Thirty-three students, who were placed in high schools this year following the Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) examinations, were recently recognised for their achievement and presented with back-to-school gift packages from Manpower and Maintenance Services Limited (MMS) at the company's ninth annual GSAT awards function held at its headquarters in St Andrew.
The first-formers, who are now attending a range of high schools across the island, are children of the company's workers. They were given school supplies, courtesy of its corporate partners Lasco and Hi-Lo, as well as a cash grant from MMS. Additionally, 10 students also received certificates to start savings accounts from Jamaica National Building Society.
In addressing the students and their parents, guest speaker Dr Alison Cross, executive director of the Jamaica Foundation for Lifelong Learning, encouraged the students to "learn from failure" and urged them to remember four important points as they embarked on their high school career: "Find out what you like, don't be afraid to make mistakes, ask questions, and read."
Cross asked parents to listen, be supportive and believe in their children. She also advised them to, "get to know your children's teachers, especially those who teach English and mathematics", two core subjects in the school curriculum.
Chief executive officer of MMS, Audrey Hinchcliffe, reiterated her company's commitment to supporting education through the annual awards programme. She reminded the students of the importance of obtaining a good education and stressed, "If you cultivate the right attitude, you can all be successful, regardless of the school in which you are placed."
Hinchcliffe also thanked the corporate partners for sharing Manpower's vision through consistent support of the programme.
Since its inception, more than 350 students have received back-to-school help through Manpower's annual GSAT awards initiative.