Nadisha Hunter, Staff Reporter
Vaz Preparatory School, the institution Jamaica's Alia Atkinson attended before migrating to the United States, was in a celebratory mode yesterday, after the Olympian's fourth-place performance at London 2012.
Alia, 23, migrated at age nine just after passing her Common Entrance Examination and gaining a place at Immaculate Conception High School.
Vaz's principal Karlene Bisnott said, despite not receiving a medal, Alia had done extremely well and had made her alma mater proud.
"We are so proud of her. She started showing signs from before she left us because she has been swimming from she was at school and that continued over the years and we are very happy for her," Bisnott told The Gleaner.
Aimed to be the best
She described Alia as a very quiet student who aimed to be the best in whatever she did.
"She performed well academically and she did what she had to do in her own unassuming way. She started swimming from she was at Vaz and so she had represented the school on the swim team," she said.
Bisnott added: "She had the potential to do well. She was disciplined and she was proud to represent her school."
The excited principal said Alia's superb performance would act as motivation for the school, especially for the students on the current swim team.
"I will encourage the members of the swim team to stay focused and disciplined in their training and let them know that training will bring this kind of reward. So this goes to show that once you are determined, and you want to do well, and you believe within yourself that you can, as long as you expose yourself to the necessary training then you can do absolutely anything," she added.