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VOICES Bi-Monthly Magazine of the University of Technology, Jamaica |

February 2017



he University of Technology, Jamaica (UTech, Jamaica) and the

PetroCaribe Development Fund (PCDF) on Tuesday, February 14, 2017

formalized collaborative arrangements under which the University has

been contracted by the PCDF to implement a renewable energy training

pilot project at the Glenmuir High School in Clarendon.

The pilot project is for a period of four months and involves installation of

a solar energy system and other infrastructural modifications, as well as

a training component which will guide the teachers and students about

best practices in energy management and efficiency. UTech, Jamaica

led by expertise in its School of Engineering, was selected by the PCDF

to undertake the training component involving the training of teachers and

students on energy management and efficiency. The Project comes as

part of the thrust by the University to provide consultancy services from

the professional expertise of its staff to a growing number of clients in the

public and private sector in Jamaica and across the Caribbean.

Speaking at the contract signing held at UTech, Jamaica’s Papine campus,

Dr. Wesley Hughes, CEO, PCDF explained that “PetroCaribe has as part of

its mandate, the promotion and use of alternate sources of energy and a

reduction in the use of fossil fuel based energy in public institutions.” He

pointed out that one of the major challenges faced by Jamaica over many

decades continues to be the high cost of energy which stifles business

competitiveness and “makes households poorer.” He asserted that there

is significant unrealized potential for sustainable energy gains which can

accrue from structured initiatives in support of renewable energy and

training. It is in this context that he shared that the PCDF has designed a

project to increase energy efficiency in schools. “We believe that students

at the high school level are ideal candidates for the implementation of a

project of this nature. PCDF believes that the multiplier effects are far-

reaching and diverse,” Dr. Hughes said, adding that “it is anticipated that

these students will in turn demonstrate, skills and the best practices learnt

within the school, at home and later in the workplace.”

Dr. Hughes noted that Glenmuir High School was selected for the pilot

project “primarily because the school demonstrated the capacity consistent

with the project requirements.” He added that the intention is to replicate

the project in other high schools across Jamaica after the pilot is tested at


President of the University, Prof. Stephen Vasciannie, in welcoming the

partnership, said that “UTech, Jamaica welcomes the project as a perfect

fit with the University’s thrust “towards leveraging our expertise, knowledge

and use of technology and innovation to impact the country’s development,”

adding that “the collaboration has all the markers of the UTech, Jamaica

brand and our commitment to building the three pillars of teaching, research

and service.”

Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Computing, Dr. Nilza Aples

congratulated the Project team in the School of Engineering comprising

Dr. Noel Brown, Head, School of Engineering and Project Lead, Dr. Therese

Chambers, Lecturer/Project Training Specialist, Mr. Kirland Rowe, Lecturer/

Energy Manager, and Ms. Elecia Johnson, Administrator for the Project.

Pointing to UTech, Jamaica’s well established expertise in engineering

education and training, the Dean noted that the University has led a

number of similar energy training projects with other local and international

organisations and welcomed the continued opportunity to contribute to

Jamaica’s energy development.

Following the Glenmuir High School Pilot Project, the PetroCaribe

Development Fund intends to roll out the programme for renewable

energy use across many other schools in the country. In the Estimates

of Expenditure for the new financial year, 2017/18, the Government has

allocated $695 M for energy efficiency and energy conservation in the

public sector.


UTech, Jamaica signs Contract Agreement with PetroCaribe

Development Fund for Renewable Energy Training Project at

Glenmuir High School

Prof. Stephen Vasciannie, CD, (seated 3rd left) President, University of Technol-

ogy, Jamaica affixes his signature to a contract agreement with the PetroCaribe

Development Fund (PCDF) for the University to implement a renewable energy

training Project at Glenmuir High School, Clarendon. Participating in the contract

signing (seated from left) are Ms Shakiera Cowan, Client Relations Manager, PCDF,

Dr. Wesley Hughes, CEO, PCDF and Prof. Nilza Aples, Dean, Faculty of Engineering

and Computing, UTech, Jamaica. Standing from left are Miss Sheena Woodburn,

Research Assistant, PetroCaribe Development Fund, Dr. Therese Chambers,

Lecturer, School of Engineering and member of the Project team, Mr Kirkland

Rowe, Lecturer, School of Engineering and member of the Project team, Ms. Elecia

Johnson, Administrator for the Project, UTech, Jamaica, and Mr. Martin Henry,

Manager, Projects and Operations, School of Graduate Studies, Research and

Entrepreneurship, UTech, Jamaica.