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Name:
Francis Noronha
Photo:
Academic Field:
English
Years at RTC:
1956-1958
Town of origin:
Zanzibar
Recent Residence:
Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada
Life after RTC:
I was born in Zanzibar but grew up in Nairobi where I attended the Dr. Ribeiro Goan School. It was a happy, carefree time and I am still in contact with several of my former classmates. We make many decisions each day, most of them trivial. My decision to become a teacher influenced the course of the rest of my life.

The two years I spent at the Teacher Training College, Nairobi, were formative years. I then taught primary school for a year and was fortunate to win a full Government Teachers Scholarship that took me first to the Royal Technical College to complete my A-Levels and then to the University of Bristol for a B.A. (English Honours) degree.

In April 1956, the Royal Technical College (later to become the University of Nairobi) opened its doors in a blaze of publicity as it was the first post-secondary multi-racial institution in Kenya. The responsibility of making the college a success fell upon the Faculty staff, drawn from all over the world, and the first batch of 200 students.

I had the honour of becoming the first elected President of the Students Union. I couldn't have asked for a finer team of officers to work with and we received support from the student body and excellent guidance from the Manager of the Halls of Residence, Roland Cooper. Together we took the first tentative steps towards establishing a comprehensive program of social, sporting and cultural activities (including the first crazy Rag Week!) that would be the pattern for the future. I am proud of what that first batch of Faculty and students achieved in those early years.

I thoroughly enjoyed my three years at the University of Bristol, returned to Kenya and resumed my career as a teacher. I served for ten years at Menengai High School, Nakuru, ending up as the Deputy Headmaster, before transferring to historic Allidina Visram High School, Mombasa. In 1974, I was appointed the first local Chief Examiner for English by the recently formed East African High School Examinations Syndicate.

In 1964, I married Cybele Carvalho with whom I had enjoyed a warm friendship for nine years ( talk about a slow worker!!!) and our daughter Lisa was born in 1965. Ten years later we made the decision to emigrate to Canada. We were sorry to leave Kenya, a country we loved for its natural beauty, its exciting wildlife and its beautiful people. Looking back, however, we made the right decision as Canada has been a rewarding experience in the last 37 years and a happy home for our family. Cybele and I continued our careers as educators here and Lisa is a Speech - Language Pathologist, now married and still resident in Lethbridge.

I retired in 1995 and Cybele in 1997 so we have already had several years enjoying retirement activities - travelling all over the world, volunteering in church and community activities, relaxing with friends past and present and generally keeping ourselves busy with fun activities. I would not change much of my life if I had the choice, and, among the many blessings that I am grateful for, are the two years I spent at the RTC and the impact that those two years had on the rest of my life.

This is the third Reunion Cybele and I are attending and we thank the Organizing Committee for all the time and trouble they have taken to bring us all together in Torquay.

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