Early morning nerves gave way to a huge wave of relief and happiness for those who collected their Leaving Cert results in Clonmel last Wednesday.
For one Clonmel student the day was a massive achievement for her, as the very first Traveller in Clonmel to ever gain a Leaving Cert.
At the Presentation Secondary School Melanie O’Reilly opened the envelop that told her she had passed her Leaving Cert Applied. A delighted Melanie was accompanied on the nervous walk into school by her little sister Anita.
“I passed, I’m delighted,” Melanie told The Nationalist, beaming. She hasn’t made plans for what she would like to do next with her life, but Melanie is sure to be an inspiration to other young Traveller women. Teachers at her school believe she is the first Traveller in the South East to be awarded a Leaving Cert.
LCA students, Meghan Pyke said she had been “fairly calm” that morning. She was happy with her Merit result and said she is now hoping to get a job and work for a year before taking up a PLC (Post Leaving Cert) course next year.
Ciara Hickey admitted she had been nervous on Wednesday morning but was more excited because she “wanted to know” what her result was. She said she worked hard during the year and she is now planning to take a year out because she got a job.
Rebecca Ryan, said she was “delighted” with her results. This autumn she is now hoping to go on to study a nursing course at the CTI in Clonmel.
Shannon Kinane said she was “relaxed, grand, laid back,” on the morning of the results, adding that she was delighted with her results. She plans to take a course in hairdressing in Waterford.
Shannon Cairns said she had been “pretty relaxed” going in to the Presentation on Wednesday morning, because she could only do her best and all the work was done and she couldn’t do any more. “I’m absolutely delighted,” she said. Shannon is now off to Leicester to study performing arts.
Ciara O’Dwyer said she was “very nervous, but I’m delighted now.” She had been planning to take a PLC course in computers but based on her results she is now hoping she might be offered a college place, in the CAO offers.
Shauna Lafford admitted that she was “really nervous, scared!” as she arrived to collect her results. “I’m delighted. I got my course so I’m happy out.” Shauna will be studying hairdressing in Waterford.
At the Loreto Secondary School the girls were just as happy with their results.
Once she had opened her results Rachel Murray said she was “ok with what I got. It’s more points than what I wanted.” She admitted to being “really nervous” that morning.
“Oh my god I was so nervous!” said Niamh Nolan, “I’m delighted! I’m going to study biomedical science in UCC.”
Making up the trio, Veronica Hogan said she had been a little nervous, and tired, that morning as she, Rachel, Niamh and three other friends knew they’d be too nervous to sleep the night before the results so had a sleep over. She happily serenaded her friends with a chorus of ‘the three best friends anyone could have’.
“I’m ecstatic! Really happy,” a delighted Aisling Whelan said. She says she will be off to Cork, to study occupational therapy in UCC.
With her was Caoimhe Joyce Hearne who said she was “absolutely delighted,” with her results. She admitted to having been very nervous earlier in the morning but “everything went well.” She thinks she may now do a course in podiatry, in Galway, but will wait for the CAO offers before making a final decision.
“I was surprisingly calm this morning, but I could feel the nerves building worse as I walked in and saw the envelopes,” Melody Fox confided. “It was the longest walk into the school ever! I passed maths - I’m delighted, I will never have to do it again!” Melody now hopes to study graphic design, starting by taking a portfolio course in the CTI this year and hopefully moving on to the NCAD the year after.
Kayleigh Hackett told The Nationalist that she had been so nervous on the morning of the results that she was “sick.” But once she’d seen her results she declared herself: “Very happy. Very, very happy.” She hopes to study performing arts in Dublin.
Nicole Gleeson said she went from “very, very, very nervous” to “very, very happy,” on Wednesday morning. “I surpassed what I wanted to do. I’m very, very happy. I can’t say it enough!” Nicole is planning to study speech and language therapy in Cork.
