Article co-written by Yzabelle Morris (Upper 6) & Jada-Marie Pierre (Lower 6), SJC SJ Scrabble Warriors.
Proverbs 14:23 says, “There is profit in hard work.” In the end, for each participating student of St Joseph’s Convent, St Joseph’s Scrabble Warriors, their diligence continues to produce a rich harvest.
On Saturday, October 29, 2022, the Trinidad and Tobago Scrabble Association (TTSA) held their first post-pandemic National Secondary Schools Scrabble Competition at the Couva Chamber of Commerce. The Scrabble Warriors of St Joseph’s Convent, St Joseph, participated and brought home the first-place trophy for the overall schools category.
This was also the first Scrabble competition that the school has taken part in following the loss of the team’s founder and mentor, Dr Anna-Maria Khan. One person in particular, spoke about the start of her Scrabble journey, and the impact Dr Khan had on her.
“I joined the club in Form 2 with the intention of occupying my time, so at that point I didn’t take it too seriously but thanks to Dr Khan, I fell in love with the game. I loved the complexity of it all, deciphering my rack was like trying to solve a puzzle. I was hooked.”
Those were the words of Jada-Marie Pierre, the President of the Game Social Club at St Joseph’s Convent, St Joseph, and Captain of the Scrabble Warriors team. After schools reopened post-pandemic, Jada-Marie bravely stepped up to both lead and organise the training and practices for the Scrabble Warriors at school.
When asked about the inspiration behind restarting the club, Jada-Marie commented, “After the isolation of Covid, I was craving the sisterhood and mental stimulation of the Scrabble team, so upon the reopening of school, I brought the idea of restarting the club to Ms Liverpool. We were getting back into the swing of things when the TTSA announced the return of their annual secondary schools’ tournament and we jumped at the opportunity.”
It took a lot of hard work, with training sessions as early as 6.30 a.m. before school began, at lunchtimes, and afternoons after school dismissal. New students needed to learn the rules and older players opted to refresh their memories. It was in those moments that winners were gradually moulded and refined.
The dedication, discipline and sheer passion of the girls shone at the competition when they played. The defining moment however was at the prize-giving ceremony at the end of the day. In both Seniors and Juniors, St Joseph’s Convent, St Joseph’s Scrabble Warriors had multiple awardees.
1st- Alisha Lakhan
2nd- Jada-Marie Pierre
6th- Alisa Alexander
7th- Yzabelle Morris
14th- Makayla Llewellyn
15th- Shani Jacobs
9th- Neyah Walcott
10th- Isabel Persad
Following that last National Secondary Schools Scrabble Championship, the team’s captain, Jada-Marie Pierre, now in Lower 6, has been invited to represent our twin island republic in Thailand at the WESPA Youth Cup, November 30–December 3, 2023.
This international tournament is the pinnacle of youth Scrabble competition, boasting participants from every corner of the world including Pakistan, Australia, The United Kingdom, India, and Qatar.
We are actively raising funds with the aspiration of providing the opportunity to allow our national flag to be waved proudly and triumphantly in a global arena.
If you would like to invest in the nation’s youth and sponsor our player, please contact our school (218-2434), and to prove to the rest of the world that the youth of Trinidad and Tobago are a force to be reckoned with in the mind sport of competitive Scrabble.