Gary Spaulding, Senior Gleaner Writer
All eyes were focused admiringly on 19-year-old budding journalist Collette Campbell, out of St Andrew High School, and prospective medical doctor, 18-year-old former St George's College student Sheldon Edwards at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel in New Kingston yesterday.
The two were the toasts of approximately 20 students at varying rungs of the education ladder who sparkled in their respective endeavours to cop awards at the Restaurant Associates Ltd/Burger King 2012 Scholarship Awards ceremony.
Collette's performances in her Caribbean Advance Proficiency Examination (CAPE) earned her the coveted Lois Sherwood Scholarship.
Sheldon copped the Rodwell Lake Scholarship that has catapulted him closer to his dream of becoming a surgeon. The two awards for the high school graduates entering tertiary institutions are valued at $900,000 each.
"Having received the scholarship, I am on my way to CARIMAC as I am pursuing media and communications," Collette told The Gleaner. "Classes are scheduled to begin on Monday, so I am on my way there. I am doing a Bachelor of Arts in journalism."
Unlike Collette, Sheldon said he would be focusing on a first degree in the sciences before launching into medicine.
Two other St Andrew High School students also stood out with special scholarships. They are Antoinette Harris and Sarah Maragh who both earned the Lois Sherwood Educational Grant.
Four successful Grade Six Achievement Test students - Jada Peart, Deandre Shaw, Adjaynae Billings and Temoy Sloley - won book grants while another 12 were recipients of the Restaurant Associates Limited Book Grants.
A scholarship was awarded to promising track-and-field athlete from Eltham High School, Aneka Brissett, as Restaurant Associates Limited continued to broaden its developmental scope beyond straight academic pursuits.
Then there was the Lois Sherwood Arts Scholarship for studies at the Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts which went to Deamar Grant and Carlton Jarrett.
The scholarship programme provides awards in three major categories - tertiary, high as well as special education grants.
Scholarship recipients are selected based on performance in their examinations and involvement in extra-curricular activities and community service.