GRADUATION: the act of graduating or the state of being graduated or the ceremony at which school or college degrees and diplomas are conferred.

Of course we associate graduation with students leaving school or finishing university.

According to some of these pictures, however, graduation can also mean puppies who have learned to be obedient and even people who have come to this country and 'graduated' as citizens.

Graduation actually symbolises life itself. You reach the peak of your current achievement and then you plunge down to the bottom of the ladder again.

You become a 'big kid' in pre-school and then a humble junior. You are a senior a few years later and then you start secondary school - at the bottom of the pile again.

Then, of course, there is the first step in becoming a grown up. As a senior you are probably even allowed to wear different clothes to those below you. You have the recognisability that comes with being chosen as a prefect and the power is all yours.

That is until next year when you start university and back down the ladder you go!

Up again and it is graduation and you are at the top of heap - and then you get a job and so it goes on.

Judging by these photographs, however, it would appear that this roller coaster ride through life is a happy one for most - we hope all these photographed are now in the jobs they wanted, or perhaps they have gone in a completely different tangent and found a new niche in life.

We also need to congratulate young Viktor who, at 16, passed the Citizen Service test.

From what we are led to understand, many of those born and bred in this country would find it hard to answer some of the questions that are asked.

And finally, congratulations to puppy Alice. I bet she has never been bottom of the totem pole!