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November 19, 2012

Bill Clinton Presents Awards to Kildare VEC Students

Michael Noonan, Bill Clinton and JP McManus at the awards ceremony Former US President, Bill Clinton presented two Kildare VEC students with All Ireland Scholarships at a ceremony held on Sat, 17th November at the University of Limerick. 

Joel Akinola from Athy College, and Katie Curran from Maynooth Post Primary School, were each awarded a scholarship valued at €6,750 per annum, which will continue for the duration of their chosen undergraduate programmes. 

In addition, the scholarship holders qualify for participation in the annual Washington Ireland Programme Internship Scheme.

Sean Ashe, CEO of Kildare VEC, with Katie Curran, Joel Akinola and Cllr. Richard Daly, Principal of Athy CollegeJoel Akinola obtained 570 points in his Leaving Certificate and is now studying Biomedical Health and Life Sciences in UCD, while Katie Curran obtained 580 points in her Leaving Cert and is now studying Teacher Training at Froebel College of Education in Blackrock.
The All Ireland Scholarships have been sponsored by J.P. McManus since 2008, and this year one hundred and twenty five students received scholarships.  Mr. McManus has contributed in excess of €30million to the scheme since its inception, and over 1,300 students from the 32 counties have already benefited from the programme.

Speaking at the ceremony Mr. McManus said, “Your academic achievements, combined with the dedication and support of your parents and teachers, has earned you this terrific opportunity. Go forward with enthusiasm and hard work and the world is your oyster."

Former President Bill Clinton gave an inspiring address to the students and 600 invited guests and spoke about how he started his education on a scholarship at Georgetown University. It was this scholarship he said, that started him on his path to education and the road to success.

The Chairman of County Kildare VEC, Cllr. Mark Wall, joined with the VEC members in congratulating the students at last weeks VEC monthly meeting and said, "I am delighted that two students attending County Kildare VEC schools were recipients of these prestigious awards; congratulations to everyone associated with their education". The Chairman further remarked, “it’s great to see a student from my home town of Athy being one of the recipients of these awards". The VEC will honour these students at a ceremony to be held at a future meeting of the VEC.