News

60th Class Graduates in Neuchâtel

60th Class Graduates in Neuchâtel

June 22nd, 2016

The Class of 2016—NJC's 60th—graduated on Friday, June 17th. Congratulations! The ceremony was hosted at the majestic Collégiale de Neuchâtel, perched high above the city that the students have called home. Proud parents, siblings, grandparents, and many pension families were in the audience to enjoy the heartfelt address by Class Valedictorians, MJ Tucker '16 and Nicolas LaTraverse '16.

One of our Guest Speakers was Dr. William Maddux of INSEAD. Dr. Maddux's research will be of interest to our community, for it focusses on the correlation between living abroad and creativity. Good luck in your next adventure Class of 2016! 
 

Class of 2015 Graduation Ceremony

Class of 2015 Graduation Ceremony

August 31st, 2015

The Class of 2015 graduated on Friday, June 12th in a beautiful ceremony. The event was attended by over 200 guests, including students' proud families and a number of pension families too. Class of 2015 Valedictorian, Kienan Holash of Saskatchewan delivered a heartfelt address which superbly captured the essence of the year. 

Guest speakers included Chair of the Swiss Board of Governors, Michel Feuz; Chair of the Canadian Advisory Committee, Gordon Piercey; Head of School, William Boyer, and Alumni President, Philip Chambers '00. We were also very honoured to have Mr. R.H. Thomson address the audience, for he is a Canadian who is doing very important work internationally through his project, The World Remembers. 

Now officially the newest members of NJC's alumni ranks, the Class of 2015 is preparing for the next adventure at university. Among hundreds of offers, 87 percent have chosen to attend universities across Canada, of which 49 percent are going to Queen's, McGill or Western. The balance of the Class—13 percent— will be studying in the US or UK, including Middlebury College, Parson's School of Design and Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland to name a few. Congratulations! 

Ski Competition in Engelberg

Ski Competition in Engelberg

January 20th, 2015
By Mr. Reynolds

On January 10th, our NJC ski team consisting of Katie W, Emma L and Kaitlyn F traveled with Mr. Reynolds to Engelberg for the Volkl Invitational Ski Race, hosted by the International School of Zug and Luzern (ISZL). The girls raced in gale force winds, so strong that the lifts were closed by the time the race began and they had to take snow cats up for their runs. All three skiers raced well in the parallel slalom, with Kaitlyn and Emma coming in fifth and sixth place out of twelve skiers, while Katie took the silver medal. The next day, with even more brutal conditions, the girls again skied well, with Katie and Emma just missing the medals. Schools such as ZIS and ISL brought 30 or more athletes, and so the four other schools were very impressed with our tiny but tough squad of Canadians. Despite tough conditions, we had a great weekend in a beautiful corner of the Alps. More photos

SGIS Badminton Tournament

SGIS Badminton Tournament

December 8th, 2014
By Mr. Reynolds

On Friday December 5th, eleven students comprising our badminton team accompanied Mr Reynolds to The American School in Switzerland, tucked away in the Swiss-Italian region of beautiful Lugano. 
After a nice evening in town, where one can find the juxtaposition of a downtown skating rink lined by palm trees, our team enjoyed a day at The American School in Switzerland (TASIS), playing at least six matches each of singles and doubles against TASIS, ISCZ and the American School of Milan. 

Our students prepared for the past three weeks, once a week, with help from Mrs. Billingsworth, and the training and coaching was much appreciated by the team.

When the dust settled, Matthew O and Andrew C had won a hard fought bronze medal for the doubles championship. Congratulations to our medalists and the entire team, including Emma L, Maddie H, Erin K, Alix M, Lizzy N, Scott C, Alex B, Eric B, and Viggo A.
More photos

SGIS Swim Meet

SGIS Swim Meet

December 8th, 2014
By Mr. Reynolds

On Saturday November 29th, NJC co-hosted with the International School of Basel the SGIS Swimming Championship in Neuchâtel. This meet involved ten schools, over 200 swimmers and 37 events at the boys and girls junior and senior levels. The NJC swim team consisted of Hayley A, Alix M, Lauren D, Alicia C, Matt O and Liam W. Our swimmers held their own admirably in such a large and talented pool group, and Alix was awarded bronze medals in freestyle and breaststroke.

