$1.7m for special studies

luigimarshall, luigimarshall@nationnews.com

Added 17 August 2011

education022

This year’s National Development Scholarship winners will be pursuing studies in specialised areas that lack qualified personnel in Barbados. This is according to Minister of Education Ronald Jones who told reporters that the process of selecting the winners was “a highly competitive” one. His comments came yesterday at the ministry’s headquarters as he formally met and greeted the 11 winners. “A lot of the others would have also made it because they came in with good academic credentials and in good areas of need, but at the end of the day, we had to settle on only a certain number based on the availability of resources,” Jones said. “I believe in 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011, we would have processed approximately 45 persons for National Development Scholarships.” The winners, who range in ages from 27 to 39, were chosen from more than 100 applicants through an elimination process which included interviews. One person was granted a special award by the minister. And two people, who were awarded scholarships in 2010, will take up their scholarships this year to pursue studies in specialised areas in medicine. The scholarship winners and their areas of studies are: Paul Issacs – business intelligence, Sadio Harris – statistics, Jamilla Cobham – theatre management, Ramon Husein – disaster management, Marisha McClean – paediatric cardiology, Andrea Brathwaite – education policy and planning, Sharon Harris – language pathology, Trudy Rowe – gerontology, Lana Ashby – copyright law, Karen Proverbs – archives conservation, and Johnathan Noel – urology. The special awardee is Elon Cadogan who will be pursuing his studies in environment engineering in a university in Taiwan. The scholarship winners, some of whom will be taking up their studies next year, will pursue them in universities in the United States and Britain. Noting that Government remained committed to making education accessible to Barbadians, the minister reminded the scholars that taxpayers were the ones who continued to spend “quite large sums” of money on their schooling. He urged them to return to the island and contribute to its continued development. The scholarships will run for a minimum of one year and a maximum of four years. According to Jones, the total cost of the scholarships for this financial year “will run in the region of $1.7 million”. This, he said, would be counted as a new budget for the scholarship programme. The National Development Scholarship was established in 1971 to provide training in areas not covered within the University of the West Indies (UWI) and in areas which a specialised committee was set up to determine were needed for the development of the country. (MM)  

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