Receiving a graduation invitation in the mail may be a common occurance for many of you. That small envelope that begins to show its face in your home towards the end of a school year is a vivid reminder that a “Congratulations” is in order. Would you believe us if we told you graduation invitations were sent out this year in Haiti as well?
Saturday, May 12, 2012, 48 students and more than 300 family members and friends gathered in Fermathe Church, to celebrate the graduating class of 2012. Over the past 6 years Baptist Haiti Mission has been home to one of the only Master’s of Education programs in the country of Haiti. The program is fully accredited by Laurel University, in Highpoint North Carolina.
As BHM seeks to assist the church of Haiti by training and equipping leaders, we were honored to have the opportunity to host our first Master’s graduation ceremony. Professors, families, and friends watched as 48 students walked the aisle with their heads held high as they celebrated their graduation after countless hours of hard work and sacrifice.
Above, Pasteur Jean Claude Smith received his diploma from Dr. Larry McCullough, President of Laurel University. Behind, Dr. Bob Brumley Dean of Education smiles at the accomplishments of the students.
“The graduation ceremony was a combination of a lot of hard work, vision, and dreams that BHM and the Christian leaders in Haiti have had for many years. The Master’s of Education program is completely grounded in a Biblical Worldview. We know that this ceremony is only the beginning for the impact these graduates will have in the schools, churches, and communities of Haiti,” said Dr. Brumley.
Saturday’s graduation was not only for the students but for the families as well. “The families have sacrificed time with their loved ones as they allowed them to spend time away in their studies. The families deserved the graduation ceremony as well. It was a great reminder of what a huge impact their loved ones are making in Haiti, we’re talking Kingdom Impact,” Brumley said.
A reception was given in the conference center on the mission immediately following the graduation ceremony. Smiles, hugs, and pictures were shared all around as the celebration carried on throughout the afternoon.
Several of the students expressed the fact that they felt completely overwhelmed throughout the ceremony. The Lord’s presence was truly evident as students were encouraged to reflect on His faithfulness in their lives over the years, and anticipate His plans for their future.
Some students are now making plans to work towards their Doctorate. For others the ceremony marked the end of an academic journey. Although the specific direction for each student will vary, those of us here at BHM and Laurel University are incredibly proud of the work that has taken place in the lives of these students over the past few years. We would like to invite you to join as as we say…
Congratulations to the Haiti Graduating Class of Laurel University, 2012!