On June 20th, in a packed Loyola Hall, Year 11 and 13 students celebrated their graduation from St. Ignatius Catholic School. Supported by friends, family, and members of the school and church community, the graduates received certificates reflecting their completion of the IGCSE or A Level programmes. The Year 11 certificates were presented by Reverend Canon Joseph Mallia, Pastor of St. Frances Cabrini Parish in Allen Park, Michigan. While the Year 13 certificates were presented by the Premier, Hon. W. McKeeva Bush.
A number of students also received individual prizes for outstanding achievement. The Year 11 Chamber of Commerce Student of the Year Award was presented by His Excellency, the Governor, Mr. Duncan Taylor, to Prateek Jagadeesh. Prateek graduated with a 4.16 grade point average, won five subject awards and took part in a wide variety of extra-curricular activities throughout Years 10 and 11. Prateek was also awarded the Ernst and Young Achievement Award for Academic Excellence 2012. Mr. Jeff Short of Ernst and Young presented him with a beautiful framed certificate and a cheque for $1000.
In Year 11, The Principal’s Award for the Student Who Best Fosters Christian Ethos was awarded to Alexandra Anglin. The Paul Howard Memorial Award for Excellence in Sport was presented to William Hayward. Aaron Santamaria received the Carole Cameron Award for Greatest Progress from the Chairman of the School Advisory Board, Mr. Gerry Kirkconnell. Mrs. Jordana Clark presented Sydonie Barrett and Ann-Alecia Moore with the Home School Association Community & School Service Award for their outstanding contributions to a multitude of activities. Gianna Bolen earned the National Gallery Award for High School Visual Arts Achievement. Father Paul Coutinha, Pastor of St. Ignatius, presented Perfect Attendance awards to Courtney Couch, Chynna Retumban, Shaquille Morgan, Tyler Ramoon, and Deandra Thompson-Ebanks. Chelsea Ebanks was awarded a scholarship from the Fr. John Power Memorial Basketball League in Colorado for her excellent attitude in the area of sports.
Year 11 subject prizes were presented to Prateek Jagadeesh (History, Mathematics, Science, English Literature, Business Studies), Ronan Jennings (Music, English Language), Natasha Alagaratnam (Religious Education), Aisling Fleming (ICT), Lisa Evans (Art), Daniel Watler (Spanish), Ann-Alecia Moore (French), Danielle Boothe (Geography), and William Hayward (Physical Education).
Year 13 student Asaph Scott won the Chamber of Commerce Sixth Form Award for Highest Academic Attainment. Head Girls Danielle Borden and Kelcey Huggins shared the Chamber of Commerce Sixth Form Award for Contribution to the Life of the School, which was presented by the Minister for Education, the Honourable Rolston Anglin, and Kelcey was also presented with the Principal’s Award for the Sixth Form Student who Best Fosters the school’s Christian Ethos. The Appleby Law Prize was presented to Anthony Hurlston by Mr. Richard Addlestone. It was also announced that Anthony had been awarded a three-year academic scholarship from Appleby to further his studies in law. The KPMG Accounting Prize was presented to Danielle Borden by Ms. Lynn Merizalde-Orobio. Appleby and KPMG were also thanked for their ongoing generous sponsorships to the school’s Law and Accounting programmes.
Year 13 subject awards were awarded to Asaph Scott (Chemistry, Physics, Further Mathematics), Kelcey Huggins (Geography, Spanish), Leslie Anderson (Music, French), Anthony Hurlston (English Literature, ICT), Danielle Borden (History, Business Studies), Sasha Veeran (Biology, Mathematics), and Kimberly Carlos (Religious Studies).
Rev. Canon Mallia gave the graduation address. He told the students how important it was that they were aware that they didn’t just graduate, but they were able to graduate from a Catholic school. He cited Pope Benedict’s words that “the essential task of authentic education at every level is not simply that of passing on knowledge, essential as this is, but also of shaping hearts.” He challenged the graduates to continue to be thinkers and not just to accept everything they hear, especially in the world of technology. At the end of his address Fr. Mallia presented Head of School Mr. Tom McGrath with a beautiful gift; a statue of the Blessed Lady, on behalf of his school in Michigan.
In his address, Mr. Peter Embleton, Head of Secondary, outlined the progress made by the school this year, including its significant developments in the use of Technology, and also praised staff and students for their hard work and commendable external examination results, especially at A level. He then highlighted the many achievements of the Year 11 and 13 students in the areas of academics, sport, music, drama, community service, fundraising, and much more. He also recognized the significant leadership role of the Head Prefects, Danielle Borden and Kelcey Huggins, as well as all of the Sixth Form prefects for their positive contributions to the life of the school.
The student addresses were given by Danielle and Kelcey (Year 13) and Sydonie Barrett (Year 11). The speeches highlighted memorable moments of their years at St. Ignatius as well as thanking their parents and teaching staff for their ongoing support and guidance. The girls also reminded the audience of the benefits of the positive opportunities provided to them at St. Ignatius, including the many wonderful overseas field trips experienced this year.
In addition to speeches and the presentation of certificates and prizes, the graduation ceremony also included musical items from the school’s Training Band, conducted by Mr. Ian Emerson, and the Steel Band led by Mr. Michael LeMay. Following a closing prayer by Father Alex Crasta and the singing of the National Song, the happy graduates joined staff, family and friends at the post-graduation reception in the school canteen.
“The essential task of authentic education at every level is not simply that of passing on knowledge, essential as this is, but also of shaping hearts.”