Welcome back and a very Happy New Year to you all. I hope that you have all had a wonderful break and are sufficiently rested and prepared for the forthcoming examinations.
As I reflect on the autumn term, I cannot remember a term that has been so busy, frenetic and long. As the term came to an end, we were all shattered and ready for a welcome rest. However, the last few weeks in December were also full of positive rewards, fun and celebration. This began with some wonderful comments from parents at the Consultation Evenings on the questionnaires and in person. Clearly, I am delighted that so many of you have settled in well and are thriving in the Wyke environment. For so many of you, it is almost as if you have always been here and that you are being inspired to reach your potential.
Our Leavers' Awards Evening on the last week of term was a wonderful event. So many of the subject prize winners returned from their universities to collect their awards and met up with the staff who taught them as well as their peers. To see such outstanding ambassadors for our College, to witness their confidence and humility, was a humbling experience. Our guest speaker, Layla Guscoth, the Captain of the Under 21 England Netball Team and a third year medic at Oxford, was inspirational. This is particularly because her message was so aspirational from one so young. It proves that there is not necessarily a direct link between age and wisdom.
Other highlights during the last few weeks in December included the Christmas Concert at Holy Trinity Church in Hull; the Winter Showcase when so many of you performed for two nights in front of a packed theatre, (next year we will have at least two cross-College productions); the Wyke/Kelvin staff football tournament (which we won on penalties); the carol singing at lunchtime; numerous trips, visits and sporting successes in football, netball and badminton, and Wyke Gangnam Style! I cannot remember much of this except that I was incredibly nervous and would not have been able to "perform" without the sheer enthusiasm of so many of you and Sol’s encouragement. My wife is convinced that the reason why this site has had so many hits is because I have logged on so many times to laugh out loud. Thank you to all of you. The success of our College is a function of your enthusiasm, sense of fun, commitment and energy. Long may that continue.
As I write this, I am delighted to receive news of the success of our Oxbridge and medical applicants; Macauley Davy's progression to the next round of the British Olympiad (one of only 200 students in the country), the selection of Duka Ombeni to represent England Under 18 Schoolboys and Sophie Haywood to represent British Colleges in football. Well done and more on this later.
So what of the New Year? The spring term is quite short and the focus must be on examination preparation and success.
Bob Dylan sang:
"The line it is drawn
The curse it is cast
The slow one now will later be fast….
For the times they are a-changin."
Alas, my beloved Leeds were "thrashed" by the Tigers and the New Year will be challenging if we are to achieve success, but as ever, I am hopeful.
Good luck to you all and I hope that 2013 is even better for you.