November 13, 2013
Atlantis, Paradise Island is inviting one and all to get into the holiday spirit and give a new or gently used favourite children’s book in support of its Annual Holiday Book Drive benefitting the Atlantis Against Illiteracy initiative.
The endeavour, which is being spearheaded by the Atlantis Library and Scotiabank, is set for November 23rd from 11:00am to 3:00pm at the entrance to Kelly’s House and Home in the Mall at Marathon. Books can also be dropped off at Gems Radio station on Friday, November 22nd between the hours of 9am – 5pm.
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November 08, 2013
EarlyAct Club sponsored by the Rotary Club of South East Nassau...
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November 06, 2013
With 44 kids in college matriculating towards post-high school education, Yonell Justilien, director of the Bahamas All-Stars marching band has much to be proud of, but that pride ratcheted up a notch recently when the Bahamian squad showed up at the recent Howard University Homecoming Parade's battle of the bands to tie for first place (with Greensville County High School) to bring home a trophy and a $1,500 purse.
Two bands finished third, and another two finished second in the main event in which approximately 15 high school bands competed. The Bahamas All-Stars was the lone international team to compete. Each team received two minutes to perform in front of a panel of judges. They were judged on skill, performance, costumes and crowd reactions.
The Bahamas All-Stars, comprised of kids between the ages of 13 and 18, performed a number of Bahamian medleys during their two-minute feature, along with a dance routine that Justilien said the crowd got into.
For Justilien, the All-Stars are more than just a marching band. He said it's a youth development program that uses marching bands as vehicles to empower young people through the arts, hopefully allowing them to receive post-secondary high school educations to make them better citizens for life.
"Once these kids would have received any form of scholarship, particularly music, they can major in any field. From the start of the program in 2010, we have 44 kids in college and music got them there. And these kids can major in anything," he said.
"Long term, I just want to continue what we're doing, and that is to live up to our objectives - that is to empower these kids through the use of the performing arts," said Justilien. "And just by having 44 kids in college right now ... we just want to continue on that trend and hopefully we'll have colleges coming in by the dozens recruiting from this program."
He said they have three university directors scheduled to come to Nassau in March 2014 to recruit from the program. There are presently 130 kids in the program.
Band members are encouraged to aim for a 3.00 grade point average, and those who are not able to can receive academic help. Justilien said members of the band that attend The College of The Bahamas assist with tutoring, and that a parent of a band member who teaches math at St. Andrew's School offers Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) assistance on Saturdays.
Justilien said as long as he can get a young person to believe in himself and feel good about himself, that the result should reflect in all other areas of that person's life. He said that they would then push because they have something to work for.
"I would encourage parents to support kids who are interested in music, especially those who have the talent in music to encourage and push them, and where possible to purchase instruments for them because it will pay off in the long run," said Justilien.
The win at the Howard University Homecoming Parade came in only the All-Stars fourth international appearance. They previously performed at Bethune Cookman University's Homecoming in Daytona, Florida, in 2010; followed by an appearance at the Florida Classic Battle of the Bands in Amway Arena in Orlando, Florida, where they did so well that they invited them a second time. The invite to compete at Howard University came from a Howard representative who had seen them perform at the Florida Classic in 2012.
The Bahamas All-Stars was founded in August 2010.
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October 24, 2013
It was the album that launched Virgin Records 40 years ago in 1973 and sold more than 17 million copies worldwide...
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October 23, 2013
There are almost 5,000 students at The College of The Bahamas (COB) and they are not merely learners, they are potential problem solvers...
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October 16, 2013
It was at the age of 10, while in fourth grade that Kingsley Pinder realized that he wanted to become an engineer, and that if he wanted to attain that goal that he had to do well academically. Since then, the 19-year-old sophomore college student has made the honor roll every year. Failure for him was not an option.
And now Kingsley is a sophomore, enrolled in Philander Smith College in Arkansas, where he is studying mechanical engineering and boasts a 3.91 Grade Point Average.
"Education has always been important to me, ever since I was a little child, so that I could achieve the goals that I want to have -- to be at a certain point where my parents don't have to work hard anymore and to be able to support my wife and kids when I get them," he said.
According to Kingsley, his parents Kingsley Pinder Sr. and Ernestine Pinder always encouraged him to do well in school, always speaking to him about the importance of a good education.
"All they really asked from me was that I do my best," he said.
Adding that he never wanted to be average, and that he always strove to be on top, he said he knew he had to put in a lot of effort to achieve that goal. And when he realized that it took constant review and studying, he just did it automatically.
"From the time I realized that I wanted to be an engineer, and one of the best, I just knew that I had to get good grades."
His interest was sparked in the engineering field he said after working with his father in the family business, Ace Lawnmower Small Engine and Repair Shop on McCullough Corner.
In high school, Kingsley said he learned to review his lessons daily, but that in college he realized that he had to study differently, and has since adjusted which allowed him to maintain his honor roll status grades.
He is doing so well that he frequently tutors his peers when they ask him.
"I help them basically in any subject that they ask for help in ... college algebra, calculus ... it's just natural for me to help, because I learned to be helpful to people from my daddy," he said.
The 2012 Nassau Christian Academy graduate who attained nine Bahamas General Certificates of Secondary Education with five A Grades and four B grades, did not anticipate the medical setbacks that would try to derail him. Twice his lungs collapsed, and twice he recovered, still managing to do his schoolwork while he recuperated in hospital.
As he journeys on the road to his academic goals, Kingsley does so with the aid of a partial academic scholarship from the college he attends, as well as a government grant. And he plans to study through to at least a master's degree. The three-two program he's enrolled in has him studying for three years at Philander Smith before transferring to the University of Arkansas for the last two years.
As he succeeds in his academic goals, Kingsley's advice to students wanting to attend college is to put all their effort into their work daily, and to not slack off.
"The effort you put into it you will need in college if you plan to go to college," he says. "You can't goof off. You really have to put your effort into it."
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October 11, 2013
BAHAMAS Union of Teachers president Belinda Wilson is calling for Education Minister Jerome Fitzgerald to resign for choosing to go ahead with the decision to cut the salaries of teachers who participated in a sit-out on September 9th...
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