Jamaica and Guadeloupe Explore Opportunities for Co-Operation in Education


A mission from the French-speaking island of Guadeloupe recently met with senior officials from the Ministry of Education and Youth to discuss several education and training initiatives that will facilitate increased co-operation between the two islands.
Among the proposals put forward by the Mission of Opportunities for Cooperation in the field of Education and Training, was an exchange programme, where students of colleges and universities in Jamaica and Guadeloupe, could take advantage of opportunities to study and work in both countries.
Director of Cabinet for the President of the General Council, Dumirier Daniel, noted that although there are several constraints to an exchange with Jamaica, such as obtaining visas, transportation, and the language barrier, “we have to overcome these various challenges.”
“We have a very strong political realm to support this exchange,” he stated.
State Minister for Education and Youth, Senator Noel Monteith welcomed the programme of exchange as one that would help to overcome constraints and foster increased ties between the countries.
“I think I will have the approval of Minister Maxine Henry-Wilson, and the Prime Minister of Jamaica as well in pledging our support for these initiatives that you have mentioned,” he said.
He pointed to opportunities for the countries to exchange French and English teachers, while young athletes from the French-speaking country could take advantage of the training facilities available at G.C.
Senator Monteith said that the Ministry would also be happy to admit students from Guadeloupe to the island’s universities and vocational training centres, so that they could benefit from the national and regional certification offered by these institutions. The Guadeloupe team welcomed the proposals and invited the Ministry to send youth delegates to a Career and Study Opportunities Symposium slated to be held in the island in November. They also invited Jamaican university students to attend a University Day in the French-speaking island.
Other discussions centered around possible ways that both countries could overcome cultural and trade barriers.
The Guadeloupe delegation put forward ideas such as students from the French-speaking island obtaining internship opportunities in local corporations, and proposed that Jamaican companies export products to Guadeloupe and Martinique, thus presenting an incentive for Jamaican professionals to learn French.
The Guadeloupe delegation, which included elected General Councillors, Ferdy Louisy and Paul Naprix; Council representative, Marcel Sigiscar and five students, arrived in Kingston June 5. They have visited the University of the West Indies, University of Technology and Edna Manley College of the Visual Arts.
The group also visited the French Embassy and attended the Choices Career Expo and Caribbean Fashion Week. A number of Jamaican students are also visiting Guadeloupe in a similar exchange activity, Senator Monteith disclosed.

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