Last Tuesday, May 23, Clonaslee College hosted their annual graduation ceremony for sixth year students.
It was a night filled with laughter, tears, and memories. The event began with a musical recital from sixth year student Mary Grehan.
The school principal, Suzanne McMahon, opened the graduation of 2023 by welcoming all sixth-year students and guests.
She referred to the school motto ‘Scientia Potentia est’ which means through knowledge the teaching staff are committed to empowering students to achieve their full potential.
She spoke of how proud she was to be a school leader of a community that upholds a caring, inclusive environment where respect for self, others and the community is encouraged.
The principal urged all students to recognise and appreciate their families, parents and guardians who have been their pillars of strength, offering unwavering encouragement, and believing in them even when they doubted themselves.
She requested the student body to bid farewell to Clonaslee college knowing that the friendships forged here will endure, the memories created will be cherished, and the lessons learned will guide them on their journey.
She finished by saying: “I urge you to chase your dreams relentlessly. Take risks, embrace failure, and never be afraid to redefine your path.
“Remember that true success lies not in the destination but in the journey itself. Congratulations on this momentous occasion. Complete the final LC exams with determination and confidence and I wish all well in the LC exams ahead.”
This speech was followed by the students’ last ever roll call from the Yearhead, Deirdre Caplice. This was an emotional moment for staff, families, and students.
Ms Caplice then addressed her students reminding them of all they have achieved over the last six years.
Students were given the opportunity to reflect on all the activities they have been involved in over their time at Clonaslee College with a video organized by Ms Staunton.
Ms Molly Buckley, Chairperson of the Board of Management, spoke on the evening and extended her heartfelt congratulations to all the sixth-year students graduating.
She said: “Your hard work, perseverance and dedication have brought you to this moment and you should be incredibly proud.
“I would like to acknowledge the immense support you have received at Clonaslee college that has been instrumental in your journey thus far. The exceptional teachers and staff alongside your parents and family have instilled in you all a desire to learn.
“A community where the Board of Managment, teachers, students, parents, and staff have worked hand in hand to foster an inclusive environment of growth, learning and respect.
“An environment where every student is valued and empowered to pursue their dreams.”
Ms Buckley emphasised the power of a community and reminded students of the importance of their friendships and connections fostered at Clonaslee College.
On behalf of the Board of Management she extended their warmest wishes to all the Leaving Certificate students of 2023 for a bright and successful future.
On the night, Fr O’Reilly represented the Board of Managment, Maura Hegarty represented the school staff and Michael O’Brien represented the parents and guardians.
All three spoke to the students about their successes to date and how much their future holds.
They then took part in a candle lighting ceremony to represent the light that has guided the students and will now foster them in the future.
Students’ successes and talents were also recognized on the night, with our senior awards being announced. Congratulations to all those who received their awards. The awards and their recipients were:
• Senior Basketballer of the Year: Catherine Hyland
• Senior Soccer Player of the Year: Cian Callaghan
• Senior Hurler of the Year: Tom Smith
• Senior Camogie Player of the Year: Amy Flanagan
• Senior Footballer of the Year: Cathal Lee
• Altruism Award: Jack Thompson
• Leadership Award: Hazel Conroy
• Geniality Award: Aoife Ryan
• Determination Award: Ellen Conroy
• Contribution to School Life: Amy Flanagan
• Overall Senior Student of the Year Award: Mary Grehan
Students received their certificates of completion and a small present from their Yearhead before taking advantage of the fabulous displays organized by Ms. McLoughlin and Ms. Maher for photos.
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