Our own Beth Bellamy was an excellent swim coach, helping prepare our kids for starts, turns and relays. Our staff and students all helped out and made what was a huge undertaking run smoothly and on time to the minute, something much appreciated by the Swiss. Our student volunteers were organized by a committee consisting of Katie W, Sophie, Vanessa  and Becky B and they ensured that all 50 of our volunteers were in the right place at the right time, with the right time in many cases. Mr. Martin worked from start to finish, marshalling, acting as a translator, and helping with setup and cleanup. Special thanks also to Lyn and Louise for providing the tasty food.

We are fortunate to be able to participate in many excellent athletic tournaments and this annual swim meet is our opportunity to organize a major event for the SGIS league.  Thanks to everyone who helped out.
Thanks to everyone who helped out.  
More photos

Diane Goodman NJC ’76

Diane Goodman NJC ’76

September 11th, 2014

Deputy Director, Bureau for Europe, UNHCR

We are honoured that Ms. Diane Goodman NJC ’76 has visited Neuchâtel Junior College in recent years to speak to our students about her work for the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR). NJC students visit the UN offices on a planned field trip every year, but to hear directly from an alumna who works within the UN is an extraordinary opportunity since so many of our students are considering careers with an international focus.

During her presentations to students, Diane traces the evolution of her career – she began her professional career as a lawyer but soon was attracted to human rights issues and women’s rights – and shares how her and her husband's work (her husband Marc Vincent works for UNICEF) has brought her and her family all over the world to places such as Cambodia, Rwanda, Tanzania, Sudan, Nepal, and Geneva, Switzerland, the headquarters of the UNHCR. She also screens a compelling film featuring refugees telling their stories of their struggles in camps and the life they have made for themselves since, thereby heightening students' understanding of the important and necessary work of the UNHCR.

In 2014, Diane was introduced to the audience by her son, Myles Goodman-Vincent.  Now a graduate of NJC’s class of 2014, Myles is studying at Queen’s University.

For more information about Diane Goodman’s work, view this 2-minute interview she participated in during the Council of Europe, Parliamentary Assembly’s Spring 2014 Plenary Session in Strasbourg.

Graduation With a View

Graduation With a View

September 8th, 2014

The Class of 2014 graduated in style to say the least! For the first time in NJC's history—but certainly not the last—graduation was hosted within the majestic Collégiale de Neuchâtel, which is perched high above the city with an incredible view. The event was attended by over 300 guests, including students' proud families and many of their pension families too! The elegant ceremony was marked by students' poetry and musical performances and 2014 Class Valedictorian, Scott Oakes' moving address entitled, "Because of NJC". Special Guest speakers included Her Excellency,  Jennifer MacIntyre, Canadian Ambassador to Switzerland; Chair of the Swiss Board of Governors, Michel Feuz; Chair of the Canadian Advisory Committee, Gord Piercey; Head of School, William Boyer, and Alumni President, Philip
Chambers '00. 

Now officially the newest members of NJC's alumni ranks, the Class of 2014 is experiencing their next adventure at university. Among hundreds of offers, they have chosen to attend the best universities across Canada, including UBC, McGill, Queen's, University of Toronto, McMaster and Western to name a few. Nearly 20 percent of the class has opted to study abroad at international institutions including Oxford, St Andrews, Berkeley, Claremont McKenna College, Notre Dame and New York University for example. Congratulations!

Watch where our grads are headed next!

Where the Class of 2014 is Headed Next

Where the Class of 2014 is Headed Next

April 11th, 2014

Last September, over 70 teenagers stepped outside of their comfort zones. Since then, they have studied Canadian Grade 12 curriculum, travelled to over 14 countries, improved their French conversation, visited the UN and UNHCR in Geneva, participated in Model United Nations in Berlin, Leiden and St. Petersburg, paused in Flanders Fields on Remembrance Day, networked at the Canada-Swiss Chamber of Commerce, prepared for AP examinations, skied the Alps and played hockey at the base of the Matterhorn. They have learned about the past, have come to understand who they are, and now realize how their passions will contribute on a global scale.

