Seventeen-year-old student at Newell High School in St. Elizabeth, Delaney Campbell, stands in the Chemistry lab at his school. He passed eight Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) subjects this year, scoring grade ones in Chemistry and Biology, and is currently enrolled in the school’s Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE) programme.
Photo: Contributed

Seventeen-year-old Delaney Campbell plans to turn his childhood fascination with planes into a rewarding career as an airline pilot.

Despite challenging circumstances, the youngster is keeping his eyes on the prize, as he is determined to create a better life for himself, his mother and little brother.

The student at Newell High School in St. Elizabeth, has carved out a path to achieving his goal, which includes passing his secondary-level examinations and matriculating to aviation school.

“Because of financial difficulties, I think I’m going to join the Jamaica Defence Force (JCF) and advance into the aviation branch,” he tells JIS News.

He remains on course, passing eight Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) subjects with grade ones in Chemistry and Biology, and is pursuing Biology, Entrepreneurship and Communications at the Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE) level.

Delaney says his motivation to achieve success is fuelled by “the surroundings I grow up in… and wanting a better life for me and my family”.

“Like many Jamaicans, we are faced with financial hardships, and growing up in a single-parent home, with my mother being the breadwinner, we had to make sacrifices,” he says.

While noting that it was especially difficult “growing up as a male without my father as a role model,” Delany says he is anchored by his mother’s support.

“Where I live, I don’t have Internet connection, so that was one of my biggest challenges [for school]. When I couldn’t get connected, most times my mother bought me phone credit. She always tried to ensure I wasn’t absent from class,” he tells JIS News.

Delaney admits that he sometimes struggles with self-doubt but is determined not to let his fears derail his dreams.

“I don’t think I can ever get rid of it. Most times, that’s the same self-doubt which helps to motivate me because I don’t want to feel like that anymore,” he shares.

He is encouraging other young people to remain focused on their dreams and to “surround yourself with persons who you know will assist and motivate you whenever you are having challenges”.

“At times, it will seem very difficult and as if you can’t go on, but trust me, continue to push forward. It will be worth it in the end,” he says.

Meanwhile, Chemistry Teacher at Newell High, Rushane Dwyer, lauds Delaney as the “epitome of a model student”.

“He is an astonishingly dedicated and enthusiastic young man who is passionate about learning [and] who is admired and regarded highly by his school family,” he tells JIS News.

Principal of Newell High, Andrew Morris, adds that the school has positive expectations for the youngster’s future.

He notes that Delaney is focused on excellence and academic success.

“He is the quintessence of virtues such as discipline, hard work, being respectful and loving. Delaney is very passionate about learning,” he adds.

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