"Our justice system needs all the help it can get," said 15-year-old Victoria Buddoo-Fletcher, who is off to study criminal justice at Northern Caribbean University (NCU), after receiving eight distinctions and one passing grade in the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) examinations.
The former head girl of St Ann's Bay High School, whose dream is to become a criminologist, was ecstatic about her distinctions in integrated science, information technology, home management, history, human and social biology, English language, English literature and mathematics. She also received a passing grade for chemistry.
"When I saw the results, I was overjoyed, ecstatic, thrilled," said Victoria with a smile. "God has come through for me and I am grateful. In addition to the support of my parents and extended family members, my teachers have been a constant help and also demonstrated genuine care for me. I thank them wholeheartedly."
When asked why criminology, the composed young lady responded: "I am always curious about understanding deviant behaviour in people and to see how best to assist as it relates to their conduct in society."
She also confessed that she has watched all episodes of Criminal Minds and a few other crime dramas.
"There is something exciting about putting the pieces together in solving a crime, and while I am not attracted to the frontline duty of being a police officer, I am more intrigued with the human mind and people's behaviour. So, as a criminologist, my work will entail developing profiles of criminals and criminal behaviour using research and studies that examine psychological behaviour, social issues, educational background, environmental and biological factors. All these factors will provide an edge in solving crimes or handling legal cases. I am all into making Jamaica a safer place to live."
Graduating from high school last month, Victoria walked away with four awards, including the president's trophy and being top girl for four consecutive years while in high school. She was also a member of the drama and environmental clubs.
Her parents, Dyhann and Pastor Gary Buddoo-Fletcher, both workers at North Jamaica Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, praised their daughter and lauded the school for their efforts.
"I am extremely proud of Victoria. She is a product of Adventist education which has helped her to this point of success. We are thankful to the hardworking principal and teachers at St Ann's Bay High. We are also happy to know that Northern Caribbean University will be taking her to the next level of realising her dream," said Pastor Buddoo-Fletcher, executive secretary of the conference.
"Vicky has left a great example for her younger brother Carrington, and I greatly respect her level-headedness and strong spirituality. She also has a great artistic eye and strong creative ability, which I think might spin off into another interesting career path as well," added her mother.