Service Worker Graduates. (L-R) Row 1: Taylen Sunday, Corina
Oakes, Javan Cook, Shyla Oakes, Keisha Mitchell, Joni Garrow
and Andi Phillips. Row 2: Ivy Oakes, Lauren Swamp, Tesha Sunday,
Jhazmayn Diaz-Jacobs, Hannah Lafrance, Jodi Jackson, Marlene
Bero, Trish Garrow, Arisawe Lazore, Katie Cook and Ann Marie
Laughing. Missing: Carey Niio Perkins.
Students that had put in two years of hard work were recognized
last week and those who supported them were honored as well.
Iohahi:io Adult Education Social Services and Business programs
held their closing ceremonies last week. Master of Ceremonies Margaret
Lafrance, Acting Program Manager, explained this was not an official
graduation event, as that will be held in June at the St. Lawrence
College campus in Cornwall. But it was to recognize students and
families who worked together to get the student to school on time
"Iohahi:io takes pride in celebrating students' achievements
and recognizing family support and contributions to their success
by hosting their own closing ceremony here in the community. So
it's our own way of offering our appreciation to the families that
helped and support the students that were able to make it to their
graduation," said Margaret Lafrance.
Instructor Cheryl Walker of the Social Service Program said
getting that diploma is one achievement, but there are now other
"We often talked about the idea of keeping an eye on the prize.
For some of you there are all kinds of different things that become
prizes. Now you get to sit and read to your little ones, or actually
getting to watch a TV show and not think about what kind of assignment
is due tomorrow," said Walker.
Victoria Workman of St. Lawrence College talked about Akwesasne's
programs participation with her institution.
"For many years we've enjoyed this wonderful community of togetherness
and learning and look forward to it for many many more years to
come. We value this partnership and look forward to students in
the future," said Workman.
Marlene Bero of the Social Service Worker
program received the Elizabeth Lazore Memorial award. Presenting
is Margaret Lafrance, Acting Program Manager.
This year's program at Iohahi:io was put together with dedicated
people from the school and Akwesasne community and these were Donna
Jocko, Sheila Lafrance-Post-Secondary coordinator, Sharon Philips-Kitchen,
Ron Garrow-Bus Driver, Philip Mitchell-Maintenance, Shannon Hall-Student
Success Coordinator, Tim Thompson from Mohawk Council of Akwesasne
Human Resources, Bob Firth-Technician, Rosie David, Kaitlyn MacDonald
and Cierra Jacobs who were connected with the program through the
Akwesasne Area Management Board.
Teachers from both programs were acknowledged and thanked for
their dedication in bringing out the best of the students in finishing
Margaret Lafrance explained one component that Iohahi:io has
that the main St. Lawrence program doesn't have is field placement,
and the offices that accepted the workers were acknowledged. Mohawk
Council Departments as well as the Native North American Travelling
College, district schools, Johnson O'Malley Program and Baldwin
"Every year they are always willing to participate in accepting
students," said Lafrance.
Sue Derouchie of the Business program said it was a fun two
years and she told of all the areas of study her students went through
and she hoped in the future they will return to the Adult Education
facility to help others.