United Church, and John Bothwell, research officer at the Department of the Environment.

The Year 13 leaving address was presented by Melanie McTaggart, last year’s Head Girl of the school and the chairman of the evening’s proceedings.

Miss McTaggart presented an eloquent speech regarding heroes, and the different definitions the term hero can carry.

‘Our world is built on heroes,’ she said. She proceeded to thank CPHS’s teachers for being the heroes of the student body throughout their time at the school.

Mr. Crawford similarly commended the teachers at CPHS.

‘Recently there was an international incident, where part of the Israeli army went into the Gaza strip to save a 19-year old soldier,’ he said.

‘This one solder meant so much to an entire army; an entire country. This reminded me very much of the philosophy of CPHS, who make sure that no child is left behind.’

Mr. Bothwell, a former CPHS student, gave a refreshing speech aimed at the young people graduating that evening.

‘Everything you do now is preparing yourself for the future. Your dad telling you not to slouch but to sit up straight was preparing you for the off-chance of getting asked to speak at Prep graduation in 15 years’ time,’ he joked.

Mr. Bothwell also emphasised that work can be fun, and should be done for enjoyment as much as for financial success.

‘I worked hard to be a marine biologist so that I went diving last Tuesday and got to call it work,’ he said.

‘If you find yourself leaning towards jobs that don’t traditionally pay that much, don’t worry about it. It will mean much more to you to have a job you enjoy.’

The graduation also encompassed a prizegiving ceremony for Years 7-10. Awards were given for academic achievement and also for responsibility within a tutor group.

For Year 7, Juliana Creary, Julian Solomon and Toby Sutton received the awards for responsibility within a tutor group. Amber Martinez and Bianca Alberga received the same awards in Year 8 while Kirstie McMillan and Breanne Gill won for Year 9. Erin Hislop and Ainjalia Schvartz received the honour for Year 10.

The junior choir and chamber choir performed songs such as Linstead Market and the popular Lean on Me accompanied by music teacher Catherine Boyd-Moss.

The Outstanding Student in Year 13 award was presented to Jamie McDowall and was collected on his behalf by his younger sister Jessica, who donned a red baseball cap for the occasion.

Jamie had already departed for the United States Air Force Academy, and so was unable to attend graduation.

The House Trophy, which was awarded to Redpath house, was collected by graduating class members in Redpath to much applause and cheering.

The night was one of many memories for graduating students, and Catherine Hinds, Lauren Moore and Godfrey Johnson gave a touching Year 11 Graduates’ Address together.

For Year 13, the majority are headed off to renowned universities worldwide for further study.

Melanie McTaggart will be attending the University of Pennsylvania, Lori-Ann Speirs was accepted into the Savannah College of Art in Georgia, Rory Reid is going to the University of the West Indies in Jamaica and Tonicia Williams was accepted into Queen Mary and Kingston in the UK.