The annual Awards ceremony was held on the 14th May. Thomas Barr past pupil gave the keynote address. Thomas is a very accomplished athlete. Thomas won gold in the 400 metres hurdles at the 2015 World University Games in South Korea with a time of 48.78 seconds. In April 2015, Thomas was named the European Athlete of the Month for, in part, being part of a national relay record and having a world-best time in the 400 metre hurdles. On 15 August at the 2016 Summer Olympics, Thomas finished second in his heat of the 400m hurdles. The following day he broke the Irish record and won his semi-final to qualify for the final in a time of 48.39. He finished fourth in the final.
The Junior Cycle Awards Scheme aims to recognise a pupil’s contribution to class and school life. The following criteria are used by teachers to nominate students for a Junior Award – courtesy, co-operative attitude, punctuality, attendance, classroom effort, excellent homework, improved behaviour, appearance/neat uniform, initiative, leadership qualities and extra-curricular
Students are nominated by their teachers for Academic Awards at senior cycle. Extra-Curricular Awards are a very important part of the Awards scheme and include Sports awards, Young Scientist, Science Olympiad, Junk Couture Award,
Chaplain’s Award, Community Spirit Award, Lasallian Award, Senior Debating, Green Schools, Student Council Award, Construction Studies and Technology Wood best project awards. Specialist awards include Year Head Award, Principal’s Award, the Lesley Leahy Award in memory of our former beloved colleague Lesley. For the first time a special Music Bursary was presented on the night.
De La Salle College, Senior Choir won on the double at this year’s Navan Choral Festival, coming first in two of the festival’s three competitions for secondary school choirs. They didn’t enter the third competition!
Three choirs competed in the Irish Song competition. De La Salle came first with a mark of 88. Later in the day, the Waterford choir performed in the main competition which had 17 entries. De La Salle out-performed some of Ireland’s top second-level schools such as Wesley College, Alexandra College, Ursuline Thurles and Maynooth Combined Community Colleges, coming first in the competition. They are now the 2018 Navan School Choir of the Year.
This is not their first success this year. In April, at the Cork International Choral Festival, they won the prestigious Irish Federation of Musicians Associated Professions Trophy for the best performance of a song in Irish by any school choir competing in this year’s festival.
Congratulations to the boys and their mentors. This is a great achievement.
De La Salle College captured the U15 Gaelic Football Eamonn Martin cup in style against Ennistymon of Clare on Monday last in Lattin in Co Tipperary on a score line of 1-9 to 0-5. De La Salle led from the off and were very unlucky when an early James Aylward goal was controversially disallowed as it was deemed to be a square ball. While De La Salle had most of the possession in the first half, they struggled to get scores. Mark Fitzgerald kept the scoreboard ticking over while Evan Hayes and Alex Keane worked hard in the forwards to show for the ball and were a constant threat. In fact most of De La Salle’s scores came from frees which was a reflection of their dominance up front. The backs and the goalkeeper, Luke Horgan, worked tirelessly and were solid as ever. Despite this dominance, De La Salle only led by a single point at half time, 0-4 to 0-3.
The second half saw a renewed determination and everyone upped their game significantly. With much more movement in the forwards, the scores started to come, both from frees and from play. Sean O Dwyer set up James Aylward who with cool deliberation slotted the ball past the Ennistymon goalkeeper for the only game of the match. This goal was the catalyst for the rest of the game with De La Salle ruling the roost for the last 20 minutes. Even when reduced to 14 men for an unfortunate red card, De La Salle kept their composure and with two points from Evan Hayes and a lovely dummy and point from Patrick Fitzgerald, it was only a matter of time before a Munster Gaelic Football title returned to De La Salle College for the first time since 2004.
Rugby in De La Salle College has exploded on to the scene this year. Both the u15 and u17 teams made a huge impression both in Waterford and beyond. The u17 team missed out on a place in the Munster finals by one score which was difficult for us all.
We managed to regroup and celebrate getting that far. Both Ms Walsh and Mr. Brady have so much admiration and respect for the boys.
The u15 team were able to take their 17 wins to the Munster finals and beat a very good opposition from Midleton in the final. Ms Walsh and Mr Brady knew before the game something magical was going to
happen that day. The boys were not leaving without a win. It was fitting that the entire team heaved to push Brendan Flynn over the line in the last second of play to score the winning try. We don’t think we will ever forget it…
This is the first time we have won any cup or trophy it is simply huge for us. All of the time spent standing in the rain on cold winters evenings suddenly seemed to make sense! In addition to the cup the boys also won tickets to see Munster take on Ulster. We had a great day out and the icing on the cake was to sit back and watch Jack O Donoghue captain the Munster team. Jack was captain of De La Salles first rugby team, that is something that we are very proud of. There are many boys breaking through to the Munster team and indeed the Irish team. To say that in some small way we played a part is just magical. We look forward to building on this year’s success next year and for the senior boys we are as proud of you as the u15 team. You carried yourself with dignity, you played with passion and we know the best is yet to come. Thanks everyone, have a lovely summer.
Bank of Ireland Junk Kouture is a national contest which encourages young designers in second level to create striking couture designs and impressive works of wearable art from everyday junk that would normally find its way into the bin. De La Salle College’s ‘RED WEATHER YELLOW WEATHER’
(Wayne Pepper Craig Cunningham and Tom O Hanlon) and ‘STEAM PUNK’ (Angel Agheria, Sam Walsh and Edward Mullaly) made it to the grand final of the Junk Kouture competition in the 3 Arena on April 19th.
Representing not only De La Salle College but all of Co. Waterford. Both teams are students from Ms Lee’s art class.
