Graduation Nights - Transition Year and Graduating Leaving Certs
30th May 2011
T.Y. Graduation night.
On Wednesday, May 25th, we gathered in the Junior Hall for theT.Y.s graduation ceremony. Our excellent comperes for the night were Ashling Hayes and Niamh Seward who got things under way by inviting us to watch a slideshow organised by Una Nugent which showed the many highlights of their year.
MC's Niamh Seward and Aisling Hayes.
They then introduced T.Y. coordinator, Mrs. Anne Stack who outlined the very many activities, new subjects etc. experienced by the girls during the year. As well as having the opportunity to try out different subjects, they also had two periods of work experience, went on various trips, educational and adventurous and of course, performed the highly successful “Flashmob” in Heuston station and Dublin airport at the behest of Waterford Co. Council as part of their new tourism drive. She acclaimed their very many achievements as evidenced by the folder of certificates they earned.
She thanked principal, Mrs Hughes and Vice principal, Mrs Colette Power for their support and also Mr. Tommy Collins who helped organise many events during the year. She also thanked tutors Mr. Declan O’Keeffe and Mrs Eibhlin Power and all the teachers who contributed to this very successful year. She commended the girls on the many fundraising events they had organised and the girls then presented a cheque to Mr. John Moran of the W.W. hospice Support Group, one of the charities they had supported this year. Mr. Moran thanked the girls for the continuing support of the Ard Scoil girls for this very worthy cause. Among other events, the girls had also run cake sales in aid of the Alzheimer’s Society.
Vice Principal Mrs Colette Power presents cheque, on behalf of the students to Mr.John Moran of the W.W. Hospice Support Group.
Mrs Stack then asked Mr O’Keeffe to present the E.C.D.L. awards. The European Computer Driving Licence is an optional course which is very self driven. There are seven different exams for which the girls must study and then take in their own time. They can practice at home and have three years to complete all exams. This year the girls did exceptionally well, with seventeen of them completing the course and receiving their diplomas from Mr. O’Keeffe. Some of the exams are quite technically complex and more girls will come into school this week to take exams and receive their diplomas. This is a widely recognised course and will be an important item in their CV's. Mr. O’Keeffe also reminded us that the girls had taken part in the Intel “Buddy” programme where they shared their knowledge with retirees and taught them computer skills.
E.C.D.L. graduates with I.T. coordinator Mr. Declan O'Keeffe and T.Y. coordinator, Mrs Anne stack.
Our M.C.s then called on Ms. Emillie Pickering to present the Gaisce medals. These are for completing all the tasks necessary to earn the Bronze Gaisce, or President’s, medal. Ms Pickering spoke of the fun they had on the overnight hike and adventures in Wicklow where they were also accompanied by Ms. Ciara O’Shea. Ms. Pickering congratulated the girls for accomplishing the various modules and presented medals to fifteen of the students. Other girls will receive their medals in a few weeks... they just hadn’t submitted their cards in time.
Mrs. Stack and Ms Emillie Pickering with those awarded the Gaisce Bronze medal.
Sarah Crotty and Amy O’Brien then entertained us with a very amusing account of the year, the surfing trips, horse riding, a visit to U.C.C., the adventures in Wicklow, the ceilidh with their counterparts in the C.B.S. and of course the great fun they had preparing for and performing the “Flashmob”! Mrs. Stack and Mr. Collins then presented the students with their portfolio of awards for Fist Aid, Toastmasters, Food Safety among many.
Amy O' Brien and Sarah Crotty recount the year's exploits.
T.Y. 2011 students with Mrs Anne Stack and Mr. Tommy Collins.
Principal, Mrs. Dorothy Hughes then addressed the audience, congratulating the girls and their parents for their many achievements. She thanked the staff for their support of and involvement in the programme, especially Mrs. Stack who makes it run so smoothly. She invited the guests to enjoy the refreshments in the cookery kitchen where we could enjoy the delicious treats baked earlier by the T.Y. students.
The girls presented a beautiful bouquet to Mrs. Stack and gifts to their tutors and an exceptional cake to Mr. Collins! They then sang their version of “Today, I don’t feel like doing anything”!!!! and we watched a video of their “Flashmob” performance before adjourning to the kitchen to partake of the refreshments.
T.Y.student April O'Brien presents a bouquet to Mrs Anne Stack, course coordinator.
Leaving Certs Graduation.
On Thursday evening, members of the school community gathered in the Friary Church for the Leaving Certs. Graduation Mass which was celebrated by Fr. Flor O’Callaghan. The altar was decorated with a beautiful banner the art students had painted which showed the theme they had chosen, “Mostly we don’t remember the days, We remember the moments”.
Following the entrance hymn, “As I kneel before you” Samantha Hayes welcomed her classmates, their families, the Mercy sisters, members of the Parents’ Council and staff. After the Penitential Rite, Roisin Cleary gave the first Reading. The responsorial psalm was sung by Zoe Scanlon, Nicola Coffey, Jane O’Brien, Rebecca Hodnett and Niamh Kiely. And then Claire Collins delivered the second reading.
Fr. Flor, as usual, gave a wonderful homily, which he always pitches perfectly for his listeners although it didn’t last the hour he had promised! He introduced the ceremony of light after the reading of the Gospel. Year Head Mrs. Jean O’Donovan, Parent, Mrs Bernadette O’Keeffe, First year student Emma Buckley, Doireann O’Keeffe, Mary O’Leary and Anna Whelan, B.O.M. member Mrs. Mairin de Burca offered the girls the light of wisdom, of love, of memory and of faith.
The prayers of the faithful were read by Niamh, Amy Duggan, Lisa Buckley, Orla Queally, Rebecca Yellop, Grainne Dwyer,and Elaine Duff. The Offertory procession was commented by Lucy Whelan while Natalie Wancerz, Aoife Moore, Roisin Tobin, Keely Cummins and Sarah Coward Brought gifts to the altar. The choir, directed by music teacher Mrs Ciara Lucey, sang Siyahamba and Ave Maria. Musicians Frances Fitzgerald, keyboard and harp, Claire Collins, flute, and Eilis O’Keeffe and Aoife Hayes on guitar added to the wonderful occasion. During the Communion reflection, Megan Daly, Rebecca Maher and Sarah Glasscott looked back over their years in the Ard Scoil, years which seem to have flown by so swiftly.
Principal Mrs. Hughes addressed the congregation and thanked Fr. Flor, the religion teachers, Ms. Helen Cotter, Ms. Ciara O’Shea and Mrs Ciara Lucey. She also thanked Mrs. Lucey, her choir and musicians for the inspirational music; she thanked the parents and the parents’Council for their support over the years and wished the girls every success and happiness in their future lives. Following the closing prayer, the choir lead all in singing “The Scientist”.
We returned to the school where our inimitable Parents’ Council had a wonderful spread of refreshments ready for us. We must express our thanks for theit continuous support of the school and their help at so many school events. The girls watched a slide show, recalling many memories which was compiled by Louise Hyslop and Natalie Wancerz before they transformed out of uniform into very glamorous young ladies and headed in to town.