The Class of 2014 has already received acceptances to the world’s finest universities, in a breadth of programs, including those listed below. Major admission awards offered thus far include a $280,000 scholarship to attend NYU, Abu Dhabi campus, $82,000 to Boston University for Engineering, University of Miami ($64,000), Queen's University's Chancellor's Scholarship ($36,000) and an NJC student is one of ten University of Toronto National Scholars ($100,000+). With their solid academic footing and the worldliness, sophistication, confidence and independence that they have developed from living abroad at this juncture in their young lives, the world is awaiting their next moves, and with pride, so is NJC!

Canada
Dalhousie University
McGill University
McMaster University
Quest University Canada
Queen’s University
Western University
University of Alberta
University of British Columbia
University of Toronto
University of Victoria
University of Waterloo
York University, Glendon College

USA
American University of Paris
Bates College
Boston University
Claremont McKenna College
College of William and Mary
Eckerd College
Fordham University
Georgetown University
George Washington University
New York University
Northeastern University
Trinity University
University of California, Berkeley
University of Michigan
University of Southern California
University of Miami
Wheaton College

UK | Europe
City University London
Durham University
King’s College London
New York University, Paris
St Mary’s University
University of Oxford
University of St Andrews
University of St George’s
University of Aberdeen
University of Birmingham
University of Bristol
University College London
University of Edinburgh
University of Exeter
University of Glasgow
University of Leeds
University of Liverpool
University of Manchester

Middle East
New York University, Abu Dhabi Campus

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Business Students in Geneva

Business Students in Geneva

December 6th, 2013

At an event this week in Geneva sponsored jointly by the Canadian-Swiss and British-Swiss Chambers of Commerce and involving 100 business leaders, NJC students had the opportunity to listen to Dennis Jonsson, President and CEO of Tetra Pak, speak on the topic "Endless Challenges, Endless Opportunities". Sarah asked the question on everyone's mind; "How recyclable are Tetra Pak products"? 

Senior Trade Commissioner visits NJC

Senior Trade Commissioner visits NJC

September 27th, 2013
By Mr. James Whitaker, Teacher of History and Business Studies

Today, Ms. Annie Dubé, Canadian Commercial and Senior Trade Commissioner in Bern, Switzerland visited Neuchâtel Junior College to speak to the International Business class about the role of the Canadian Trade Commission in promoting trade between the two countries. Switzerland, despite its small size, is a major trading partner with Canada. Switzerland has many investments in Canada, especially in the vast pharmaceutical industry. Ms Dubé also spoke to the class about career opportunities within the Trade Commissioner Service, which was of great interest to our students.

Class of 2013 joins Alumni Ranks

Class of 2013 joins Alumni Ranks

July 4th, 2013

This class received acceptances to universities across Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom. We were honoured to have Her Excellency, Madame Roberta Santi, Canadian Ambassador to Switzerland, at the podium to serve as our distinguished keynote speaker. During her tenure as Ambassador, Madame Santi graciously served as NJC’s Honorary Patron. Everyone enjoyed her address to the audience of students, parents, teachers, members of the Swiss Board of Governors, and the pension families who were in attendance. Other highlights from the ceremony included speeches from the Head of School, Mr. Bill Boyer and Valedictorian, Alex Hradecky ’13.

We congratulate the Class of 2013 and welcome them to the NJC Alumni Association!

NJC Grad Speaks to Students About her UNHCR Career

NJC Grad Speaks to Students About her UNHCR Career

March 27th, 2013

On Tuesday afternoon of this week, Ms. Diane Goodman NJC ’76 arrived in Neuchâtel to visit her former school and to speak to the class of 2013 about the work that she and her husband do for the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) which our students visited earlier this year in Geneva. Diane spoke briefly about the work that she has done in her career – she began her professional career as a lawyer but soon was attracted to human rights issues and women’s rights. She has worked in Darfur, Cambodia, Rwanda, Tanzania, Sudan and of course, in Geneva, Switzerland, the headquarters of the UNHCR. Currently, she and her family are living in Nepal where her two children are attending school and she and her husband, Mark, continue their work for the UN. As a coincidence, Mr. Larry Barnes, former NJC Science and Math teacher of some 25 years, happened to be on campus that day to tutor one of our students and had the opportunity to catch up with his former student from 37 years ago! Ms. Goodman showed a film to the students about refugees telling their stories of their struggles in camps and the life they have made for themselves since. It was a captivating presentation and concluded with Ms. Goodman exchanging stories with the students about differences and similarities of life at NJC then and now.

