It has been another tremendously positive and eventful year in Dominican College beginning with Friendship Week and ending with the celebrations for the Transition Year and farewell to our 6th Year students. All year groups had their awards ceremonies in the last two weeks of school which provided an opportunity to celebrate and praise our students for their work throughout the year, both in and out of the classroom. Thanks to the hard work by Ms. Doyle, Ms. Oâ€™Reilly and the 6th Year team, we were able to have a buffet lunch for the 6th Year students, which they thoroughly deserved and enjoyed.
CeiliÃºradh 1916 will forever stand out in my memory as a day that we came together as a school community. Yes, we came together to celebrate 100 years since the 1916 Easter Rising, but we also came together as a unit to put on a truly remarkable event. While we invited members of DÃ¡il Ã‰ireann to attend and we had members of the defence forces, the Irish Congress of Trade Unions and academics from DCU taking part in the ceremony, it was our own staff member, Ms. Tracy, who got a standing ovation from the students after her presentation. Ms. Tracy is the great grand-niece of Bridget McKane, who was aged just 15 when she was hit and killed by a stray bullet.
Our musical â€œAladdinâ€ is a testament to the fact that our staff work tirelessly to foster success outside of the classroom too. Produced over three nights, we were all treated to excellent performances from all who participated. However, those of us who have been involved in team events know the unsung heroes are those behind the curtains. To all the teachers, but especially Mr. Curry and Mr. Hurley, a huge thank you for your excellent production and to all who helped to make the performances such a huge success.
Orchestra, choirs, the folk group and individual performers have had many opportunities to display their talents throughout the year and have made us very proud in the quality of their performances. The choral choir, new to the school, managed by Ms. Murray, is going from strength to strength.
We are particularly pleased in the school to have been awarded the Amber Flag for all the work done by the committee of students led by Ms Moran and Ms Holohan in the area of promoting positive mental health among our students.
At this time of the year, our thoughts and prayers are with Junior and Leaving Certificate students as they are prepare for the state exams. I would like to thank all the staff for their valuable contribution to the education of our students. I would also like to thank all members of the school community for your support this year and wish all a very happy, safe and sunny summer break.
On 23rd May, TY students celebrated their year with an open evening marking a culmination of academic, creative and sporting achievements.
Those present included Dr. Olive Laffoy (Principal), Ms. Mary Anne Halton (Deputy Principal), members of the Dominican Convent and members of the board of management, teachers, family members, along with was our past-pupil and guest speaker, Ms. Mary Nevin. Mary is a night nurse with the Irish Cancer Society, holds a masterâ€™s degree in nursing education and also a clinical nurse tutor at Trinity College Dublin. She is an all-Ireland medal winner with Dublin in Ladies football.
Congratulations to Niamh Brennan winner of the TY student of the year. This award recognises excellence in areas such as work, participation, behaviour and attitude during the course of Transition year.
Caitlin Rice Murphy was a most worthy and very popular winner of the coveted TY award â€“ Spirit of Transition Year. Caitlin has gone the extra distance to help her fellow students and teachers throughout the year.
Our final outing took place on 26th May from Greystones to Bray along the beautiful coastline cliff walk. A lovely end to a great year. (by Ms. McCool)
As a Transition Year student, I joined our schoolâ€™s chamber choir as part of my Bronze Gaisce Award. The three part chamber c hoir was set up last year by Ms. Murray to allow students to partake in choral singing at a competitive level. We practise every Wednesday after school for an hour and a half. We sing songs from a wide repertoire including the religious and heart-warming â€˜Lift Thine Eyesâ€™ by Mendelssohn, to well-known pop songs such as â€˜God Only Knowsâ€™ by The Beach Boys, â€˜When Iâ€™m Sixty-Fourâ€™ by The Beatles and even songs from Italian Operas such as â€˜The Catâ€™s Duetâ€™ by Rossini.
Singing is a great way to come together, meet students from various years and singing has also been proven scientifically to help reduce stress!
