Nicola Sturgeon once quoted, ‘A good education is the most important gift we can give to our young people’. I agree with that statement wholeheartedly. Across the world, young people are using education and discipline to shape a better world. Sarrah-Ann Allen is an example of a youth leader who is determined to use her skills and passion for learning to make a difference. She intends to impact the world positively, using education as her tool and fuel.
At just 19 years old, Sarrah-Ann has a significant number of accomplishments tucked under her belt. She is the past Head Girl of Ardenne High School, where she placed on the Caribbean Examinations Council’s (CXC) regional merit list for both Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) and the Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE). Being an all-rounder, she participated in many co-curricular activities and captained both the netball and lawn-tennis teams. She is also a two-time recipient of the WFUNA International Model United Nations (WIMUN’s) Diplomacy Award.
Sarrah-Ann is a first-year student at Dartmouth College in the United States. Following the advice of the Honourable Bruce Golding given during an Ardenne function, Sarrah-Ann is currently combining her academic interests while preparing for a lifetime of careers. Fanning her flame of excellence, she is a Great Issues Scholar and an executive for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). Sarrah-Ann is also on the cheer and dance teams and is a member of the Hill Winds Society and Christian Union. Recently, she was an attendee of the Black Ivy League Business Conference.
Good News Jamaica recently got the opportunity to have a quick ‘reasoning’ with the exemplary youth from Spanish Town, St. Catherine. In the hope that the conversation will inspire our readers, below we share insight into the life of this inspiring teen. Enjoy!
Success and Support
Sarrah-Ann credits her drive and passion for succeeding to her parent’s influence in her life. She explained that her parents’ sacrifices and hard work to provide her with quality education fuels her to be great:
She also acknowledges God as the source of her strength. Through her faith and prayers, she has been able to overcome situations:
Advice from others and subsequently her leadership positions moulded her into the impactful person she is today. She shared that through life’s responsibilities, she found her interests, realised her strengths and worked on her weaknesses. In addition, she uses every experience to propel her. Below, she shares one of the greatest lessons she has learnt:
Behind every successful person is a great support system. There is nothing like having somebody or a group of people to lean on or to cheer you on when your strength is waning. Whenever Sarrah-Ann feels low or just needs support, her family and friends are always there:
Jamaican in the Ivy
Sarrah is proud of being accepted to an Ivy League University. It was like ‘ a dream come true’. In no time, she had to prepare to adjust to being in a new environment.
She also describes her upbringing in Jamaica as an advantage. Growing up in Jamaica for Sarrah-Ann was an exciting cultural experience. It has prepared her to deal with the ‘real world’.
Advice to Students
When we asked Sarrah-Ann what advice she might have for struggling students who have big dreams but are not as academically successful right now, her answer was priceless. “Discipline is the key to unlocking your full potential”. She encouraged students who might be failing academically to be consistent and remain focused. Everyone should listen to the response below.
The opportunity to reason with another Ardennite made my heart smile. It reminded me of our motto: “Deo Duce Quare Optima – with God as guide, seek the best.” Listening to her sound words provided extra fuel to my determination to unlock my full potential. Keep up the great work Sarrah-Ann, continue to be an inspiration to our youth.