Mister Chairman, Honored Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen
It is a great honor for me to address you today on the auspicious occasion of the first official school day of The International School of Rhodes. We have been on a truly memorable journey to get to this place. First of all, I should like to pay tribute to those men and women who had the vision to establish an International Baccalaureate (IB for short) division of Suzhou International Foreign Language School. We are part of a rapidly growing international movement, the expansion of the IB school network, which is developing faster in the People’s Republic of China than anywhere else in the world.
Time does not permit me to name all of those who have labored long and hard, over the past five years, to get this School established, but I wish to commend all of those brave men and women for their vision, fortitude, resilience and determination to establish The International School of Rhodes. I should like to state, without any hesitation, that it is an extraordinary privilege to work or learn here. We all need to be cognizant of the fact that quality education is never to be taken for granted.
I should like to say a special word to the parents of our founding students. I praise you for your decision to send your sons and daughters to TISR. We are profoundly aware of the enormity of your decision and we shall endeavor, with all our strength and determination, to make you look back and delight in the decision you made to send your sons and daughters to this School. We have assembled a great team of staff members. We are on track to establish TISR as a truly great school!
I turn, now, to our founding students, 5 girls and 7 boys. We are proud of you all, and we commend you on your decision to come to TISR. We trust that you will find being at this School an enriching, challenging and rewarding experience. The IB is, as you well know, a demanding course of study, but it will prepare you excellently for life, on the one hand, and for university study, on the other hand.
I should like to give you students an example of life skills drawn from someone I have always admired. The South African golfer, Gary Player, is the 4th most successful golfer in history, having won 9 major tournaments in his playing career. When he was at his peak performance one of his colleagues suggested that he, Gary Player, was lucky on the golf course. Gary Player stated, in response, that the more he practiced the luckier he became! In other words, luck had nothing to do with Gray Player’s success. He was noted for his commitment to keeping fit and practicing well beyond what most of his colleagues did. Winning a competition or lottery can be attributed to luck, but success comes with hard work and application. We are sure that each of you will achieve great success at TISR through hard work and dedication, but also through leading a balanced life, which must include fun and enjoyment, too.
In conclusion may I repeat that it is a profound honor for me to lead this team at TISR. I look forward to an exciting and wonderful future for TISR! Thank you.