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Dominican College are Ulster Champions!

Tuesday 17th April 2018

Yesterday for the first time in the history of Dominican College our U16 Gaelic team contested a first Ulster Colleges final. The boys have played and developed together over the past few seasons under their coach Mr Richard Carey and have grown into a formidable team. Many of the Dominican team play within their local GAA teams but many also come from a soccer and rugby background.

The team emerged victorious yesterday after a thrilling and very closely- contested match and we are all so proud of this wonderful achievement for Mr Carey and his team.

The match was played in very difficult conditions with a strong wind making it very difficult for the players, particularly when it came to scoring. Playing with a strong wind at their back Dominican started well with two quick points from Adam Kosinski and Alan Thompson. While Dominican dominated possession they failed to make it count on the scoreboard and St Johns looked very dangerous on the counter attack. With Dominican 0-2 to 0-1 up they were awarded a penalty which was brilliantly saved by Paudi Tunney, fortunately the rebound fell to Lorcan McMullen who hit the back of the net. Lewis Hawthorne followed this up with a a well taken point. A quick counter attack from St Johns saw full forward Rory Burns bag a well taken goal to make it a 1 point game.

Lorcan McMullen had another goal chance brilliantly saved by Tunney with the resulting 45 going wide. McMullen continued to make strong runs and the St Johns defence struggled to contain him, he tagged on a point and nearly finished the half with another goal. Despite dominating possession Dominican failed to capitalise and it looked like the chances they missed in the 1st half could come back to haunt them. They went in at the break leading by 2 points.

HT DOMINICAN 1-4 St Johns 1-2

Playing against a strong wind it was important Dominican started the 2nd half strong and that’s exactly what they did, two points in quick succession from Alan Thompson and Lorcan McMullen stretched the lead to 4. Dawid Ryzcko and Filip Rygielski covered a lot of ground in defence and their fitness was a great asset throughout the game. The introduction of Simon Garrity for St Johns was a great boost and he was causing all sorts of problems for the Dominican defence. McGarrity and Phelim Gallagher pegged Dominican back with two great points, however, after a great run from Alan Thompson he fed Kacper Sobera who unleashed a rocket of a shot into the roof of the net to give Dominican a 5 point lead. But back came St Johns with a goal from McGarrity and two points from Burns to level the scores with 10 minutes remaining. The Remainder of the game was a tense affair, Jack Lucas and Ciaran McLaughlin worked extremely hard and the introduction of Conor Carlisle provided a cool head and a safe pair of hands. At crucial times Dominican were able to relieve the pressure on their defence with some great penetrating runs, Jake Wallace made a couple of great runs to win crucial frees.

Two brilliant frees from Lorcan McMullen gave Dominican a 3 point lead with 5 minutes left. Under intense pressure the Dominican defence stood firm, with Chad O’Neill and Logan Johnson outstanding. Danny Liken made a number of excellent interceptions. Ryan Taggart was a calming influence at the back and was rarely troubled such was the dominance of the Dominican defence. With time nearly up Bart Drozd landed the insurance point of his weaker left foot, Dromore brought the gap back to 3 with the last play of the game.

The work rate and effort from all the Dominican players was incredible in the second half and they are worthy champions. At half time it looked like Dominican were going to struggle, however, to their credit they never gave up when St Johns made a comeback.

They say hard work always trumps talent, but when you bring the two together with belief and conviction it is a lethal, winning combination.

Well done lads, the whole school is really proud of you.

The Dominican Team:
Ryan Taggart, Logan Johnson, Chad 0’neill, Danny Liken, Jake Wallace, Filip Rygielski, Dawid Ryzcko, Lorcan McMullen capt, Alan Thompson, Jack Lucas, Ciaran McLaughlin, Bart Drozd, Kacper sobera, Lewis Hawthorne, Adam Kosinski, Conor Carlisle, Luke Carter Woods, Jude Kerr, Malachi Hendry

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Dominican pupils are all set for Lourdes Visit.


 Good luck to our four pupils who will travel to Lourdes this Easter as part of the Irish Pilgrimage Trust. The Dominican Students will be joining more than 1200 Volunteers and young people from across Ireland.

For Jessica and Aoife (Year 10) this will be their first experience helping to care for younger pupils with special needs and both girls are very excited about having been given the opportunity to partake in the pilgrimage.

Jack and Jordan, both Year 14, will return to Lourdes as carers having previously been as younger pupils. Both boys described their previous visit as “truly life-changing” and cannot wait to return next week. There is a strong international dimension to the pilgrimage with more than 5000 young people from other countries due to arrive in Lourdes next weekend.

The group have been busy collecting money for the IPT would like to thank all those who helped and supported their fundraising efforts. To date the group have raised in the region of seventeen hundred pounds.

Fr Raymond will also travel to Lourdes as part of the Irish group and we wish them all the best in their mission.

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Stem Technology Competition Success

Well done to our three Technology teams who took part in a Rotary Technology Tournament last Wednesday.

The three teams, one each from years 9, 10 and 11 travelled to Loreto College to compete in a Technology competition. Mr Hynds, our Head of Technology, accompanied the groups and was delighted by the way each pupil and group reacted to the challenges they were set.

Our Year 9 team, Charlotte, Rachel, Joseph and Jack were the overall winners of the competition and were each awarded with an Amazon gift voucher along with the hour and pride of being victors.

Each group was judged on their ability to plan and collaborate as a team, to analyse the given problem and their awareness of the principles of engineering, to come up with an effective solution and to present and communicate their ideas. The final points for each team were awarded on the realisation of their project.