RED WEATER YELLOW WEATHER was created from old raincoats and umbrellas and highlights the effects of climate change on our weather.
STEAM PUNK was created from discarded or worn out elements of each of the STEAM subjects Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Maths.
We had great support from staff and students and a fantastic night was had by all.
Roll on to next years designs….
On the 13th December TY students met the European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport Tibor Navracsics, & Minister of State for European Affairs Helen McEntee TD in the Royal Irish Academy. The students took part in the interactive and live Q&A session which was a very positive experience for them. The event was moderated by Dr Aoibhinn Ní Shúilleabháin.
Congratulations to Jack O’Neill 6th Year who recently won the Lions Club Young Ambassador Award at the ceremony held in the Tower hotel. Sixteen students were nominated by Waterford schools and youth organisations. Following interviews, six students were short listed for the final panel interviews. Jack is a very active member of the student council and involved with the school debating team. In his spare time Jack coaches football and lifesaving. De La Salle College are very proud of Jack’s wonderful achievement.
On Sunday the 22nd of October, a very special concert took place in De La Salle College Sports Hall. It was a retirement concert for Br. Ben.
However this was an event like no other in the College as it was planned (and indeed happened) as a complete surprise to him, no mean feat as he is Director of the Brothers’ Community and lives in the building!
For about six months Music teachers Pamela Harrison and Margaret McCann had enlisted the help of teachers Jenny White and Laura Forsey Caulfield and had, with the help of social media contacted past pupils who might be interested in taking part. The response was overwhelming. Even if Br. Ben hadn’t taught them, he still had a big influence on them, either through the school choirs or the annual school musical.
Michelle Condon, past choreographer and director of school shows came on board to help plan the programme and script. Rob O’Connor, Greg Porter and Louise O’Carroll took on a virtual choir, an audio-visual presentation and staging / rehearsal planning respectively. Photographs and biographical material were sourced from Ben’s family and the brothers, in particular Br. Kevin McEvoy. This was then to be
presented to Ben at the end of the night as a memento.
Permission was obtained from the Principal, Ms. Betts, and the Board of Management to stage a charity
concert and call it “De La Salle College and Friends”. The charity to benefit would be Touching Hearts which has a connection with the school through teacher Dermot Dooley. All was almost in place. Now just to keep it a secret and to get him there….
His family and friends, along with the staff of the College, were invited to a reception in the dining hall before the concert. Br. Thomas was given the task of getting Ben to attend, and this is when he realised what was happening. All the plotting worked. He was surprised.
With Deputy Principal Declan O’Brien as MC, the concert began. A brass ensemble conducted by our brass teacher Michael Quinlan opened with “2001 a Space Odyssey” and the Virtual Choir followed with “When I’m 64” a favourite of Ben’s. We then began looking at past shows that Ben had himself conducted. The line-up included many past pupils who have now gone on to make their living as professional actors, musicians, composers and singers as soloists, including Andrew Holden, Ray Collins, Bill Stafford, Peter Power, David Flynn, Jamie Beamish, Richie Hayes, and Glenn Murphy. Younger past pupils Evan Croke and Ben Nolan also sang as soloists. The accompanists for the evening were Billy O’Brien, Richard Coady and Dylan Browne. Shows we visited included Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat, Fiddler on the Roof, Jesus Christ Superstar, Guys and Dolls, My Fair Lady and West Side Story.
Margaret McCann played “Moon Tango”, a piece written by Ben. Emmet Byrne played a beautiful Sonata by Telemann on oboe and Billy O’Brien treated us to a Chopin Mazurka on piano. Ad Hoc Chorale, a choir that Ben sings in gave us “Who will Buy?” from the musical Oliver, and an octet from that group sang “Lida Rose” from Music Man. The Alumni Choir made a wonderful sound as they performed Mansions of the Lord, Shenandoah and Ben’s own composition, Ár nAthair. The evening finished with Richie Hayes, Lynsey Penkert, Keith Reville and the entire ensemble singing “Brotherhood of Man” from How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.
It was a wonderful occasion which hopefully did the man himself justice. When he spoke at the end of the night, Ben said how much the people of Waterford had given him and how happy he has been here. This concert has hopefully gone a little way in showing him that the people of Waterford, and the staff and students of De La Salle College in particular, appreciate all he has done for its young people by getting them involved in music and by showing them, to quote the song from How to Succeed, “I Believe in You.”
To commemorate the centenary of the death of Thomas Ashe past pupil of the De la Salle Teacher Training College a special commemorative Mass was held in the College Chapel on the 5TH October. The College choir conducted by Br. Ben sang at the Mass. The Mass was followed by a lecture on Thomas Ashe’s life delivered by Mícheál Ó Móráin from Baile Riach, Co. Kerry author of the book ‘Thomas Ashe 1885-1917’Thomas Ashe was called to the De la Salle Training College in 1905. He completed his Christian Doctrine Diploma and also qualified in Irish,vocal music and plain chant. Whilst here in De la Salle College he played on thefootball team 1907. Thomas Ashe was an active member of the Gaelic League and GAA also whilst in the College. He was regarded as a gifted teacher who had a keen interest in the Irish Language, history, music and song.
A reception was held for all in the College dining hall following the Mass and lecture commemorating the centenary of the death of Thomas Ashe.
De La Salle College are working towards attaining Green Flag status. The Green Schools Committee took part in a “litter pick” initiative in the College and in The People’s Park. Councillor Jason Murphy and Paul Flynn of Waterford City Council spoke with the committee and their teachers Mr Tallon and Ms Meagher in The People’s Park about litter and waste in the city. The committee is working hard to reduce litter in De La Salle College and the surrounding areas.