KC Profiles Volume

Ivor Nugent, MD

by Dr. Cedric Lazarus
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The son of Calbert and Edris Nugent, Ivor came to KC in 1968 as an eager and bright youngster from Chetolah Park Primary School. The family was at the time living at the western end of North Street so it was only natural that he should attend KC which was at the eastern end.

Over the years, his classmates included such boys as Kenneth Vaughan, now an eminent Orthopaedic Surgeon, Oliver 'Rasta' Harrison, head boy '74-'75, Harold Butler noted musician, Peter-John Gordon, former UWI lecturer and now an economist with the PIOJ, Barry Gordon of radio fame and the late Leonard Lothian.

His favourite teachers over the years were Claude Evans, Marjorie Whylie and Frances Coke. He recalls that in third form many of them were blazing the trail academically until they were joined by a boy transferred from Titchfield High called Orett Campbell who in his first term in 3A turned the academic hierarchy of the class on its head by going straight to the top, much to the surprise of his new classmates. A few years later the same Orett Campbell went into the record books by becoming the first student in Jamaica to play on two winning Schools Challenge teams.

Ivor credits headboy, Selbourne Goode, for introducing him to both basketball and quiz and he eventually represented the school at both – with excellence. He played on the winning KC basketball teams from 1971 to 1974, a stellar period during which KC was the top high school team and recalls that players from that era such as Dennis 'Cranky' Thompson, Donald Turner, Michael Strachan and Hamlin Pagon eventually went on to represent Jamaica in basketball. Ivor himself was selected to the All School's Basketball Squad in 1975, his final year at KC.

One of his most memorable moments came in 1975 when the team of Orett Campbell, Donovan 'Pip' Shaw, Barrington Salmon and himself successfully defended the JBC Schools' Challenge Quiz Trophy which was won the previous year by the team of Ian Jackson, Michael Fitz-Henley, Orett Campbell and Audley 'Gilly' Jones. Ivor himself was the reserve player on that 1974 team. The 70's was truly KC's decade in Schools Challenge as the school also won the competition in '77 with Stephen Vasciannie, Charlton Collie, Maurice Bailey and Maurice Haynes. All these teams were coached by the superb Frances Coke who remains one of the most successful School Challenge coaches of all time. In those days the teams lived by their motto "We're not interested in the possibility of defeat."

Being a big sport aficionado, Ivor was expected to know the answer to all and every sport question that the team got in Schools Challenge. If he got an answer wrong or failed to answer a sport question on TV, he had to answer to the entire sixth form the next day. In fact Ivor was, and probably still is, a walking encyclopaedia of the achievements of

KC from the 60's. For him, Schools' Challenge was more than just quiz: it was an integral part of his school life; and in Frances Coke the team had not only a coach but a role model, a guidance councillor, a teacher, a mentor and a big sister. He learnt the importance of team work, time management and many other skills which he finds just as critical and important today as they were thirty years ago. In those days, the first prize in Schools Challenge included a trip to Trinidad and Tobago, an experience the entire team still remembers with great detail.

At school it was often said that Ivor's glistening, white teeth were visible long before he was. It was as if he was so proud of them that he wanted to show them off to all his friends. Some suspected that he had much more than thirty two.

On leaving KC, he studied Medicine at the UWI and graduated in 1982 with other KC old boys Paul Hunt, now a Paediatrician in the Bahamas, Kenneth Vaughan, Orthopaedic surgeon and Donovan Calder, noted ophthalmologist. Ivor practiced in the Bahamas from 1983 to 1987 and after a five year stint in Jamaica he migrated to New York in 1992 to commence postgraduate training at Harlem Hospital Center (Internal Medicine internship) and Residency training in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Kingsbrook Jewish medical Center in Brooklyn, NY. He completed a Fellowship in Primary Care Sports Medicine in 1997 at Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Santa Clara, California

He later moved to Florida and became integrally involved with the KCOBA Florida Chapter where today he is amongst a cadre of hard working members. One of Ivor's driving ambitions is to give back to KC as much as KC gave to him and to this end he devotes a lot of his time to the activities of the Chapter.

Ivor is married to Kerstene and has two children. It should not surprise anyone that both of his children are already involved in sports. Omari, only six is an avid junior footballer and Camille at 8yrs old is already competing successfully at track and field.

He goes to Jamaica whenever he can and was one of the many old boys from Florida who journeyed to Kingston for Boys Champs '06 to see KC win by a short nose from Calabar to retain the Trophy for the 6th year in a row. To him it brought back memories of sitting in the Grand Stand at the National Stadium in the early '70's as KC swept all before them. As he sat in the Grand Stand he remembers saying to himself, "In my 7 years at KC we never lost Boys Champs and it was never this close!"

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