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Earning potential of young Bajans at risk


Earning potential of young Bajans at risk

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I was reading the MIDWEEK NATION and happened across at least two relatively high-level job vacancy advertisements.

I scanned the requirements set out in the advertisements and immediately noticed that in each case the first requirement mentioned was a bachelor’s degree in the relevant discipline. 

As a proud Barbadian who was fortunate to benefit from free tertiary education at the Cave Hill Campus of the University of the West Indies (UWI), I am concerned. While I fully appreciate that free tertiary education for all Barbadians was a significant financial outlay for the Government of Barbados, I cannot help but feel that it was a sacrifice that we needed and continue to need to make for the country as a whole.

Free tertiary education was a powerful equalising factor in Barbados which ensured that all students, who were interested, were able to achieve the goal of obtaining a university education regardless of their circumstances. 

Our most valuable resource continues to be our people and when we limit their ability to reach their potential, are we not limiting the growth of the nation as a whole?

More importantly, when a significant proportion of Barbadians can no longer afford to pay the cost of their own or their children’s course of study at the University of the West Indies, how will the current and coming generations of Barbadians successfully compete in the local, regional and international job market when the standards and requirements remain as high as they currently are?