American Mountaineer Inspires NJC Students

American Mountaineer Inspires NJC Students

March 27th, 2013

We have had a couple of interesting speakers visit our campus recently. Mr. John Harlin, an American mountaineer who spent some of his childhood in Leysin, Switzerland where his mother taught school and his father started an international mountain climbing club spoke to our students in early March.  John’s father died unfortunately climbing the Eiger, and then several years later, John undertook to climb the same mountain following the same route as his father. A book and movie were the result of this climb, the movie being one of the most popular films ever to appear in Switzerland. It is called, fittingly, ‘The Alps’. John also trekked the entire border of Switzerland and wrote a blog about his adventures. In order to accomplish this feat, John had to hike, climb, kayak or cycle around the entire circumference of the country. His inspirational talk was appreciated by our staff and students.

Maîtresse de Pension Pens Two Books

Maîtresse de Pension Pens Two Books

March 24th, 2013

A former Maîtresse de pension, Mme Zoe Robert, spoke to our students during an assembly about living in Neuchâtel and about her experiences looking after NJC students in the 1980’s. The story she told during her talk had a moral for our students to appreciate, and Mme Robert, who at age 85 has written two books in the last two years and is currently writing a third, concluded her presentation by inviting our students to come and visit her for coffee and cookies! Mme Robert is delighted to remain connected to NJC and has very fond memories of her experiences with ‘her’ students, and has even travelled to Canada to visit many of them.

Model UN in St. Petersburg

Model UN in St. Petersburg

March 17th, 2013

The Model United Nations conference in St. Petersburg, Russia was another unqualified success. Our team of 13 students represented either Guatemala or Luxembourg under the watchful guidance of Ms. Gollert and Ms. Solnicki. After the conference had concluded, the students toured the world famous Hermitage museum, the palaces of the former Russian aristocracy including the summer palace, and the Yusupov palace, as well as the Peter and Paul castle, among other historic monuments in this European-designed city of the former USSR. Although the weather was typically quite cold, the group enjoyed five days of sunshine in a city that averages only 60 days of sunshine a year!

Have Skis. Will Race.

Have Skis. Will Race.

February 28th, 2013

Following our very successful family ski week in Zermatt, where conditions were very good for most of the week, we returned to begin classes on February 4th and the start of the second semester. However, the day before classes began, and after a full week of skiing in Zermatt, one of our students, Filip K. competed in the Swiss Group of International Schools’ giant slalom race. Despite not having race skis or a race suit, and despite not having raced in several years, Filip finished third of 29 racers and captured the bronze medal! Quite an accomplishment for a student who was racing on powder skis on a course he had never seen before!  Congratulations, Filip!

“Good Ol’ Hockey Game”

“Good Ol’ Hockey Game”

February 28th, 2013

Students who are keen to play pick-up with fellow classmates can do so locally, while the more competitive can compete against other independent schools in Switzerland within the SGIS or even join a local university team to keep elite hockey skills sharp. Not a hockey player, but a big hockey fan? Mr. Boyer, Head of School arranges excursions to take in a game or two within Switzerland, especially when Canucks are on the ice! See more photos.

Mixing Volleyball with Swiss Culture

Mixing Volleyball with Swiss Culture

February 10th, 2013

On Saturday, February 9th, our boys’ volleyball team was invited to the International School of Bern to play a friendly match against the host school. Our team of twelve boys played five matches winning three and dropping two. We then enjoyed a rösti or fundue lunch in a restaurant in the heart of the city of Bern, after which, most of the boys then spent the day in the capital city exploring the open air market and/or shopping. Some went to visit Einstein’s house. Albert Einstein lived in Bern for seven years and published his first five papers there, including the one explaining his theory of relativity. Our girls’ volleyball team has been invited to play a friendly match as well which we plan to arrange with IS Bern hopefully next month.

