By Laureen F. Guenther Times Contributor
Rosebud School of the Arts celebrated its annual graduation and awards event, Oct. 1. The ROSAs – Recognizing Outstanding Student Achievement – featured an afternoon ceremony in Rosebud’s Opera House, and a banquet in the Haskayne-Kenney Mercantile.
Forty-two categories of awards, scholarships and bursaries were presented to students in all four years of study, and the gifts totaled over $49,000, said emcee Jordan Cutbill, a 2005 graduate. Rosebud School of the Arts (RSA) has an enrollment of about 30 students, he said, and this financial support will cover about 21 per cent of their tuition.
Nine students graduated with RSA’s one-year Certificate in Theatre Foundations. Two students received a Certificate of Completion in Open Studies, and one student was honored for completing a Music Internship. Ten students graduated with a two-year Diploma.
Five students had completed four years of studies, including a self-produced Final Project. Kelti Berry and Anna Schroeder had majored in Theatre Arts. Emily Cambridge, Justin Lanouette and Sarah Robertson majored in Acting.
The five graduates received Rosebud School of the Arts’ highest honor: Fellow of Rosebud School of the Arts (FRSA), and were welcomed into the Rosebud School of the Arts Guild. Each new FRSA was honored with a video presentation, and a personalized speech by their faculty advisor.
Paul F. Muir, RSA’s education director, also welcomed the five new FRSAs into the RSA Guild, and encouraged them to consider what Guild membership means.
RSA’s goal, Muir said, is to inspire students to become catalysts for transformation in the world, summarized in the school’s tagline, “Be Transformed. Transform Culture.”
When that transformation happens at RSA, he said, it’s not because the school has plentiful money and other resources, since that is not the case. Nor does it happen because the school has gifted instructors, or because the students grow through rich apprenticeships in Rosebud Theatre, al
True transformation only happens, Muir said, through the love of God by the Holy Spirit.
“Lives can only be truly enriched by the touch of the Spirit,” he said. “Thankfully, that Spirit is here.”
The Holy Spirit is working in the Rosebud valley, in the hamlet and in all the classes, chapels and other school events, he said, and the Spirit touches the heart of every person involved with RSA.
That doesn’t mean the transformation is easy, he said. It requires struggle, vulnerability, failure and getting back up again. He read from the biblical book of Romans, which says suffering builds endurance and shapes our characters, which in turn teaches us to hope and to anticipate God’s goodness.
“We tell stories to enrich lives, to transform culture,” Muir said. “We want to do it with joy and gratitude and hope. And stories have the powers to reach into our hearts and our minds and plant the seeds for transformation.”
“To be part of the Guild means to be a partner with the Holy Spirit, on this mission to enrich lives and transform culture.”