a Graduation Ceremony took place in Grennan College to honour the success of the 2011 Plc students. A huge crowd was in attendance and Diplomas and Certificates were presented to Graduates from the Reception, Art, Craft and Design, Equestrian and Horticulture Courses. There were almost 60 graduates and a very enjoyable night was had by all.
Graduates from these courses achieved Awards from the British Horse Society, The Further Education and Training Awards Council and from The Oxford, Cambridge and Royal Society of Arts Examinations Board.
Mr Paul McGlade, National Manager (Ireland) for the Oxford, Cambridge and Royal Society of Arts Examinations Board, travelled from Belfast to present OCR Diplomas and Certificates to the Reception students. The reason for Mr McGlade wanting to be in Grennan College for this ceremony was that two of these students, Mary Kearney and Deirdre Flynn are the
1st students in Ireland to achieve Diplomas in Text Production (Business Professional). As part of his address Mr McGlade stressed that this was no mean feat as this qualification, which is part of a new suite of IT qualifications, is very difficult to achieve, requiring a very high standard of computer applications. OCR also works very closely with employers when deciding on new qualifications. For this reason these qualifications make students very employable in the present climate.
Mr George Vaughan, a respected Artist, who was Course Director in Grennan Mill Craft School for 25 years, presented Certificates to the Graduates of the Art, Craft & Design Course. Mr Vaughan’s work can be found in many collections both in Ireland and abroad. He spoke very highly of the standard of student that is graduating from this course, saying that a number of past students are now famous in their own art/craft/design field.
Mr Norman Storey, an Equine Specialist Adviser with Teasgasc, who is also responsible for the development of the Equine Breeding unit in Kildalton College presented awards from FETAC and the BHS to the Equestrian Graduates. Mr Storey was assisted by Ms Caroline Lane from Equi-People, a world renowned equestrian recruitment agency in Kildare, who gives an Award to the Equestrian Student of the Year. This year the Award went to Clare Gallagher. Ms Lane’s agency is the leading equine employment agency in Ireland and ranks 10th in the world. She spoke very highly of past students from the Equestrian Course and told this year’s graduates, if they had not yet secured employment, to speak to her before the end of the evening.
To present certificates to the Horticulture students was Ms Clare Murphy, who is Landscape Architect with the Parks Section of Kilkenny County Council. The Horticulture Course is a partnership with Kilkenny County Council, the students’ work experience involving the restoration of Woodstock Gardens and Arboretum in Inistioge. Rebecca McCarthy, from this year’s Reception Course, in her welcoming speech, spoke about this venture and advised all in attendance to visit these gardens!
The speeches by all the invited guests were very enjoyable, the common theme being that in times of recession it is so necessary for people to be entering the employment market with recognised qualifications.