Nil Sine Labore, indeed.
On the Saturday morning of 29th July, VJC seemed livelier than ever. It was the day of VJC’s 33rd College Day, where Victorians over the decades come together to celebrate the college’s achievements.
For the returning Victorians, it was a special and nostalgic trip down the memory lane. An event full of grandeur, College Day provides a platform for the celebration of a myriad of accomplishments. This honours the efforts and dedication of the students, teachers and staff who have brought the college to the height she is at today.
The hall was a flurry of activity as students and guests, wandered around to find their seats. The audience then waited in anticipation for the arrival of this year’s Guest of Honour, Mr Vincent Chong, a Victorian from the 86 cohort and CEO of Singapore Technologies Engineering Ltd. As the emcees of the ceremony, Cedric and Tammie, announced the arrival of the Guest of Honour, everyone rose to welcome Mr Chong with a standing ovation, with VJC’s very own Symphonic Band playing a melodious prelude that complemented the vibrant greeting.
After the crowd settled down, the ceremony kicked off with a rousing performance of ‘Semoga Bahagia’ (May You Achieve Happiness), featuring the sonorous yet smooth tunes of the Band’s instruments in addition to the sweet, gentle harmonies of the VJC Choir. Ms Ek then took the stage to present the College Report of 2016/2017, boasting many statistics that outlined the college’s excellence in both the academic and co-curricular arenas. The loud cheers and resounding applause from the crowd were testament to the Victorians’ pride for the college’s commendable achievements.
The awards ceremony soon followed and this year’s valedictorian, Benjamin Choong, took the stage and imparted a few words of wisdom. He imparted essential advice to the juniors and included words of appreciation for his teachers, his friends and his parents in his VJC journey. Victorians, we can sure agree that it was certainly a heart-warming speech, wasn’t it?
Time flies when one is having fun. The long-awaited concert segment of the day finally arrived and the crowd was treated to breathtaking performances by two of VJC’s Performing Arts Groups. First was a dance segment put up by VJC’s very own Dance Club. The dance piece was a contemporary piece called ‘Forward’, which achieved ‘Distinction’ at the Singapore Youth Festival. The swift and graceful movements of the dancers, coupled with their elegant chemistry, complemented the music very well.
However, for the dancers, this was much more than just another performance. As Jie Ying of 16S62, also the Vice-President of VJC’s Dance, said, “The most memorable moment for me would be pulling off the last ever performance to the most important group of audience as a VJ dancer. It was also the last performance we have together as a batch so those few minutes on stage will really be etched in my memory.” Evidently, the senior dancers poured their emotions and passion into their final performance which marked the final end of their journey.
VJ’s Choir’s performance was next. A piece called ‘Bunga Sayang’, which was a perfect match for the atmosphere in the hall that day. With their beautiful voices, they captured the attention and hearts of the audience. Though their voices faded with the end of the song, their harmonious melodies remained an echo resounding within our hearts, and the audience rewarded them with a generous round of applause as the song drew to a close.
Just like many school events, the ceremony ended with everyone rising to sing the Victorian Anthem. Looking around, the sense of belonging Victorians felt to the college was evidently reflected, as Victorians, students and alumni alike sang with pride and gusto. “I felt a sense of belonging and camaraderie with my fellow Victorians as we all faced the flag and proudly sang the anthem (as) a big and inclusive family,” said Cedric, one of the emcees of the day.
The calligrapher, who made the College day gift for Mr Vincent Chong (GOH), said “At first I was excited but worried. I was wondering whether the Guest Of Honour would like the gift. However, later on, I felt that I had tried my best already. Here’s to hoping he liked it.”
Tamara from 17S34 also remarked, “The teachers, student helpers and school helpers put in tremendous effort to make College Day a success. Although term 3 has been really hectic, the planning committee has been very detailed and dedicated leading up to the event. I think we ought to be extremely grateful for that.”
With such testimony of the significance of College Day to the school body and the alumni, we also hope that all Victorians enjoyed College Day in their own ways. Let us continue to keep the Victorian spirit burning bright, and strive forward, while reminding ourselves: Nil Sine Labore – nothing without labour.
Rachel Lim 17S31
Yong Hwee Shi 17S62
Constance Tan 17S62