Q&A with Clersaint, president of the Class of 2020

When the Class of 2020 graduates on October 16, Clersaint Cenexant will address the audience as president of the class. We asked this bright young man, who has been attending Grace Emmanuel School for the last three years, some questions about his life, education, and hopes for the future.

Q. What motivates you in your education?

My family is my first source of motivation. I am the very first person in my family to graduate, though I am my mother’s fifth and youngest child. This is a challenge for me that I’ve overcome.

Q. What are you most passionate about at school?

I am passionate about reading and really good at math. I love drawing.

Q. What do you want to accomplish with your life? Why?

I want to accomplish many things in life, but the very first step is to go to university to become an engineer, because I would like to see my mom living comfortably in her own house. My mom is a saleswoman, a single mom, and she’s always fought to take care of her children.

Q. Where did you grow up? What was it like?

I grew up in Lafito, but that was not a good experience in my childhood or my teenage years. That’s why my mom had me go live with a brother of mine in Cabaret.

Q. Do you have any key mentors or people who deeply influence who you are and what you believe?

I’ve got a very good friend of mine who helps me see life from another perspective.

Q. Do you have any moments that changed your life?

Something that changed my life is my relationship with my Dad. Mom and Dad went different ways when I was 3, and from that moment on, my dad never took care of me. When it was time for me to graduate from kindergarten, Mom did not have money, yet my dad did not help her out even though he was aware of it. I got help from a teacher because I was good at school. Because of my father’s behavior, I’ve made the decision to honor any responsibility that I have.

Q. If you could see lasting change in Haiti, what would it be?

Insecurity is the biggest issue in Haiti, and it’s lasted for too long. That’s what I would change if I could.

Q. Do you have a favorite Bible verse or story?

My favorite verse is Daniel 3:17, “If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to deliver us from it, and he will deliver us from Your Majesty’s hand.” I learned it and believe it. I know my God can deliver my mom since she is His servant. I am a Christian, too, and hope to be baptized soon.

Q. Do you have a favorite memory at school?

My favorite memory at school is my friends. Some of them are going to be my friends forever.

The Grace Emmanuel School soccer team in January 2019. Clersaint is on the far right, in the yellow pinnie.

Q. If you could add one thing to school, what would it be?

One of the things that I think is necessary at school is a library.

Q. Do you remember your first day at school? What was it like?

Of course, yes, I remember my first day of school at GES. I was in 10th grade and things were strange to me, I knew nobody. I was so, so shy, but it’s definitely not the same now.

Q. What surprised you most about Grace Emmanuel School?

The functionality of the school surprised me, because in my previous schools the teaching and the learning was not as good as it is here. There is a cafeteria here, the classrooms are well-equipped, there’s more friendly students here, and the teachers are more qualified.

Q. What would you say to someone considering sponsoring a student?

I’d tell that person that sponsoring a child in Haiti means so much to the parents. It is one of the ways someone could help Haiti.

Q. Is there anything you would like to say to your sponsor?

I want to say thank you so much to my lovely and caring sponsor, because after my will to move forward, my sponsorship was crucial. I was not only sponsored financially, but I was loved and prayed for. May God bless my dear sponsor.

Q. Is there anything else you’d like to share?

I’d like to thank the staff of the GES, the administration, the Board, the teachers. Thank you for opening the school door to me and making me excel. Keep on giving the same opportunity to more Haitian kids. I love GES. I am ready to move forward, and I’ll succeed in Jesus’ name!