The NJC Kenya Initiative

The NJC Kenya Initiative

January 11th, 2013

On December 23rd, 2012, a group of students from NJC set out for our Kenyan adventure. Our first stop, Nairobi, was followed by a four-hour drive to the Maasai Mara to work with Marc (NJC '95) and Craig Kielburger’s Me to We social enterprise.
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Boys basketball in Leysin

November 30th, 2012

The Swiss Group of International Schools’ (SGIS) boys Basketball tournament played last weekend in Leysin in which fourteen of our students participated. The tournament welcomed fourteen teams this year, the most ever, and the championship is the oldest in the SGIS, dating back to the early 1970’s. Every year for the last several years, NJC students have represented the school well and have won their fair share of games. Last year, the team did quite well earning the bronze medal in Division ‘B’. The boys this year were determined to do even better – and that they did. In order to make the Division ‘A’ quarterfinals, the team had to win three of its four round robin games.

After winning their opening game, we lost to the team that went on to win the tournament, but we did manage victories in our next two games, meaning we had qualified for the Division ‘A’ playoffs – the first time ever. One more victory meant that we advanced to the semi-finals – we were amongst the top four teams in the tournament. Our semi-final game was a nail biter. Tied at the end of regulation, the International School of Zug and Lucerne (also coached by a Canadian) and NJC played two periods of overtime, and, unfortunately, our side finally succumbed and was relegated to the bronze medal game. We played a good final game but again, unfortunately lost another close match to finish fourth overall – an excellent showing for a team that had only come together a week or two earlier.  We are very proud of all of the players, as well as our managers and assistants who were involved in this stellar effort!

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NJC REMEMBERS

NJC REMEMBERS

November 11th, 2012

Students and staff found the Vimy Ridge Monument to be stunning for its size and design, especially on the occasion of our visit, when it was bathed in a golden glow of sunshine. To stand in the shadow of its stature was to be overwhelmed by emotion. As well, the three NJC students whose parents are stationed in Europe as members of Canada’s Department of National Defence were invited to lay a wreath. Their involvement provided a special connection to the trip for everyone.

Remembrance Day itself began at the Menin Gate in Ypres, where thousands gathered to honour the dead and pay tribute to the legacy of their sacrifice. Official representatives from England, France, The United States, and Canada were present, as was Crown Prince William of The Netherlands. Marching bands and military ensembles paraded down the main street, with people lined ten-deep along the route, wearing flag pins from numerous nations. Several Neuchâtel students managed to squeeze right up front near the Gate, displaying their Canadian colours through hats, mittens and scarves. During the minute of silence, no sound but the wind could be heard. It was extremely evocative.

Over the course of the day, visits to several war cemeteries left NJC participants feeling solemn, and also extremely proud to be Canadian. At Vancouver Corner, a monument to soldiers from British Columbia who gave their lives in World War I, four students from that province laid a wreath. A further memorable moment came when, under the shadow of the monument, known as the Brooding Soldier, the whole group was preparing to sing O’ Canada and suddenly was joined by a marching band that happened to be in the region touring various sites. That rendition of the anthem was particularly special – spirited, heartfelt and inspired.

Beyond learning about the history of the war, the group also explored Bruges, which is a world-class tourist destination. Students and staff toured the medieval downtown via boat, horse drawn carriage and Segway! In the evening, they ate traditional fare served by friendly waiters in cozy restaurants. One highlight of the first evening was the presence of thousands of soccer fans from Newcastle, England who had traversed the channel to cheer on their team. They watched the game on large monitors in the main square, singing, carousing and, fortunately, behaving. It was a pleasure to observe – from a distance!

From the moving service at the Menin Gate, to the informative talks by the guide, to the exhilarating Segway tour along the cobblestone streets of Bruges, this was one trip that NJC won’t soon forget!

Ian Esquivel, English Teacher and Christine, Class of 2013     

See more photos.

