Prof. the Hon. Errol Morrison, OJ (at podium), President, University of Technology, Jamaica (UTech) addressing the Graduating Class of 2012 (at right) at the University’s graduation ceremony held on Saturday, November 3 at the National Arena, New Kingston. The President urged graduands to use their skills in innovation and entrepreneurship to create new enterprises and businesses for their own job creation.
The National Arena in Kingston came alive on Saturday November 3, 2012 with the joy and excitement from the happy University of Technology, Jamaica (UTech) Graduating Class of 2012. Over 2,000 graduates were eligible to receive masters and undergraduate degrees, diplomas and certificates in a variety of disciplines.
Chancellor, the Most Hon. Edward Seaga, ON, PC, in his opening address highlighted the challenges of financing tertiary education in Jamaica. He pointed out that the rising popularity of the Student Revolving Loan Fund which was established in 1970 to assist students in the financing of their tertiary education has resulted in an increase in demand for loans which greatly exceed supply.
Lamenting the imbalance between demand and supply for tertiary level funding, Mr. Seaga noted that “a substantial number of hopeful students who are seeking a college education will be disappointed in the coming year.” The Students’ Loan Bureau is currently challenged in meeting the demand for loans, as it can only meet 25 per cent of the need for the upcoming year.
Mr. Seaga explained that in order to close the financing gap for the Revolving Student Loan, $3B is needed. He recommended that the money “be obtained by raising loan capital of $3billion to match an equity contribution of $1 billion of education tax money provided in an education tax fund.”
President, Professor the Hon. Errol Morrison, OJ in his opening address congratulated the successful graduands on completing their courses of study. Having achieved this accomplishment, Professor Morrison posed the question to the graduating class: “Now that you have attained your undergraduate and graduate degrees, what shall you do with it?”
Professor Morrison noted that whilst only approximately 10 per cent of the Jamaican population is privileged to enjoy a university education, the job market will not be able to absorb all graduates. He urged the graduands therefore, “to use your skills in innovation and entrepreneurship acquired at UTech to create new enterprises and business to generate income for yourselves and others.” He also encouraged the graduands to continue to invest in further education and lifelong learning on their path to wealth creation.
The President saluted the first cohort of graduates from the Master of Science in Health Administration; Bachelors of Industrial Engineering; Bachelors of Science in Computing and the Bachelors of Science in Dental Hygiene.
Valedictorian Mark Scott who obtained the Bachelor of Science in Accounting (Finance and Banking emphasized the importance of choice, imploring his fellow graduates to rise to the challenge of making the right choice to weed out corruption, social degradation and immorality.
Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce appointed first University Ambassador
Prof. the Hon. Errol Morrison, OJ, President, UTech congratulates Mrs. Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce on her appointment as first UTech Ambassador at the graduation ceremony held Saturday November 3, 2012 at the National Arena.
Olympian Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce who graduated with the Bachelor of Science in Child Health and Adolescent Development was during the ceremony appointed first UTech Ambassador. In presenting her with the award, President Morrison hailed her as “a young woman who represents the best of UTech, the best of Jamaica and the best in the World in the combination of academia, sport, philanthropy and community service.”
The distinction of University Ambassador is bestowed on individuals who have distinguished themselves by obtaining high levels of accomplishment and who possess high standards of integrity and character to positively reflect and enhance the reputation of the University.
The citation read by University Orator, Mrs. Pamela Kelly praised Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce as an ideal candidate who has satisfied the criteria for the appointment as University Ambassador and has demonstrated excellence nationally and globally; has demonstrated interest in the University and possess a high standard of integrity that positively reflects and enhances the reputation of the University.
University Ambassadors will serve as official representatives of the President/University at designated events for which they may be selected to attend, as well as University Advancement activities.
The Shelly-Ann Fraser Assessment Centre for Children
In addition to being named University Ambassador, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce was granted the honour of having the new assessment centre established in the School of Allied Health and Wellness named for her. The Shelly-Ann Fraser Assessment Centre for Children will serve to assess and manage the needs of children with exceptionalities. This includes children with special needs as well as children with specials gifts and talents.
The Dean of the College of Health Sciences, Associate Professor Dr Ellen Campbell-Grizzle, explained that Mrs. Fraser-Pryce “exemplifies the best attributes of a conscientious student, superb athlete and a remarkable human being.” Not only was Mrs. Fraser-Pryce able to win her double Olympic medals, but she did it while pursuing her degree in Child Health and Adolescent Development at the University.
Responding to her new appointment as UTech Ambassador for which she is now a proud alumna, Mrs. Fraser-Pryce exclaimed, “I definitely look forward to carrying the UTech flag high wherever I go because when I started the programme in 2008 I was told it wouldn't be possible….I thought I wasn’t supposed to dream, but here at UTech it is a family and I am truly honoured to be part of a family that truly cares about me so much... I am really grateful for being given the opportunity to join such a prestigious institution,” she said to rousing applause.
Corporate Communications Manager
University of Technology, Jamaica