Minister of Tourism and International Transport, Richard Sealy, has advised the 2013 graduating class of the Welches Primary School, to remain focussed and to build on the solid foundation laid by their teachers.
He made this observation Tuesday while delivering the feature address at the school’s graduation and prize giving ceremony at the 3W’s Oval, University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus.
Sealy said: “Remain focussed and let these qualities serve as a firm foundation because that would mould you into a leader for tomorrow… I can assure you that what you have learnt in your time spent at Welches, will be effective building blocks in your lives.”
He added that the journey … and all the future successes to which he referred … would also depend on the choices they made.
“It is important that as you move on to another phase, that you have the right attitude make the right choices,” he told his audience.
The minister also reminded the students that everyone had made mistakes in their lives and cautioned that what was extracted from those blunders would determine their future.
Sealy cited as an early example the recent arrest of international National Football League player Aaron Hernandez, who had just lost a US$40 million football contract stating that the sportsman’s mistake had been a costly one.
“People will give you a chance [because] that is the type of world that we live in. So, the lesson from Mr. Hernandez is that you choose to be a leader and not a follower. As the principal said, don’t always look to trample the beaten track… You can blaze your own trail. If you are a follower, you will follow a blind leader… [but] being a leader calls for having confidence in yourself and thinking things out before acting upon them,” Sealy emphasised.
Of the 27 students who took this year’s Barbados Secondary Schools’ Entrance Examination, Odean Briscoe, was the top male and he will be heading to Alexandra come September; while the top female was Christina Highland, who will be entering Queen’s College.
Meanwhile, in her report, Principal Patricia Lovell, offered advice to the students on how to be successful at secondary school and other areas of life.
“Wear the new uniform with pride,” she said. “Be the best that you can be. Meet the deadlines for handing in assignments. It might be the defining point between an ‘A’ or an ‘E’.
“Set the example. Don’t follow the crowd! The beaten path is not always the best choice. Be discerning in all you do. It is easy to lose you good reputation but extremely difficult to regain it.”