St Dominic’s Graduation Ceremony

news: St Dominic’s Graduation Ceremony

THERE WERE tearful eyes at the Hotel Palácio in Estoril last Sunday as 36 International Baccalaureate students of the Graduating Class of 2005 probably severed their last ties with the school.

Also present for the ceremony were parents, grandparents and invited guests to bear witness to the students’ graduation. Walking down the aisle to the music of Chariots of Fire by Vangelis, were Stephanie Duarte on viola and her music students. On centre stage to greet them were Mr. Richard Parker, IB Diploma Co-ordinator, Sister Aedris O.P., President of the Board, guest speaker His Excellency the Ambassador for Ireland, Mr. Patrick O’Connor, Mrs. Maria do Rosário Empis, School Principal, and Mr. Roger Marshman, Head of Senior School.

Student speakers Miguel Côrte Real, Jimisha Lakhani and Ruben Vriend took to the stage with highlights of life over the years at St Dominic’s. Then Mr. Steve Bruce-Lomba commented on how proud he was to be chosen as staff speaker, saying that the students will leave behind their scrumptious, tuck-shop lunches, but, more importantly, will make new friends: “As the Greek Aristotle said, ‘a true friend is one soul in two bodies’.”

Next came Landslide by Fleetwood Mac, sung by Saalah Attinello and Elise Witeck. This led into the introduction by Roger Marshman of Irish Ambassador, Mr. O’Connor, who spoke of how he had turned to his two children for help as to what guidance he could give the students at the graduation. His daughter told him they should never be frightened of making a change as the world is all before them. His words will need to be remembered by the graduating students for many a year to come.

Mrs. Empis then presented School Diplomas to all the students. A musical interlude followed with Zach Woolfson and Elise Witek on guitars, and Ruben Vriend on percussion, singing Cat Steven’s Father and Son. Individual awards followed and the closing remarks came from Roger Marshman, who reminded everyone of the school’s 30th anniversary, the Past Pupils Association that will allow them continued contacts with each other and the aid that the school has given to Sri Lanka.

The graduation was brought to a close by Carolina Castro Freire, Julie Denis and Joana do Vale singing Greatest Love of All by Whitney Houston.

By Bob Hughes