Regional

'Sterling Contribution'

Army veteran honoured for 20 years of service to Prospect College

BY RENAE DIXON
Observer staff reporter
dixonr@jamaicaobserver.com

Monday, August 06, 2018

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PARENTS, teachers and well-wishers who attended Prospect College graduation in St Mary last month responded with thunderous applause when it was announced that several students passed up to seven subjects in grade 10 and that the seven young men who graduated were already accepted into tertiary institutions or have already gained employment.

For housemaster Harold Sterling, these and similar achievements have kept him going for the past 20 years at the 62-year-old boarding institution where he has contributed to the development of young men.

Sterling, who retires this semester, is satisfied that he was able to help groom the young men who were left in his care. His chief responsibility was to ensure the safety and discipline of the students as their cadet drill instructor. This is a job he carried out with pride over the years.

After 26 years in the Jamaica Defence Force, Sterling said he knew working as a housemaster at the prestigious school located in the parish of his birth was the perfect opportunity to continue to serve his country.

“I was happy to take up the offer when it was given to me,” Sterling, who was presented with an engraved plaque at the graduation ceremony, told the Jamaica Observer North & East.

The man, who is from Days Mountain, spent much of the last 20 years on the grounds of Prospect College, where he played the role of father, disciplinarian and friend to students, who attended the semi-military institution, effectively and with pride and honour.

“It was challenging, but not new,” he said, admitting that dealing with teenagers can be a bit tedious.

One of the greatest fulfilments for him is to see the students excel.

“It makes me feel so good to know they passed through my hands and never wasted their time,” he said.

He believes the army is a great training ground for young men to take on different professions in life as it was that training which allowed him to have such a great impact on the lives of many young men.

“I don't think there is a better place to be than in the army. When you get there and you work hard and obey orders and do your work properly, you will have good things to say about the army,” he said.

Sterling was honoured by the benefactors of Prospect College for his contribution to the institution over the years.

Seven young men graduated from the institution which offers full scholarships to boys from several parishes across Jamaica.

The school's operation is funded by the Mitchell Green Foundation out of the United Kingdom. Over the years students have performed well academically, in music and skills around the home because of the training offered at the institution.

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