Jade Fennessy admitted she hadn’t been able to sleep the night before the results arrived, her friend Rebecca Laste agreeing, saying she wasn’t even able to eat anything that morning and was a bit emotional before going to the school. Rebecca said “it’s like a big weight off my shoulders.” She’s hoping study midwifery now.
“I’m shocked, extremely shocked, I’m shaking, in a brilliant way!” Rachel Carey said. “I really thought the worst but now I’m so happy.” She is hoping to do a course in Cork and is confident she has the points needed.
Cliodhna Flynn said she was delighted with her results because she didn’t expect to do so well. “I’m doing a photography PLC. I got into a course in Cork then I’m heading to Dublin for a degree.”
Across town at the CBS High School the lads admitted to feeling just as nervous and then just as happy as the girls.
Joel Carey said he had been nervous. “I’m delighted,” he said, adding that he now hopes to study a course in business or commerce and will wait for the CAO offers.
Tony Cantwell was “a bit worried about Irish and Maths, but I passed them so the fear is gone at this stage and I’m happy.” He’s hoping to be accepted on to an engineering course.
Darren Hoyne said he hadn’t felt too bad on the morning of the results, “just tired because I didn’t get much sleep. I knew I’d get the points I needed but I needed a maths grade and I got that so I should be ok,” he said. He is hoping to study Web Communications in the University of Limerick.
Adrian McGuire said his results were “grand.” He is hoping to do teaching but said he would have to wait for the CAO offers to know if he has enough points for that course.
“I’m confident I will get what I want,” Michael Lynch said, saying he was “happy enough” with his results and had been excited going in to the school that morning.
Declan Hanly said he was relieved to finally have his results. He repeated his Leaving Cert this year and said he did better than last year. He thinks he will now do a PLC course.
Repeating with him was Hugh O’Leary and said the second time around he was “grand.” He said he hopes his points will be enough to get on to a course studying business and French.
Brian Looram said he was glad it was all over after spending the summer waiting. He’s hoping to study radiography in UCD.
“I got to the door and then the nerves kicked in, but it wasn’t that bad,” said Peter O’Keeffe. He admitted he didn’t get what he wanted but he does have a back-up plan.
Conal Guilfoyle said he didn’t start to get nervous until he was in the school, with his classmates, and principal Shay Bannon started to talk to them. “Oh my god I couldn’t believe it when I saw three A1s. I was convinced it wasn’t my results. This is staying on the fridge for a while!” Conal is planning to study music as UCC now.
Gaelcholaiste Ceitinn students gathered at their classrooms at the CTI on Wednesday morning.
Aran Crotty said he only got nervous on the morning of the results. “I’m happy enough,” he said, adding that he had gone outside with his envelope to have a look on his own, before rejoining his friends back inside the school. He’s now off to study art in Limerick, having compiled a portfolio in his spare time during the last year.
Daniel O’Connor said he was “anxious to get it over and done with. It turned out well in the end.” He would like to study sports journalism in Limerick.
Hugh Quigley siad he was “dead happy” with his results. He said he wasn’t aiming for any particular points and he is now planning to take a course in portfolio preparation in Cork.
Lonan Carroll is hoping to study business in UL this autumn and think he will be “well clear for that.”
Diarmuid Hickey said once he was in school and got his results all nerves went away. “I’m very happy, delighted,” he said, adding he wants to study arts with creative writing in UCG now.
Dearbhla Cowley said she was happy with her results and hopes to study commerce and French in UCD.
Also in the CTI were this year’s VTOS class, adult learners who returned to education and sat their Leaving Cert after years out of the education system.
“I did it, that’s the main thing,” Jonathan O’Riordan said. He’s returning to the CTI in the autumn to do a computer course. Arran Roberts said he had been dreading results day but he did better than he expected and particularly delighted with his A in English.
Colette Barron said it wasn’t until she got her results envelope in her hand that her nerves turned to relief. “I was shocked with my results, in a good way!”
50 year-old Norman O’Regan said he was the oldest in the class and was celebrating his A in maths and three B grades. He gave a special thanks to the class tutor Michael Corbett.