Thirty-two graduates of the Ursuline Convent said farewell to the teachers and other staffers who nurtured them over the past five years.
The students, who entered the private learning institution as “unsure pre-teens”, passed on the candle of knowledge to the fourth formers during a graduation ceremony at the school hall on Saturday.
Head of Department Dr Glenda Niles encouraged the graduates, who are moving on to the next phase of their lives, to be the best they can be.
“Success comes through discipline, and so my wish for you is that you remain disciplined as you continue your studies and move on to the world of work and make meaningful contributions to our societies.
“Let those who meet you later see who you are by the lives you live,” Niles added.
Past student and Managing Director of East Point Productions Kellie Cadogan delivered the feature address and strictly followed the students’ request of her to keep it simple and sweet.
She told the graduates “respect will take you around the world and bring you back”.
“Don’t ever underestimate the power of respect. Respect yourself, respect others and it will take you very far . . . You can go into an office, you might not have all the CXC’s or all the qualifications for it, but your attitude, your ability to say, ‘thank you sir, good morning’ . . . can sometimes get you that job over the person with qualifications.”
Cadogan went on to urge the students to follow career paths that make them happy.
“Do your joy,” she told the students.
Cadogan also advised parents in the audience to “relook how you teach your children about life”.
She also urged them to discipline their children with kindness and love, rather that with harshness.
A mother of a nine-month-old girl, Cadogan said, “we have to lead our children, but we also have to know how to do it”.
“We have to teach them how to do things. We have to reinforce consistently the importance of manners, of being good ladies, if carrying themselves well.”
Cadogan also suggested that as the graduates leave school they should acquire certain essential items, namely a visa, a manual driver’s licence, a savings account and invest in a piece of land.
“Land does not depreciate, land appreciates. It gets greater over time . . . invest in land and always have money for that rainy day,” she advised.