February 2015 Volume 12

Summary Report of Etiquette Session 2014

Kadeem Campbell
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True success is achieved not through academics alone but through a wholesome approach to life.

December 11, 2014 marked the second staging of an afternoon of etiquette and dining entitled: “Manners carry you through the World.”  Standing tall on the Talk of the Town floor of the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel, Kingston College sixth form students and teachers gathered as they embarked on a whole new chapter of learning.  The formality of the classroom had been transformed into the dining tables at the hotel.

The organizers started off on a good note by ensuring that all students were seated by 2:45 p.m. to begin at 3:00 p.m. The first lesson had been taught is that punctuality is an essential aspect of good etiquette.  The programme flowed beautifully as the Masters of Ceremonies; Ms Donna Haynes orchestrated the afternoon proceedings in style and fineness.  Canon Powell, Chaplain, invited the presence of the Lord.  Mr. Dave Myrie, Principal gave the welcome and opening remarks.  He congratulated Mr. Walker, Guidance Counsellor and his team for conceiving and carrying out this idea.

The audience, a group of enthusiastic and future leaders of society, engaged in the ‘meet’ of the matter. The second lesson was the art of public speaking, presented to us by Mr. Litrow Hickson, KCOB and Norman Manley Law student.  Then there was the real meat.  Ms Beverly Phillips, our dining coach, led us through the correct art of fine dining.  The boys listened attentively and applied what was being said as the made their way through the whopping four course meal.  The baton of excellence was passed on from Head Boy, Master Mark Lewis to the distinguished old boy, Professor Rainford Wilks, our guest speaker of the afternoon.  In his address, Prof. Wilks persuaded the sixth formers to respect others by first respecting themselves.  Similarly to our founding father, Bishop Gibson’s vision, Professor Wilks’ address shared the sentiment of Kingston College deploying young gentlemen into society. 

At a glance, it would seem that the main purpose of the afternoon was dining etiquette, but that was not so.  We were exposed to many areas of social graces and etiquette.  Most of them were explained to us by Mr. Walker in class, but Ms. Haynes brought out a lot more that we ought to practise.  She taught us how to seat a lady, how to excuse ourselves from the table and re-enforced some of the recommendations of the various speakers. 

The students were also incorporated into the proceeding to give the afternoon a richer sense of learning.  They entertained us with the likes of The Book of Rules”, and Manners and Respect” (words modify to our event). Ms Haynes likened the singing group to the more established Pentatonics, (wow!). Then there were the Presentations and surprises.  The ever recurring sound of: “373,” to be completed for the announcement of a winner.  The lucky ones left with a brighter smile than the rest of us.  Still the evening was a pleasurable event that concluded with the singing of the school song, “We thank you Lord for this our great and noble school.”

There is no doubt in saying that this year’s edition of our annual etiquette session was tremendously a success. The lessons taught the food was god and the fellowship was great.  It proved to be an invaluable experience which deserves to mark a permanent spot on the Kingston College school calendar.

Thanks to all our sponsors, especially the KCOBA USA Inc. (New York) who made it possible for most of us to attend.  Other sponsors are Konnex Services Ltd., The Jamaica Pegasus Hotel, First Caribbean International Bank, Tourism Enhancement Fund, Express Embroidery and Apparel Ltd. TIP Friendly Society Jamaica Civil Servant Mutual Thrift Society Total Male, Lasco and the Jamaica Football Federation.

Individual Comments:

This is the second year of this session and it was an exciting and a grand affair in a very prestigious surrounding.  It was done with minimal cost to the students by way of sponsorship support and is a big learning experience for the students.  I think the session was very important to the attendees and I know that they were quite excited and appreciative.  The feedback is that they learned a great deal from the experience and enjoyed the exposure.  The lower sixth formers, and possibly the fifth formers are the correct target group for future sessions.  More frequent sessions of this nature would enhance the richness of Kingston College and add to the positive impact on the graduates and the school population in general. 

Jomo Karenga, Teacher of Mathematics and 12 Science 2 Form Teacher

The etiquette session of 2014 was a great success.  It was a learning process for the boys and teachers as well.  The boys tried to put into practice what they were taught weeks ahead by Mr. Walker leading up to the actual Annual Etiquette Session.  It is an event and lesson to look forward to in the coming years.
Cecile Lawrence, Sixth Form Co-ordinator.

The Etiquette Session was a worthwhile learning experience for our students.  It provided an opportunity for the students to be exposed to social graces in a formal and relaxed setting.  The presenters competently performed their respective roles.  They were also very personable and engaging.  In addition, the host, The Jamaica Pegasus Hotel provided a most delectable meal.  Overall, it was a pleasant afternoon and one that should be an annual event.
Tameca Telphia, Teacher of English Language and Communication Studies.

This etiquette session provided a vehicle for which our boys were able to see and experience fine dining and other social graces.  The atmosphere was comfortable and conducive to teaching and learning.  The boys were engaged; they asked questions, took corrections and made significant improvements during the course of the event.  Most of the boys commented on how much they learnt and their willingness to participate in future activities such as this.

Tameka Bonnick, Teacher of Biology and Form Teacher of 12 Science 1.

The Etiquette session was a lot more than I (we) thought it would be.  First we resented the idea.  However, Mr. Walker had to sell the idea on the premise that etiquette is not only about dining, but a life changing process.  During the session, appropriate social graces were discussed against behaviours deemed unacceptable.  The session complimented all that Mr. Walker taught in the weeks preceding the session.  I can now feel confident and comfortable whenever I have to dine formally.  I also learnt invaluable public speaking tips that will be beneficial when addressing an audience or speaking to high ranking officials.  Thanks Mr. Walker for sharing this experience with us.
Khiri Lawrence, Student of Lower six form.

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