B2C Graduation 2013

220 excited and happy students participated in the Bridge to College graduation ceremony on Wednesday morning in the Old Dining Hall here in Trinity College.  Along with teachers, parents and representatives from TCD, they came together to recognise and celebrate their great work and achievements at Bridge21 throughout the past year.

Our esteemed guest, Professor Michael Grenfell, the 1905 Chair of Education and Head of the School of Education, very kindly agreed to present the students with their certificates on the day. Although Professor Grenfell had not enjoyed school and left at the first opportunity he reminded the students that  finding your passion was the key to success and that had led him to his current position.

We were also delighted to welcome back John Lawlor, former director of Bridge21 and current CEO of Scouting Ireland, to make the keynote speech. John extolled the virtues of students taking ownership and responsibility of their learning and working hard and taking pride in their own work. John, using his years of academic experience, carried out some in depth research and with a “show of hands” and “levels of applause” found, to nobody’s surprise, that the friendships they formed were the students’ favourite thing about the programme during the year.

Professor Grenfell presents Katie Clapperton with her certificate.

There was an award ceremony to honour some of the outstanding students and teams who had participated in the programme. The “Spirit of B2C” winners were Roisin Murphy from Colaiste Bride and Thomas Maguire from Drimnagh Castle CBS. The Language Student of the Year was Ross Culligan from Pobal Scoil Isolde.

The “Computer Science Team of the Year” award went to Mr Team. Mr Team are Rachel Fulham from Old Bawn Community School, Conor Dowd from Gonzaga, Conor Fitzmaurice from CBC Monkstown and Mahamed Ibrahim from CBS Lucan.

The “Learning Circles Team of the Year” award went to S.K.I.T.T.L.E.S. Emmet Farrell and Jack Deegan from Drimnagh Castle CBS, Steffanie Bonode from Mercy Secondary School, Eduardo Travesi Tova from John Scottus Secondary School and Laura Murphy from Colaiste Bride made up the team.

Finally, The Team won the overall “Team of the Year” award. The winning team was led by Cian Larkan from Donabate Community College and included Amy Hollands and Sinead Quinn from the same school, Emma O’Hanlon from Mercy Secondary School and Jamie Doyle from Moyle Park College.

The winners of the individual and team awards.

The graduation marked the end of the Bridge to College programme for another year and if the enthusiasm of the students present was any indicator then it has been a very successful year! It was great to see so many familiar faces together and it was as opportunity to catch up with friends and reflect on a year that has gone by so quickly.

Some comments tweeted by students included that it was a “great day”, that they were “delighted seeing everyone” and that their time in Bridge21 was “the highlight of my TY!”

While there were some sad goodbyes at the end of the ceremony, we certainly hope we’ll see many of these students again. In fact, some of the transition year students will be working as volunteer mentors on the Bridge21 primary school programme, which kicks off on May 13th. For now though, we’d like to wish a final thank you and congratulations to all of the B2C graduates and award winners!

The lads from Drimnagh Castle show off their certificates!

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