BY Dollita Okine, 3:30pm July 03, 2024,

Couple share their first-ever graduation in emotional moment 

For both Javan and Shamoy, this was their first time taking part in an academic institution's graduation ceremony. Photo Credit: Jamaican Star

Shamoy Ferron Smith and her husband, Javan Smith, graduated together for the first time last month. The couple, who first met in their high school years, recently received their degrees from L.E.A.D. Mentorship Theological Seminary Bible College. There are branches of the online school located in Jamaica, the U.S., and the UK.

For both Javan and Shamoy, this was their first time taking part in an academic institution’s graduation ceremony. Shamoy told The Jamaica Star, “It was a mix of emotions. I wanted to just smile because what the history about my husband is, he has never graduated in all his life. At basic school there was not a graduation. Our primary school had a graduation but our parents could not afford it and the same thing for high school.” She said that traveling to the graduation really caused them to reflect on their journey.

Even though she and her spouse enrolled in Lewisville High School [in St Elizabeth] in 2000, she recalled that they didn’t reunite until 2014.

“Back then, we couldn’t get along at all. He was my worst nightmare, and I was his worst nightmare. I could not look at him [because] he would get upset, and he could not look at me, it would trigger me,” she recounted.

Shamoy, a practicing nurse at the time, converted Javan to her Christian religion, which led to his baptism in 2016 and marriage in December of that year. The dedicated wife pushed Javan to pursue theology education, and after trying to find an institution for him to attend, Dr Karlen Atkinson, the founder of L.E.A.D., urged her to apply as well.

Though the opportunity was wonderful, it originally appeared overwhelming due to financial constraints, as they needed to make payments in two weeks. Nevertheless, they received a call from Atkinson, who informed them that they could begin their studies and pay the fees later.

Finally enrolled, the couple had to navigate through work and studies, and Shamoy shifted from practical nursing to hairdressing to accommodate her ministry commitments. A year later, the two were successful, and Javan graduated with honors—a moment that filled them both with great joy.

Shamoy now plans to continue serving the church community and leading as she has taken on a new role as marketing manager for their alma mater’s Jamaica campus.

“We have a feeding programme for the homeless in Santa Cruz, Black River, and New Market,” she remarked.

Last Edited by:Mildred Europa Taylor Updated: July 3, 2024


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