The County Louth Adult Learning Service held their annual Student Awards Night in the d Hotel, Drogheda on Thursday last, 29th November 2018.
The ceremony was opened by Maria Morgan, the previous Adult Literacy Organiser for the Centre of Further Education in King Street who is now on a career break.
Maria introduced Sharon Tolan, the new Chairperson of Louth Meath Education & Training Board and the director of further education for LMETB, Sadie Ward Mc Dermott, who both expressed their delight to be able to attend the ceremony and be part of such a proud night for students.
Maria then introduced the author Deirdre Purcell who was there as guest of honour to launch “Well on the Way”, a book of poetry and writing compiled by the students.
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Maria spoke about the commitment of the adults who had returned to education and thanked their family members for the support they have given the learners over the past year allowing them to pursue their goals in education, she also spoke of the difficulty of her decision to step away from her role in adult education as she pursues other interests, and also how she misses all in King Street.
Maria also remembered two of the learners who sadly have passed away in recent months and a candle was lit for both Stuart Seery and Przemyslaw Kalinski by their friends and family followed by a minutes silence in their honour.
The presentation of certificates followed as students were proudly cheered by their friends and families.
Deirdre Purcell told the students she was genuinely moved by the atmosphere of pride in the room. She spoke of the self-belief that it takes for an adult to take that first step back to education and also of the courage required to admit to others that “I need help”.
Deirdre finished up by reading a moving piece written by recently deceased Stuart Seery along with some of the lovely tributes paid to him by his fellow classmates. A copy of the book was then given to all present in the room.
Light refreshments were served and students mixed and mingled together before heading home to enjoy more of their fantastic book, “Well on the Way”.