alan devineThe Transition Year class has been on the go since September with workshops, community activities, trips away as well as competitions and projects. The following is a flavour of what has been going on since the start of September.

The girls enjoyed a series of workshops on First Aid, Haircare, Resilience, Interview Skills and ‘The World of Work’. They’ve been busy in the community helping with St Hilda’s swimming programme, with the Gateway programme, and Special Olympics as well as giving their time to bag pack on Saturdays for The Irish Guide Dogs and St Vincent de Paul.

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Sr. Maria Hawkes visited the school early in September and spoke about her work with the destitute children of Haiti. The girls organized a non uniform day fundraiser which raised over a thousand euro for her nutrition centre in Port au Prince. Many thanks to the families who contributed.

Many of the girls have taken on the Gaisce challenge (The President’s Award) while more have a number of competitions to prepare for including Young Scientist, Young Environmentalists, the County Enterprise competition, Rotary Leadership and Young Chef competitions as well as the very popular and successful Junk Kouture. They braved atrocious downpours at the National Ploughing Championships but Hurricane Ophelia put paid to their Clonmacnoise field trip.

The three day outdoor pursuits programme in Westport was a great success and last week saw themwest walk2 enjoying workshops in ‘Understanding Disability’ as well as ‘Web Design and IT careers’. Alan Devine from RTE’s Fair City was a great hit with his programme on public speaking and drama and Athlone Community Radio gave an exciting presentation on broadcasting. The girls are currently being interviewed for roles in the school bank and interviews are also taking place for the Leadership programme run by Athlone Rotary.

They took part in the NISO quiz in AIT last week, missing out on first place by one point and are brushing up on their current affairs in the hope of  being  selected  to represent the school in the Co Westmeath Library Quiz ‘The Battle of Wits’.

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Meanwhile a new departure this year sees the girls join forces with the boys in the Marist College to produce their musical ‘The Little Shop of Horrors’ which is scheduled for early February in the Dean Crowe Theatre.

 With all this as well as work in the classroom and very demanding  rehearsals they’ll be glad of a rest at mid-term before heading off to their work placements immediately afterwards.