The 2018 graduation ceremony of the T.A. Marryshow Community College (TAMCC) for the first time saw two valedictorians being recognised and two differently abled students receiving Associate degrees.
Valedictorians Blossom Degale, a Natural Science Student and Jahrel Stewart, an Information Technology Student, received a Grade Point Average of 3.94 and 3.95 respectively.
The graduation ceremony was held last Thursday at the National Cricket Stadium under the theme “Transforming the learning experience for Graduates to adopt and succeed in a disruptive world of Innovation, Technology and Entrepreneurship”.
The ceremony was noted for the distribution of certificates to 777 students – 622 Associate Degrees, 77 Technical Diplomas, 33 Certificates, and 45 Competency Based Certificates in 52 Programmes.
In addressing the graduates, Principal of the College, Dr. Jeffrey Britton expressed confidence that the future of Grenada and the world by extension are in good hands.
“When I reflect on the enormous contributions that they have made to our communities, I am optimistic about the future of our institution, our country and the global community”, he said.
“The class of 2018 is a reflection of the success of this generation, the shared values that this society needs, demonstrated in educational service, genuine concern for the environment…”, he added.
Dr. Britton went on: “Today we celebrate your success. You have experienced a period of challenges and growth of discovery and determination of intellectual inspiration that will serve you well in whatever endeavours you pursue”.
TAMCC and McMaster University have recently started an engagement partnership aimed at transforming the local college into a prestige institution in the region.
Director of Development at McMaster University, Paul Grossman was invited by the college to deliver the featured address to the 2018 graduates and he seized the opportunity to challenge the graduates to be different and amazing.
“This is a surely important time for T.A. Marryshow and also McMaster…but let’s be honest for a moment, what really matters here? Does it matter that another two colleges/universities have engaged in a partnership… none of this matters unless the advantages of this institutional changes impacts you – smart ambitious students in Grenada and of course in Canada”,
Grossman labeled the students from both institutions as “partners in transformation of what’s happening here in TAMCC and at McMaster University…”
“For a moment, I would like you to close your eyes and imagine what it’s like to come to Canada from Grenada. When you leave yourself vulnerable to forces that are not only out of your control but very often unfamiliar to you, even if you’re trying to better your situation, make life better for yourself, for your family and loved ones, it can be a very tiring and lonely journey”, he said.
“As you the members of the T.A. Marryshow class of 2018 take your next steps, regardless of where you go or how you get there, be sure to carry with you the knowledge and confidence to inspire you, to not only overcome obstacles and challenges but to adversely seek them out.
You can pursue changes in changeable situations, you can work against the status quo and that way you can take the mantle of leadership – be different and be amazing. You have the ability to make that change and that to me is why our institutions are partners,” he added.
Valedictorians Degale and Stewart gave a joint address to their fellow graduates, encouraging them to have futuristic thinking as they move on.
Degale said: “Regardless of (the) varying reasons for attending this college we must admit that having this institution as an option is a blessing. This is because many of our parents or guardians cannot afford to send us to universities of our choice after secondary school.
“This institution prevented a lot of our young minds from idling at home…At TAMCC we got a taste of college life…we are all sitting here today, ready to take the next step in our lives hoping that the midnight oil never runs out.”
Stewart chipped in: “We must not let our young mind become (scared) of the affairs of the unknown because the unknown is precisely what makes life more exciting. Although it’s wise that we make plans that would keep us on track, it is paramount that we realise the truth, none of us really knows what happens next, hence, we cannot forget to think and dream beyond other person’s expectations.”
Minister of State in the Ministry of Education with Responsibility for Tertiary Education, Skill Development & Educational Outreach, Pamela Moses delivered the charge to graduates advising them to rise to the challenges that they will face, in an effort to be able to take advantage of opportunities that will present itself.