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Beginning a New School Year

November 19, 2012

On October 26th, COPSA-Haiti Nursing Institute and Laboratory celebrated the graduation of its first pharmacy technicians.  The affair was held at Moulin sur Mer, a picturesque resort on the Caribbean in Montrouis that was once a sugar plantation.

The program featured addresses by Jacques Pierre Antoine, a local pastor, Viau Roland and Jacques Maurice, two prominent Saint-Marc businessmen, our new administrator, Jacques Merenvil, who is a lawyer, Dr. Felix and myself.  I am getting quite good at delivering speeches in French; Dr. Felix told me I was totally understandable.

The students graced us with several choral numbers including hymns.  They also acted out a wonderful skit addressing the necessity of purchasing medication from trained pharmacies rather than street vendors.

Dr. Felix and I presented the fifteen graduates with their diplomas.

I had prepared a slide presentation on the school, and although we couldn’t find an appropriate connector to marry my MacBook with the slide projector, the students enjoyed it afterward, gathered around my laptop.

After the formalities, the students and staff, along with family and friends, enjoyed a luncheon prepared by resort staff.

Classes for our new students began November 5th.  We welcomed 246 new faces, and the day was punctuated by the requisite pomp and ceremony.  Dr. Felix, Messr. Merenvil and myself spoke to the students and my slide presentation finally made it to the big screen.

Our returning students have now joined us, but we haven’t been through all the paperwork to determine exactly how many are back for their second year.  It is likely that a few more may straggle in over the next few days.  Dr. Felix estimates the number to be near 200.  Unfortunately, some of our students have fallen victim to less than favourable financial circumstances.

It is truly amazing that in only one year the school has grown to its present size.  It is even more amazing to me that I find myself as Principal of this institution.  God has plans for us that are far greater than our dreams.

Dr. Felix and I with the graduating class

Messr. Merenvil

Speaking to the assembly

The class singing for us

Dr. Felix and I

A wonderfully done skit

An appreciative student

Presenting the diplomas

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