10 St Mary students awarded scholarships

August 30, 2022

Ten outstanding students were awarded scholarships during the launch of the St Mary Education Trust (SMET) Scholarship Awards on Friday at the Jamaica Producers Visitors centre.

The students, some of whom are part of the scholarship-continuity programme, were elated to receive the much-needed assistance, especially with the reality of the economic hardships brought about by COVID-19.

Chairman of the SMET, Elizabeth Phillips, pointed out that the cost of tertiary education has increased significantly, which creates difficulty on the pocket of some parents who find it increasingly hard to cope with the tough economic conditions.

“I’m happy to announce today to the scholars that your award has been increased from $250,000 $300,000, starting this year,” said Phillips.

“I am so grateful for the main sponsor, the Jamaica Producers Group, who bought into the idea of developing a trust that would oversee SAP (Sidney A. Phillips) and other scholarships that would benefit St Mary primarily, and Jamaica in general. And now we celebrate the official launch of the St Mary Education Trust. Today SMET is awarding 10 scholarships at a total value of $3 million. I would like to thank our donors big and small for their contribution,” she added.

Among the recipients is Shandre Hinds, a third-year student of agricultural production and food-systems management at the College of Agriculture, Science, and Education in Portland. She received the Ernest Johnston Memorial Bursary valued at $300,000 granted for one year.

Five students – Kwaine Anderson, Cornelius Ross, Nicalia Shattock, Xandrea Roach, along with Hinds – are benefitting under the continuity scholarship programme. Additionally, five new students – Drew Davis, Dealia Dunbar, Tracy Ann Walker, Lascelles Williams, and Sanjae Dunn – were awarded scholarship.

Guest speaker Christopher Ramdon, who is the chief information officer at Wisynco, urged the awardees to continue to display and produce high levels of professionalism in their quest for education while hailing them for their brilliance in the classroom.

“Awardees, you are about to be handed a baton … a baton to which you are well prepared through education, both formally and informally. Make no mistake, you are brighter than we ever could be. Your imaginations are broader. Your future is limitless. But never underestimate your challenges,” he said.

“You are surrounded in your space by cheerleaders; people who believe in you, people who are not just providing finances, but through blood, sweat, and tears are your cheerleaders. We are there if you need advice. The impact of these scholarships is far and wide, and it serves to develop us as a nation,” he added.

Earlier, Charles Johnson, chairman of the Jamaica Producers Group, stated that it was a vision on the part of Sydney A. Phillips and his belief in education that has paved the way for students in St Mary to be now benefiting from grants that will assist them greatly in their educational prospects.

And Chief Executive Officer of Jamaica Producers Group Jeffrey Hall stated that it was well thought out and forward thinking on the part of all the parties involved, who are now assisting students that have performed and continue to perform remarkably in their various disciplines in education.

The Sydney A. Phillips Scholarship was established in 1994 in honour of Phillips, who was retiring as custos of St Mary.

Jamaica Gleaner at https://bit.ly/3TXtiPU