The day 18th of November 2023 ushered in the graduation ceremony, another milestone for St. Anne’s Centre for women and Youth Development situated at Satellite Town, Lagos State, Nigeria. The graduation ceremony represented the culmination of the journey of the student through their training. As Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez states, change takes courage, and this is the story of the candidates who graduated from St. Anne’s Centre for Women and Youth Development. They had the courage to attend the trainings in order to change their situation from financial dependence to financial independence. Indeed, Mike Ditka is right, ‘you are never a loser until you quit trying’ and the students didn’t quit trying. Months of effort has led the graduates to this day. The graduation cap and gown are symbols of hard work, dedication and courage.
Students received certificate and award for the training in Catering and Fashion design. Throughout their training the graduates were equipped with skills in Catering and Fashion design. They were trained to recognise and manage their strengths and weaknesses. They also had training in financial management and how to startup their own business.
The Fashion design training lasted for one year and the Catering for six months. The number of candidates graduating for this session were two Fashion design students and fourteen Catering students. This brings the number of graduates for 2023 to twenty-eight students.
The ceremony started with an opening prayer followed by a welcome address delivered by the Administrator, Sr. Freda Ehimuan RSC. Consequently, Sr. Freda presented the 2023 graduates to the audience. The graduates processed with music and dancing, welcoming all present with a song. They then presented their WaZoBia dance, depicting the three major groups in Nigeria: Yoruba, Hausa, and Igbo.
The climax of the day was the presentation of Certificates. It was presented by the Regional Leader of the Religious Sisters of Charity in Nigeria, Sr. Prisca Acholonu RSC. Awards was also presented to the students who excelled in different areas. The Graduates latter presented a commercial gas cooker to the Centre as a token of their appreciation
The graduation cake was cut and shared. Food and drinks were served and the graduates and all present danced.
The day was filled with joy and excitement. Although it rained heavily, nothing could dampen the enjoyment and happiness of the students.