Western News

St James High's empowerment seminar gets thumbs up

BY ANTHONY LEWIS
Observer West writer

Thursday, February 15, 2018

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ROSE HALL, St James — “A life-touching experience,” that's how some students who attended a recent St James High School Grade 11 Empowerment Seminar have described the event.

“This seminar has impacted me in a way that I now look on life differently, and from this day forward it has now changed me,” said David Reid, the Cambridge High School head boy.

Reid, who hopes to become a chartered accountant, added, “I will now look at things differently by the way how I dress, how I approach people and talk. This, in some ways, has touched my life and I will go out and share with others what have taken place today to empower them and also to help them to see the brighter side of life, and help the society to come out of this crime state.”

Students and teachers of some eight schools from the parishes of St James, Hanover and Manchester attended the seminar, which was held at the Hilton Rose Hall Resort and Spa in St James.

The schools, which sent students to the seminar held under the theme: 'Empowering the Youths for Success: Towards Better Living', were Mount St Joseph High, Merlene Ottey High, Irwin High, Cambridge High, Anchovy High, Cornwall College, Maldon High, and St James High School.

Over 300 students in total attended the seminar.

“As a school, we believe in a holistic education for all our students, and this seminar is one of the many ways that will help to enhance and develop their knowledge, attitude and aptitude towards a positive lifestyle,” said Michelle Johnson, the work experience coordinator at St James High.

Principal of the school, Joseph Williams, noted that the seminar was beneficial to the students, some of whom, he said, had never been to a hotel.

Presenters at the seminar include: community awareness coordinator for the Tourism Product Development Company (TPDCo), Marline Stephenson-Dalley, who presented on the topic 'Empowering the Youth towards Professionalism & Deportment'; and president and chief executive officer of Global Outsourcing Solutions Limited, Davon Crump, who spoke on the topic 'Empowering the Youth for Success in the Workplace'.

The other two presenters were Acting Assistant Commissioner of Police Steve McGregor, who presented on the topic 'Empowering the Youth to Choose the Right Path,' and Audrey Tugwell-Henry, the executive vice-president, retail banking, Caribbean North and Central of Bank of Nova Scotia, who spoke on the topic, 'Empowering the Youth for Financial Independence'.

In the meantime, Reid's views were supported by Kevin Ricketts, the 16-year-old deputy head boy of Irwin High, who hopes to become a doctor; Annissa O'Connor, head girl of Maldon High, who is aiming to become an architect; Kimberly Campbell, a grade 11 student of St James High who hopes to become an accountant; and Javaun Muchette, 17- year-old archaeologist aspirant of Marlene Ottey High.

Javaun expressed that the seminar assisted students in correcting their wrong approach, “because most of us are doing the wrong things, and not even realising it”.

Campbell said that the seminar has taught her to, “think, do my research when it comes to getting a job or when I am about to do an interview.”

For his part, Ricketts argued that the seminar should have been extended to adults who do not know how to enter an interview, adding that, “I will definitely go out and inform my school and others about what happened today.”

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