Cashel Community School Awards Night
Above: Front: Emily Kirwan (awards co-ordinator) Cathal O'Connor (Meaney Scholarship), Orla O'Dwyer Student of the Year, Sandra Cahill (Meaney Scholarship), Denis Vahey (guest speaker). Back row: John Gallagher (principal), Margaret Moore (deputy principal) and Tony Nolan (chaplain).
The annual Student Awards Ceremony in Cashel Community School is one of the highlights of the school calendar for the last 20 years.
This year guest speaker was past pupil Denis Vahey, class of 2005. Denis obtained a B.A. in History and Politics in UL having left Cashel Community School. Following this he travelled much of the world, and lived several years in the Middle East. He is now a commercial, portrait and advertising photographer based in Cashel but working nationally.
Denis spoke of the opportunities he received in Cashel Community School and of some of his memories of school life. He paid particular tribute to the care and support he received during his years and his abiding memory of his graduation mass to never settle for mediocrity and to always follow your passions.
In total 125 awards were presented in 10 different categories - Class Awards, Full Attendance, Creative Writing, Cultural, Sport, Best Leaving and Junior Certificate results, Leaving Certificate project work, Special Awards, The Meaney Scholarships and the prestigious Student of the Year.
35 class awards were presented to students. 45 students managed to achieve full attendance in the 2016/17 school year, while one student achieved full attendance for her entire time (2011-2017) in Cashel Community School.
Seven students obtained Creative Writing Awards in the areas of poetry, short stories and essays. 14 awards were given out in the sporting areas including camogie, hurling, gaelic football, soccer and rugby. This category also included the inaugural Friends of Cashel Community School GAA Awards presented to two students.
11 students excelled in the area of culture and were presented with awards for art, music, choir and the musical.
2 students were presented with awards for LC project work in the areas of agricultural science and technology and craftsmanship.
Cathal O’Connor was presented with the award for Best Leaving Certificate results 2016, having obtained seven A1 grades. James O’Sullivan obtained the best Junior Certificate results with 10 A grades.
This year also saw the presentation of two Meaney Scholarships to two past students of Cashel Community School who are studying in a NUI college. The ‘Meaney Scholarship’ is funded from a bequest to the school from the late Patrick Meaney Esq. He was a local businessman and farmer who bequeathed the proceeds from the sale of his book collection to the school.
The most prestigious award of the night was Student of the Year. In making their selection teachers were asked to take the following into consideration: academic record, achievements, leadership and initiative qualities, good interpersonal skills, school involvement, moral courage, any positive quality and someone who has credibility with both the staff and student body.
After three rounds of voting Orla O’Dwyer was named as Student of the Year 2017. Orla is the daughter of Brian and Mary O’Dwyer of Rosegreen and is a very worthy winner of this accolade. She is taking seven higher-level subjects for her Leaving Cert. She is no stranger to the awards system having received class awards (2013 & 2017), Junior Football (2014), Full Attendance (2012), Special Award for dedication to sport (2016), Senior Football (2016) and the inaugural friends of Cashel Community School GAA award (2017).
She has been involved in the school junior and senior camogie and football teams, captained the football teams in TY and 6th Year, played on the basketball teams (1st-5th year), and competed in various Munster and county finals with camogie and football at both junior and senior levels for Cashel Community School.
Orla is a 6th Year Link student and helps out in local community and sports coaching in her local club. She is a volunteer with Console. She plays camogie and ladies football with her club and county teams and was nominated for Senior Camogie All-Star in 2016. She has won various All Ireland medal (e.g. u16/u18 etc) and is currently playing on Senior County Camogie and Football teams. Orla describes herself as “very motivated and ambitious and a great team-player”
We acknowledge all the students who did not win awards this year but nonetheless make a very valuable contribution to life in Cashel Community School. Mol an óige agus tiocfaidh sí mar a deir an seanfhocal.