Liberia: ‘Dream Big, Work Smart’
Speakers urge the inaugural graduating class of Alexander B. Cummings Model Science & Technology School
The Alexander B. Cummings Model Science and Technology School conducted its inaugural graduation exercises on October 7th with a baccalaureate service at the First United Methodist Church on Ashmun Street in Monrovia and a commencement service at the school’s campus on Sunday October 9th, 2022.
The commencement speaker, Mrs. Teresa Cummings, the chief benefactor of the school, exhorted the graduates of the Sa làa Mai tai tivá class of 2022 to continue to dream and work towards realizing all of their dreams.
She noted that without specific objectives, dreams would remain little more than idle speculations. Madam Cummings, who titled her message, “Don’t Fear Dreams”, said achieving dreams requires focused effort, commitment, and wise decision-making. “You must be stronger than your fears. A person without dreams is like a bird with no wings.”
She went on to say that while life is full of challenges, the graduates should not end up as losers but should rather keep on fighting for their dreams to become a reality. Don’t fear dreams, let your fear drive you to successfully achieve whatever you want to accomplish or whatever you wish to become,” madam Cummings said.
Located on Du-port Road in Paynesville, Montserrado County, ABCMSTS is a STEM school. Though the arts are celebrated, the main focus is on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). The school also runs electives in the area of nursing, drafting, and technology. Their nursing students graduated with certified Nursing Aide Certificates.
The Liberian government and the Liberia Coca-Cola Bottling Company signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) in 2015, establishing the school as a public-private partnership institution. The Cummings Africa Foundation (CAF) is the only entity providing funding to the institution.
In order to create a place for the impending senior high division, Mr. and Mrs. Cummings expanded the then-existing school’s facilities. At a cost of $97, 000, the eight-class annex auditorium was extended in 2018. At the moment, parents and the Cummings Africa Foundation work in partnership to fund the school.
Gabriel, Kennedy, valedictorian with a GPA of 3.58, and 2021/2022 student Council President, who also won the helping hands awards, thanked the school, sponsors and his supportive friends for providing a smooth learning environment for him.
Kennedy encouraged his fellow graduates to always reflect on the disciplines acquired from the school each time they are confronted with difficulties as they go out into the world. “To my teachers, I am indebted to you for your time, patience, and mentorship. May you continue to impact lives throughout your respective disciplines.”
Students J. Adolphus Swen and Isaac Playeah got GPAs of 3.56. Playeah won the student integrity award, while Adolphus won the best dressed male student award and served as student council president for 2017 to 2018. All three students received full scholarships for all four years of their undergraduate studies in Liberia from the Cummings Africa Foundation.
In her message to the graduates, the school’s principal, Mrs. Cheryl Flah-Kiahon, expressed these sentiments: “You are the change agents this nation has been waiting for. You, ‘Sa làa Mai tai tivá’, The Successful Generation Has Come, just in time to walk into all sectors of Liberian life bringing with you renewed intellectual insights and grit.”
“You have come to stand against the corruption that is robbing us of all of our birthrights. You have come to uphold a standard of integrity that is needed to transform our nation. You have come, to not be just the leaders of Liberia, but to compete and lead in any international circuit.”
She noted: “We have had a blast of a time these past years and I will forever remember each and every one of you with love. You have brought me to my stingiest tears and my greatest pride, and through both, our bonds have deepened. I remember your coating ceremony at the 2021 Christmas show. Showcasing your class to the community brought me so much pride. I saw that day, that because of our weaknesses and challenges, that we had overcome, we had become a unit capable of achieving any feat.
“Finally, always remember who you are in Christ Jesus. Change the way you think to create a better life for yourself and a life that honors God. You began your senior year with your million dreams written on stars and now you leave these halls on a path to realizing all of them. Your future has come, it is now. Your dreams of tomorrow begin with the realities you live today. Live intentionally!”