Under the excellent guidance of Ms. Murray, the choir has gone from strength to strength since the beginning of this academic year. Next year we hope to attend various competitions and concerts to showcase the excellent work put in by both the students and Ms Murray. We are always looking for new members, so perhaps next year you will consider joining us! (Niamh Kelly 4.1)
Many thanks to Dr. Laffoy (Principal) and Mr. Moriarty (Teacher) for helping to organise our inaugural 5K challenge to raise funds for the athletics department.
We are also indebted to all those who helped on the day especially those teachers who prepared the course on Friday and others who walked all the students safely to the course.
Last, but by no means least, we wish to thank all those who took part in the event and those who provided support around the course. We held a draw in school before the end of the exams for all those who participated and picked 6 names at random for a prize of â‚¬10. This was our way to show our thanks to the whole school community. The winners were:
Claudia Nugent (5th year), CaitrÃona Dempsey (3rd year), Sarah Anderson (2nd year), Arel Contredas, Betty Crichton and Evelyn Doyle (1st year). (by Alannah Cooley)
Extract from Ms. Fionnuala Devins' Graduation Speech:
OÃche dhubh dhorcha a bhÃ annâ€¦ â€“ well, not really but a little drama never hurt anybody. It was a sunny morning, our first in Dominican College, and we sat in neat rows in the hall, swamped in our figure-flattering maroon uniforms, white socks falling down to pool at our ankles. Little did we know rumpled, mid-shin high socks would later become â€œthe fashionâ€, accented by the flapping of people in Dubes dragging their feet as they walk, but in 1st Year it was more of a case of not being developed enough for our size 4-7 socks. But we sat nonetheless, waiting for our first address as the new 1st Years. Go tobann, the Principal appeared on the stage and silence fell (although if you know our year at all you know it definitely wasnâ€™t true silence) and we listened to the promises of our future in Dominican College. â€˜We watch you arrive as Dominican girls,â€™ she told us, â€˜and leave as Dominican women.â€™ Sitting in the hall as 1st years, 6th Year was a distant speck in the future, something so far away it wasnâ€™t worth thinking about. Some of us thought we would never reach â€œDominican Womanâ€ status, but as I look around at you all, I can see clearly that weâ€™ve earned that title todayâ€¦
Beyond that, I would like to thank every member of staff, including secretaries, cleaners and caretakers. Each and every one of you helped to make Dominican College a school where students donâ€™t have to go, but want to go, and it made our six years as enjoyable as they possibly could be http://www.dominican-college.com/818-graduation-speech-by-fionnuala-devins
Reading: more than simply one of life's pleasures:
Mental stimulation Like your body, your mind needs to be exercised. Studies have shown that reading may even help in the fight again Alzheimerâ€™s and dementia.
Stress reduction No matter how much pressure you are under in your life; a great story will whisk you away to another world and help you to relax.
Acquire more knowledge Knowledge is power. You never know when something you read will come in useful.
Increase your vocabulary Being articulate and well-spoken will not only improve your self-confidence, but will benefit you in your exams and jobs. Reading in a second or third language is a great way to learn natural forms of expression in those languages.
Improve your memory When you read a book, you have to remember characters, plots, sub-plots and an array of other information. Every new memory you make forges new synapses and improves your short-term memory.
Stronger analytical thinking skills Have you ever anticipated the ending of a book or evaluated it afterwards? If so, you have used higher order critical thinking skills thus providing a good workout for your brain.
Improve your focus and concentration In our internet-obsessed world, we are regularly multi-tasking at a rate which increases stress levels. Reading forces you to focus on a single activity, reduces stress which ultimately makes you more productive in other activities â€“ study, work etc.
Improve your writing skills Reading the work of great writers will provide examples of how to improve your own writing skills.
Tranquillity It is hard to find something that tops a good book when it comes to completely switching off from the world around you. Of course, there is the option of reading about ways to switch off too!
Free entertainment If you feel that the cost of buying books is prohibitive, then join your library â€“ itâ€™s free. Most libraries are very helpful and will order books in if they donâ€™t have them.