Charlotte and Rachel provided this summary of their day’s work and success:

'For the S.T.E.M competition, we were required to design and make a satellite launcher. It consisted of a cup and a ball. The ball had to be launched straight up into the air and through a hoop. There were extra points added if the ball travelled all the way up to the ceiling, and if it landed on the target. When launching the ball, students had to be at least one metre away from it. We were also required to make a portfolio on our project. It had to include diagrams of our structure, drawings, and pieces of writing.

Our project went well at the start, and our ideas were unique to other groups. However, we experienced difficulties with getting the ball to travel high enough. These were overcome by adjusting the rubber bands and the position of the cup. After we finished making our projects, the judges marked them and tested them on the testing rig.

The winners were announced and we were delighted to be announced the overall winners. We would like to thank Mr Hynds for all his help and support in the run up to the competition”.

Well done to all our students involved in this competition.

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Francofest 2018


Francofest 2018 is the first language festival of its kind in Northern Ireland. It offers the opportunity for Year 10 pupils of French to explore and develop their linguistic skills in a safe yet realistic environment.

The journey in our school began by holding a competition to decide who the lucky four pupils would be to represent Dominican College, Portstewart. After a painstaking deliberation process, Miss Ellis finally arrived at the final list of candidates with the help of Mrs O’Connor.

Pupils Michèle Riche, Jessie Riché, Romali Williamson and Enya Skye Hamilton were chosen, and began their preparations at lunchtime with Miss Ellis. Both Year 10 French classes assisted with the ideas and due to the popularity of the competition with our pupils, we ran our own ‘DCP Francofest 2018’ with prizes for the following categories:

-Most creative
-Best marketing / sales
-Best customer service
-Best French
-WOW! Factor

The final four decided to go with ‘Macron’s Macaroons’ as their Trade Stall product. They developed a brand, logo and concept for their product – to honour French presidents past and present. After much deliberation, the final flavours were:

• Sarkozy Rosé – a strawberry flavoured macaroon inspired by Nicholas Sarkozy
• Chirac Attaque – a pistachio flavoured treat named after Jacques Chirac
• François Framboise – a raspberry flavoured macaroon to honour François Hollande

Our day began with a slightly earlier than usual journey to the train station. As we travelled, we rehearsed our role-plays and got into the French zone! When we arrived, it was go time! We had to set up our stall and get ready to face the judges. As the teachers were whisked away, the pupils had to rely on their own skills to promote and sell their products. After a long 45 minutes, the teachers were allowed to return to their pupils and deconstruct the stall.

We then had lunch in the South Dining Hall, and had the opportunity to catch up with some of the other candidates from schools all over Northern Ireland. Following this, we heard from Benoit Le Devedec from the Institut Français (IF) in London – the official body of the French government responsible for promoting French language and culture in the UK. He told us about the many benefits of learning French, and how it could boost your career prospects if you study it at GCSE, A-Level and beyond.

To end the day in style, we received a guided tour of the Queen’s University campus by current PGCE Modern Languages Students. We were able to pose at the famous Lanyon Building, and even slipped through the wardrobe doors to Narnia in the C.S Lewis Room at the library.

Overall, it was a brilliant day, and we at DCP are very proud of our pupils for their creativity, skills and passion for languages. Well done Year 10! Here’s what our pupils thought about Francofest 2018:

“When I went to Francofest in Queen’s on the train I enjoyed going. When we got off the train we went straight to Queens. All of the assistants were very friendly and made us feel very welcome. Although we didn’t win any prizes at our stand it was fun to role play and set up the stand. After all the judges came round we had a talk about languages which was very good. After the talk we had a tour of Queen’s which we all enjoyed a lot. Overall Francofest went very well. I would recommend future pupils to go as it was very enjoyable.”
-Jessie 10-3

“I thought Francofest was an amazing experience for socialising and commercialising. I really enjoyed the experience and the people there. The judges were lovely and the other schools had amazing ideas. I had an incredible time and the whole trip was so packed with fun surprises. I really hope the next group to go has such an awesome time as I had.”
-Enya 10-3

“I really enjoyed Francofest as I feel it was a very enjoyable learning experience that gave us information on how French can influence your life and provides you with life experiences and jobs you wouldn’t get otherwise. When we did the actual French speaking stall it gave us an amazing opportunity to meet new schools and people while improving our French language. We were given a tour of Queen’s University which I feel was necessary as it gave us an insight on our future lives and showed us what our lives would be like if we went there. I hope Francofest continues and our school goes next year as I think it is a brilliant chance to learn new things.
C’était excellent!!!”
-Romali 10-1

Article written by Miss Ellis.

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Social justice in action


Well done to our lower and upper sixth pupils in their John Paul II awards.

Eight of our Year 13 pupils have just completed their training with Age Concern and will now begin their volunteering work as meal time companions at a local Care Home, Madelayne Court.

The girls are pictured here with Nicola and Nicky from Age Concern; thank you both for the support and training you have given our pupils.

Meanwhile our thirteen Upper Sixth John Paul Award pupils have just received their Gold Awards at a special ceremony in St Killian’s College.

These pupils have worked for the past year by volunteering in local churches, the school and within their local community with a strong focus on social justice and faith development.

These pupils are pictured with their John Paul II Certificates and gold medals.

Well done to Miss Smyth and Mrs Willighan for all their work within the John Paul Awards.

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Friends of DCP meeting Wednesday 21st February


The next meeting of the Friends of Dominican College Portstewart Association will be held on Wednesday 21st February 2018 at 7.30pm in the school.

This is OPEN to all parents of students at the school, current senior sixth formers, past pupils and members of the local DCP Community.


We look forward to seeing you there.

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