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CLASS OF 2012 GRADUATES JOIN NJC ALUMNI RANKS

CLASS OF 2012 GRADUATES JOIN NJC ALUMNI RANKS

July 2nd, 2012

When the 58 members of the Class of 2012 walked across the stage this past spring, they joined the ranks of only 4,790 people in history who can proudly say they are NJC alumni. Whether you crossed the Atlantic by sea in ’56 or by air in ‘11, you will appreciate the year of learning and growth that the Class of 2012 enjoyed à Neuchâtel. View excerpts from the students’ End of Year Reflections.

This class received acceptances to universities across Canada, the United States, Europe and the United Kingdom. We are proud to report that 84 percent of our students graduating with the OSSD have met the standard of Ontario Scholar, based on an 80 percent average or higher in six Ontario grade 12 courses. We invite you to consult the full academic profile for the Class of 2012, and a 10-year history of university placement statistics.

As has become the tradition, a distinguished keynote speaker addressed the graduates and their families at the ceremony. This year, we were honoured to have CBC Foreign Correspondent, Susan Ormiston at the podium. Susan’s husband, Keith Harradence ‘NJC 76, attended years ago and still raves about his experience as one of the best decisions that he ever made. If you have a moment, please enjoy this short clip from Ms. Ormiston’s speech. More than a moment? The entire speech is on YouTube.

The audience also heard words of wisdom from outgoing Chair of the Canadian Advisory Committee (CAC), Mr. Maxwell Thompson NJC ‘88, whose dedicated volunteer service to NJC over 10 years was acknowledged with gratitude and respect. New Chair, Mr. Gordon Piercey (Allison NJC ’02 and Adam NJC ’04), took over the role this past summer and is looking forward to building on the solid foundation set by Mr. Thompson, the CAC and the Swiss Board of Governors.

Head of School, Bill Boyer expressed his end-of-year sentiments to parents in the audience: “As much as it must have been difficult to turn your children over to us earlier this year, it is nearly as difficult now for us to let them go. But let them go we must. So we thank you for the privilege of spending this time with your son or daughter. We know we are saying goodbye to them today, but not adieu.” Congratulations and welcome to the alumni association, Class of 2012!

NESDA hosted by NJC

NESDA hosted by NJC

April 30th, 2012
By Dan Martin

On Friday (March 23) and Saturday (March 24), NJC hosted 6 International schools from The Hague, Dusseldorf, Vienna, Munich, Brussels and Prague for the second NESDA (New European Speech, Debate, and Acting Association) competition of the 2011-12 school year. We were visited by some 70 students and teachers/coaches. The two-day tournament featured competitions in original oratory, impromptu speaking, oral interpretation (of a written text), duet acting and debating (the prepared debate topic was: “modern media make fair trials impossible”). All students, including 7 from NJC, spent weeks preparing their performances, and the judges and audience were treated to a wide range of superb performances. Several members of the anglophone community of Neuchâtel came to watch and/or to act as judges, and they were all impressed by the scope of talent of the students.

Two of our students, Hannah Land and Jack T took first place in duet acting for their performance of an excerpt from T. Williams' "Streetcar named Desire", while the second prize in the same activity went to Samuel M and Eric T for their performance of Albee's "Zoo story" (Samuel and Charlotte P had won first prize for duet acting back in the fall tournament in Brussels) and Marina dePJ won first in oral interpretation for her rendition of a short story by S. Shamas. Megan C also competed and scored well, missing a third place by one point for her two performances.

The tournament director (me) was ably assisted by a student committee led by Charlotte Pand and Lauren N, who managed a veritable maze of details to create a superbly run affair. Thanks also to Ms. Northcott who looked after all the scoring, and to several of our office staff who also took on a variety of responsibilities.

Our visitors complimented NJC's hospitality and were suitably awed by our spectacular school location and views from our terrasse.

Click here for more photos.

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NJC wins at SGIS dance competition

NJC wins at SGIS dance competition

March 29th, 2012
By Erika R.

As a competitive dancer, adjusting to a new routine in Neuchâtel that did not involve dance four nights a week was a difficult task. Many students had to leave behind their extracurricular activities in Canada, but thankfully Mr. Boyer helped us retrieve ours here when informing us of an upcoming dance competition.

