Year 13 Graduation Chapel and Dinner 2017

December 05, 2017 at 1:26 PM

‘Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most importantly, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you want to become,’ - Steve Jobs

At one last gathering, the Year 13 students came together to formally graduate from Saint Kentigern College at their Graduation Dinner and Chapel last night at the Logan Campbell Centre, ASB Showgrounds. During an evening filled with emotion of ‘lasts’, over 800 guests comprising of students, their families, staff and Trust Board members came together for Reverend David Smith’s Graduation Chapel - an ending and sending. Before Chapel began, the audience was treated to a moving rendition of ‘The Prayer’ by Sid Chand and Victoria Tse.

Reverend Smith spoke to the graduating students about life after the College as it bears little resemblance to life within the Pakuranga gates. He also encouraged the students to never forget that they are sons and daughters of Kentigern. He said, ‘When you finally drive out of here, can I exhort you to go for it, to give it heaps and to keep learning. Take with you all that Saint Kentigern has tried to instil in you, all that the Chapel programme has tried to offer to you. Take with you the knowledge that the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ loves you profoundly.’

Directly after the Chapel Service, the Heads of House introduced their House Prefects for the year, congratulating them on a job well done. The Prefects then called each student up to receive their Diplomas and to be congratulated by Chairman of the Trust Board, Dr John Kernohan, Senior College Principal, Mrs Suzanne Winthrop and Head of Saint Kentigern, Mr David Hodge. The graduates then received their testimonials from their Heads of House.

Upon completion of the formal graduation, the procession was led by Piper, Lewis Hoggard to the dinner venue. From there, the evening was free of formality to enjoy dinner. Each table had been transformed by the Parents and Friends, with House photos as place mats and coloured balloons, placed in strategic winning order.

Following dinner, Mrs Winthrop thanked all the parents in the room for believing in the staff of Saint Kentigern and entrusting their children in our care. She likened graduation day to the satisfaction of watching a flower bloom. She said, ‘It is a day many have anticipated over the years and have a great deal of satisfaction and happiness now it has arrived.’ For the students, many will feel happy and some sad, but most will be ready for their next adventure. For parents, there will be a mixture of pride, relief, and in a few cases astonishment as there will be for the teachers, tutors and Heads of House.

Mrs Winthrop said, ‘Many of you will become leaders in various spheres of influence in NZ and overseas.  Be strong and compassionate people who lead as examples of excellence in servant leadership.’ She finished by reminding the students to give back by serving others and left them with a quote, ‘You only have one life, make it a life that counts.’

Head Boy, Matthew Stirling and Head Girl, Isabella Denholm then addressed our leavers. Isabella told everyone to find a moment to reflect on what they have achieved and what the College has done for them. She said, ‘Pat yourselves on the back for completing 13 years of school, 13 years of learning, of growing, of developing, of becoming a better you in one of New Zealand’s very best colleges.’

Matthew then spoke, telling the Year 13 leavers to remember the teachers who encouraged passion and gave them reason to put effort into something. To remember their tutor family and sports coaches who provided focus outside the classroom.  Matthew finished by saying, ‘We have a massive world to explore, awesome things to do, passions to discover and dreams to follow. The ending of school marks the beginning of the rest of our lives, we can all choose who we want to be, the things we want to do and the people we want to surround ourselves with.’

We wish all these students luck as they end their time with us. We send them on their journey, well prepared and with life lessons learned and the potential to go on and do good things in the next chapter of their lives beyond the College gates. We will always be interested to hear how their lives progress and look forward to our students keeping in contact and retaining their special ties to the Saint Kentigern community.


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