I am proud to be afforded the opportunity to witness the induction of a new slate of students as recipients of the Susanna Lee High School Scholarship.
The theme “Thriving for Excellence” is quite fitting as it speaks to exactly what is required of you as a scholarship recipient. It is a reward for your hard work and commitment to academia and a reinforcement to continue to be relentless in your academic pursuits and strives for the best.
The Susanna Lee High School Scholarship was a gift to the nation following Independence in 1983. Over the past forty (40) years the scholarship has offered financial support to over two hundred (200) students, with over 2 million dollars invested in direct support of the students.
Social Security understands the significance of investing in our youth. We recognize the need to make available resources to transform, empower, mold, and guide our youth so that they can thrive and successfully accomplish their dreams. This scholarship programme is an excellent stepping stone.
It is a wonderful opportunity for you to pursue your studies hassle-free, giving access to prospects you wouldn’t otherwise have had access to.
I was also a scholarship recipient in high school, although not through this programme, and it transformed my life. It trained me to set realistic goals, remain focused, and push my limits. The internship opportunities taught me the necessary soft skills needed as a professional…skills that I exercise to this day.
The Social Security Board’s Susanna Lee High School Scholarship offers brand awareness, educating young scholars on the function of the organization. This is a great start. It allows you a chance to jumpstart your career. You are given an advantage over your peers…an opportunity to transition easily into employment.
In fact, I am aware of at least three (3) of our past scholars who are now fully employed with us here at Social Security: Shamaar Joseph, Kimmoy Brathwaite, and Oneilia Mulraine.
There are also several other notable persons within society who have passed through this scholarship programme: Johan Kelly, Leslie “Sugar Bowl” Morton, Miguel Thomas, Gina Joseph, Dr. Tishanna Hazel, Dr. Chanella Nisbett, Rol-J Jeffers, Marsha Griffin, Shavane Joseph-Williams, Zwena Jones, Hon. Mark Brantley, to name a few.
Medical professionals, entrepreneurs, business professionals, educators, and the Premier of Nevis. They are a testament to the possibilities that can be attained.
I urge you to take advantage of every convenience afforded you through this programme. Use it as an asset to building your resume, character, and discipline. Be intentional.
Challenges will come, but how you conquer them is dependent on you. You must know your strengths and weaknesses and push through in your unique way. It is important to note that perseverance is of paramount importance. Don’t ever give up. Pause, evaluate, recalibrate, and get back at it because a scholarship opens doors to vast possibilities.
So today, I extend my sincerest congratulations to all of you and I wish you the absolute best in your future endeavours. You are not here by accident; you are here because you have promise…because you have worked hard. You have a bright and open future ahead of you, be wise, remain focused, and be bold.