Marissa DM, another dancer, and I jumped right on board as we had less than two months to prepare for the competition, without the help of a dance teacher. I was surprised by how many students had enthusiastically  volunteered. After gathering a dance team, Mr. Boyer helped us find a rehearsal space. He led us straight to Pleine Forme, a private fitness centre with fantastic studio space. Marissa and I were overjoyed to see a big room with hardwood floors, mirrors, a good sound system and fancy lights, as we would have settled for almost anything. A jammed rehearsal schedule was set that same day. We juggled dance practices and studying during the week of exams. I have to admit it was not easy to make up hip hop choreography in my tiny pension room, teach myself how to mix songs and study for three different exams, but I knew the dancing was worth it.

We had pulled together a hip hop dance with nine girls; Jade W, Jasmine H, Hailey S, Laura C, Rhian F, Alyssa O, Becca B, Marissa and I, before leaving to Zermatt. Then in two, three hour, practices the weekend back from Zermatt, Haley, Jasmine, Marissa and I completed a contemporary piece to the song Werewolf by Coco Rosie. I was also convinced to enter a solo into the competition that weekend, that I made up to the song Revelry by Kings of Leon. I was surprised at how well both dances had turned out, with me as an amateur choreographer and with many beginner dancers.

The week of the competition, costumes were assembled, dances were perfected and our team was ready. The competition was held at the Théatre de Vevey, and was hosted by Saint George’s International School. There were five other international schools participating in all age categories and dance styles. The day of the competition was a huge success. The girls danced to their fullest potential and blew the judges away with their energy and creativity. The hip hop dance finished in second place, while the contemporary and my solo placed first. We cheered louder than ever because we were very excited to be the first NJC dance team to put a trophy in the school trophy cabinet. Congratulations to all the dancers and a huge thanks to M. Boyer, M. and Mrs. Frankie-Deverell for their support!

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Peter Dalglish empowers NJC students

Peter Dalglish empowers NJC students

February 12th, 2012
By Trish

On Tuesday, October 19, Neuchatel Junior College enjoyed an inspiring talk from Peter Dalglish. Not just any humanitarian aid worker, Mr. Dalglish is the leading authority on working, street and war-affected children in developing nations across the world. He is an alumnus of Upper Canada College, Standford and Dalhousie Law, and is known primarily for founding Street Kids International, a global leader in organizing self-help projects for impoverished urban children.

Junior Chamber International called him one of the ten outstanding young people in the world. Pierre Trudeau appointed him as the first director of Youth Services Canada. He is the Chief Technological advisor for the UN child labour program in Nepal and the executive director of South Asia Children’s Fund. For all his work in the field, he is the recipient of three honorary doctorate degrees as well as the fellowship of man award and the Dalhousie Law School award for public service. He has published a book called The Courage of Children, developed a film about HIV prevention, and next year will be working with the UN in Afghanistan to take care of impoverished school-age girls across the whole country.

No one was quite sure what to expect when it was announced that Mr. Dalglish would be speaking about his work—by all the buzz from the teachers, we knew it would be interesting, but the real surprise came in Mr. Dalglish’s emphasis on what we as students can do to help and the number of volunteer opportunities there are for us out there. He highlighted many of the life decisions we will soon be making and described the incredible power vested in us as young, worldly individuals to solve the problems on the Earth today. He described his own lifestyle and the changes he has effected and seen effected in countries around the world. Most importantly, he made this invigorating scenario reachable and realistic for us, by offering us his help in organizing volunteer trips and the opportunity to contact him later through email.

As a speaker, Mr. Dalglish was funny, candid, engaging and inspiring; he warned us against the toil of office jobs, described his experience working in the field of Law as well as humanitarian aid and encouraged students to give a hearty thanks to their parents for the opportunity to be here at NJC and experience a greater part of the world through travel. I think we all walked away struck with the potential that we have to help others, and the duty we have to give back to society by effecting positive change through service trips like the Nepal trek or the Me to We trips affiliated with the school. We are incredibly lucky to be here, and we owe Mr. Dalglish thanks for taking the time to speak to us about what we can do with that luck to make the world we live in a better place.

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