Annual Kerry ETB Student Award ceremony

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The annual Kerry ETB Student Award ceremony took place on Friday 19 January. This is a key event in the annual calendar when we, Kerry ETB, celebrate the achievements of students and learners from our Post Primary Schools and Youthreach centres.

Sixty-six student awards were presented at this ceremony which is a very special occasion for all of the Award Recipients, their Parents/Guardians, Families and Teachers. The Award Recipients are excellent role models for their Schools and Centres. Students received awards for academic excellence, involvement in school life, peer mentoring, Transition Year achievements and leadership.

Kieran Lucid, former student of Kerry ETB School Causeway Comprehensive was the guest speaker on the night. Kieran hails from Ballyheigue. He has a Bachelors Degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering Studies and a Masters in Business Information Systems from University College Cork. Kieran began his career in kdb+ in 2006 and progressed on to work at numerous institutions including Bank of America, Liquidnet, Barclays Capital and Deutsche Bank. He set up his own data consultancy company QuantumKDB Ltd in 2011 and successfully sold it in a multimillion euro deal in 2016. As a strong advocate of technology he focused on technical sales in non-traditional industries which he recognised had a huge growth potential. From passion and positivity to leadership and ambition, Kieran perfectly embodies the entrepreneurial spirit while remaining loyal to his family and community. His main advice to the would-be entrepreneurs in the audience was “Successful start-up founders are getting younger by the year as the barriers to entry continue to lower, and indeed it’s never been easier to bring an idea to life in a short time with a small team.”

These awards also included the Best Oral Irish Junior Certificate Award as it is a priority in the Kerry ETB strategy to support and encourage the love for the Irish language. This award is sponsored by the Lucey family in memory of Kathleen Lucey, RIP, former Irish teacher in Tralee Community College. This award is especially significant this year as sadly Kathleen’s husband Paul, also a former teacher in Tralee Community College, passed away this December. It was Paul who introduced this award for the first time in 2013 and Kerry ETB would like to sincerely thank the Lucey family and offer them our
deepest sympathies.

In his speech Colm McEvoy quoted Nelson Mandela: “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world”. He went on to state that “in Kerry ETB we a very mindful of this reality and we strive to ensure that we provide a holistic education experience for our students in our schools and centres, where students can achieve their potential and we are true to our core values of respect, quality, equality, inclusion and learning.”

Kerry Diocesan Youth Services (KDYS) deliver a significant proportion of our Youthreach programme from its four centres in Listowel, Tralee and Killarney. Kerry ETB thanked Tim O’Donoghue and all the staff team involved in the delivery of the programme.

Ann O’Dwyer Director of Schools highlighted the excellence in teaching and learning in Kerry ETB schools. She quoted from recent Department of Education and Skills Whole School Evaluations which highlighted the quality of teaching and learning and student care in ETB schools. She also highlighted the strong emphasis on science, technology and the arts and congratulated Colaiste na Riochta Listowel for being the only Kerry post primary school chosen to deliver the new Leaving Certificate Computer Science Course from this September 2018. “This is a huge achievement for Colaiste na Riochta Listowel and through the Kerry ETB Principals and Deputy Principals Network and ICT Strategy Team we will be able to take the learning from Listowel and implement the programme in the other ETB schools in the coming years.

Ann also took the opportunity to welcome the new principal of the Killarney Two Mile Community National School, Catherine Barry to her first Kerry ETB Award ceremony. This is the first Kerry ETB State run, Multidenominational Community National School of its kind in Kerry and will service the Aghadoe and greater Killarney area and opened its doors in September 2017. It is currently enrolling for September 2018. “We are also working with the school Board of Management to develop a special award for the pupils of this school in future Awards events.” According to Ann.

Kerry ETB also thanked the event sponsor Lee Strand Cooperative Creamery Ltd. for their kind  sponsorship and also Mr Oliver Murphy, President of Tralee Institute of Technology (Tralee IT) for hosting the ceremony in the IT.
Pictured: Exemplary students at the Kerry Education and Training Board Student Awards night at Tralee I.T. BennettsPhotos.com

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