The burden of hefty tuition costs has been lifted from of 43 tertiary-enrolled students, who were formally announced as the 2017 Carreras scholarship and bursary beneficiaries at an awards ceremony hosted in their honour last Tuesday evening at the Jamaica Pegasus hotel.
Whittled down from more than 400 submissions, the fortunate 43 students who have their sights set on becoming future medical practitioners, educators and cultural ambassadors, among other professional disciplines, were collectively awarded financial assistance that totalled $8.1 million.
Extending congratulations to the awardees, Carreras Managing Director Marcus Steele advised them that the company “chose to take a chance on you because we are confident that investing in your future, in partnership with your parents and teachers, will assist you in achieving your full potential”.
A candid Steele shared that he was a product of humble beginnings and grew up in the troubled inner city of Payne Land, fleeing with his family at the height of political unrest in the 1980s when violence become not only pervasive but worrisome, too. Positing that one’s origins did not dictate one’s destination, Steele said: “we know you have big dreams backed by big achievements but, unfortunately, lack big pockets. That’s where Carreras comes in and we are more than happy to help.”
Meanwhile, the ceremony’s keynote speaker, Minister of State in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information Floyd Green challenged the room of scholarship and bursary recipients to “have dreams of not only transforming the country but the world”.
Green said his administration championed higher education and as such, had actively sought to reduce loan interest rates at the Students’ Loan Bureau, lessening borrowing rates from 9.5 to 6 per cent while encouraging tertiary pursuits in the burgeoning careers of logistics, engineering, information communication technology and maritime, which all hold significant career growth promise for the next generation of grads.
- HOPE Scholarship recipients — the children of slain soldiers and policemen and women — Anieka Comi, Stacy-Ann Hyman, Oleisha Robinson and Mijanou Mitchell.
- HOPE Scholarship: to HEART Trust/NTA student Ajanae Bailey. Carreras awarded seven HOPE scholarships this year to the offspring of members of the Jamaica Defence Force, the Jamaica Constabulary Force and the Jamaica Federation of Corrections killed in the line of duty
- EMCVPA: Carreras scholarship recipients from the Edna Manley College for the Visual and Performing Arts Chadrick Barnes, Shannon Murray, Marlon Tomlinson and Ryan Scott
- UWI Masters: Carreras Postgraduate Scholarship recipient Kai-Yaneeke Tapper, who holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Entertainment and Cultural Enterprise Management and a minor in music from the University of the West Indies Mona, was awarded financial assistance valued at $1.8 million to complete her tertiary pursuits in cultural studies.
- SEEK Scholarships: University of the West Indies student Linda Bennett received the SEEK Scholarship.
- Radiography at UWI Twins Jamall and Jameel Stewart, both majoring in radiography at the University of the West Indies, Mona were awarded bursaries, compliments of Carreras, at last Tuesday’s awards ceremony.
In his keynote speech, Minister of State in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information Floyd Green noted his administration’s efforts toward reducing the interest rates of the Students’ Loan Bureau from 9.5 to 6 per cent.
First published in the Jamaica Observer Lifestyle Section and written by — Omar Tomlinson