SCHULL Community College music students opened the annual prizegiving with a commanding rendition of Viva la Vida by Coldplay, reflecting the achievements of the award winners who reached their full potential across a wide variety of areas over the past year.
Dr Larry O’Connor, former chairman of the first Schull CC Board of Management, local doctor, parent of past pupils and grandparent of current ones, was a fitting guest speaker. Dr O’Connor spoke of being part of a pioneering group of locals in the early 1980s that had ‘an impossible dream; they wanted a second-level school on a greenfield site on the Mizen Peninsula.
He spoke of how the community got behind the project back then and how the people of Mizen are still so supportive of the college today. When the dream came true in 1983 and the doors of the college were opened, Schull Community College had a predicted enrolment of 180. With numbers today consistently in excess of 400, Dr O’Connor paid tribute to the teachers and students of the College for bringing it from strength to strength for more than 30 years.
Schull Community College principal Brendan Drinan congratulated the prize winners and their parents, citing their contribution to the school’s ethos and spirit, through academic, social and sporting successes.
He recognised the outstanding academic achievements of the Class of 2016, with 16% of students achieving in excess of 500 points, which is twice the national average and more than 50% of students getting more than 400 points. No less impressive were this year’s Junior Certificate results with many students attaining grades that surpassed expectations.
The Best Leaving Certificate award went to Cian Reeves, for his excellent Leaving Certificate results. Cian is now studying theoretical physics at Trinity College Dublin. Hollie Collins was rewarded for her exceptional 12 As in the Junior Certificate – she was one of only six students in the country to achieve this extraordinary standard.
The Staff Award was presented jointly to Anna O’Regan and Szymon Walczak. Anna was awarded for her enthusiastic participation in a diverse range of sporting, musical and academic pursuits. Szymon was described as a ‘model student’ and an ‘all-round sportsman’. Flo McCarthy-Doig, who is studying for a Bachelor of Science in cognitive sciences at the University of Edinburgh, was presented with the Bollinger scholarship. Ellen Roycroft and Niamh O’Callaghan received the Marie Hamilton scholarship, a bursary of €2,500 each per year for four years of academic study. In the Transition Year award category, a record 42 students were presented with the bronze Gaisce Award and the group that won the national award at the Show Racism the Red Card showcase last year were also honoured.
The Denis & Finola Quinlan Music Award was shared between two very talented and generous musicians, Caitlin Harris and Sylvan Morrison who, throughout their time at Schull CC, participated enthusiastically in all musical and arts events. Sportsperson of the Year was Niamh O’Callaghan for her involvement in football, athletics and basketball teams.
Student of the Year Fionnuala Solomon stood out among a large group of outstanding students. Fionnuala, who is studying theoretical physics at Trinity, was commended for her fantastic work ethic, her generosity and her exceptional results.
General Awards: Best Leaving Certificate – Cian Reeves. Best Junior Cert – Hollie Collins. Student of the Year – Fionnuala Solomon. Staff Award – Anna O’Regan & Szymon Walczak. Wendy Smith Award – Alan McCarthy. Bollinger Scholarship – Flo McCarthy Doig. Marie Hamilton Scholarship – Ellen Roycroft & Niamh O’Callaghan. Schull and District Community Award – Ellen O’Driscoll. Denis & Finola Quinlan Music Award – Caitlin Harris & Sylvan Morrison. Sportsperson of the Year – Niamh O’Callaghan. 1st year Christmas Concert Award – Curtis McMurray, Caoimhe Teeling, Tristan O’Donovan & Donogh Hutchinson. Ceramicx Scoilaireachtai Gaeilge – Caoilainn O’Regan. Thomas F. Meagher Foundation Award – Jacob Goode. Young Scientist Award –Aoife Nash, Hollie Collins, Martin Fleming, Luke Franklin, Tarah Fleming, Culann McCarthy, Andrew Cahier, Aisling Connolly, Elyssa Curran and Noah Fisher McCarthy. Cork ETB Graphic Design Award –Jacob Goode. Special Merit Award – Eoghan O’Donovan.
Junior Certificate Awards: Home Economics – Gabrielle Hogan & Sharon Dukelow. Metalwork – Aidan McCarthy. Woodwork – James Kelly. Art – Gabrielle Hogan & Lucy Robinson.
Leaving Certificate Awards – Agricultural Science- Padraig Downey. Construction Studies – Sinéad Carava. Engineering – Isaac McCarthy Fisher. Business Studies – Ellen Roycroft. French – Flo McCarthy Doig. Ursula Henzler German Award – Ellen Roycroft and Cian Reeves. Mair Lewis Fenn Art Award – Etáin Nash. Gradam Gaeilge – Aoife Ní Bhroin. Music – Jessica Gibson-Luken.
Sports Awards: Male Footballer of the Year – Richard Moynihan. Female Footballer of the Year – Niamh O’Callaghan. Basketball Player of the Year – Emmet O’Flynn. Sailing Award – Isaac Fisher McCarthy
Transition Year Awards: Friends of the Elderly – Niamh O’Driscoll and Evelyn O’Sullivan. Christmas Concert – Grainne D’Alton, Ellie Hutchinson, Culann McCarthy, Noah McCarthy Fisher, Lauren O’Sullivan. YSI – Annie Baker, Emilija Cogan, Ava O’Sullivan, Evelyn O’Sullivan.