Dozens of alumni—called “AlumKnights”—and current Mount Carmel School students gathered at the “Night with the Knights” celebration at the Fiesta Resort & Spa Hibiscus Hall last Saturday to celebrate over six decades of faith, excellence, and success. The night also served as a tribute to the school’s founders, Fr. Arnold Bendowski and the Mercedarian sisters.
School president Galvin Deleon Guerrero said that current students and graduates continue to serve as a true example of the legacy and success that Bendowski and the founders envisioned.
“As AlumKnights many of you have studied at some of the most prestigious colleges and organizations. Many of you have returned to your island to give back. You prove that Mount Carmel is more than just a bunch of classrooms, textbooks, and curriculum. You prove that MCS is truly a legacy of faith, excellence, and success,” he said. “I salute you all for fulfilling the dream for Mount Carmel School.”
Guerrero also enumerated the current progress the school is making. He said that after a 10-year enrollment decline the school has increased the enrollment by a third. The school also adopted and implemented more vigorous standards for student achievement, and its students continue to excel with higher scores on standardized tests and show impressive achievements in extracurricular activities.
“The knights of today are your legacy by continuing the school tradition of faith, excellence, and success,” he added.
Mercedarian Sister Martha Ramarul said is was “fun and good to see old faces and wonderful to see so much appreciation for our school.”
Ramarul said the many successful government, business, and community leaders who have graduated from Mount Carmel over the past decades “is something priceless” for an educator like herself to see.
The event also featured presentations and a special dance number from the school’s Theatre Club.
Delegate Gregorio Kilili C. Sablan was also bestowed the AlumKnight of the Year award, making him the school’s first non-graduate to be presented with the prestigious award. See sidebar.
Students and graduates from different years, including the class of 1964, spent the night sharing their memorable experiences and pictures of their high school years.
Current MCS sophomore Jonathan Pangelinan shared that it was interesting for him to see dozens of graduates together under one roof. “Attending the event made me cherish the meaning of what it is to be a Knight,” he said.
Delegate Sablan also presented a special proclamation recognizing the efforts and accomplishments of Mount Carmel School on Saipan and Eskuelen San Francisco de Borja on Rota—the only two Catholic institutions in the CNMI.
One recent MCS graduate said the event was a time to “look back at our glory days and look forward to see what we as a community can do for our students today.”