UWI Collaborates With OAS to Deliver Citizenship Education Programme

Photo: Donald Delahaye Secretary General of the Organization of the American States (OAS), H.E Luis Almargo (left), and Principal of the University of the West Indies, Mona, Professor Archibald McDonald, shake hands at the official launch of the OAS-UWI Partnership Programme on Citizenship Education on November 2, at the Faculty of Law, Mona campus. The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the partnership was signed in June.

Story Highlights

  • A partnership between the Organization of American States (OAS) and the University of the West Indies (UWI), Mona, has strengthened the capacity of the institution to educate the youth about the value of governance to the Jamaican society.
  • In June, the OAS signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with UWI to provide support to a Citizenship Education programme, being done through the Department of Government.
  • The OAS is also partnering with the UWI to replicate the university’s Governance Society model throughout the Americas.

A partnership between the Organization of American States (OAS) and the University of the West Indies (UWI), Mona, has strengthened the capacity of the institution to educate the youth about the value of governance to the Jamaican society.

In June, the OAS signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with UWI to provide support to a Citizenship Education programme, being done through the Department of Government.

Through the programme, developed in 2013, students in the department engage high schools across the country to promote awareness around governance, and highlight issues such as the rule of law, accountability, transparency, human rights and effective and efficient Government.

Principal and Pro-Vice-Chancellor of UWI, Professor Archibald McDonald, bringing remarks at the official launch of the collaboration with the OAS, held on Monday (November 2) at the Faculty of Law on the campus, said the partnership will expose students to unique learning opportunities from an international perspective.

He said it will enable significant development of some of the most valued degree programmes in Government.

“This new partnership further supports our mandate to create a globally aware graduate that is capable of speaking with authority on issues that not only affect our national and regional communities, but also our international society,” he said.

Under the agreement, the OAS provides the Department of Government with free access to educational resources developed by the Inter-American Programme on Education for Democratic Values and Practices; free access to online courses, such as the ‘Evaluation of Programmes and Policies on Education for Democratic Citizenship’; and technical assistance through capacity strengthening workshops in citizenship education.

“This partnership will further provide our institution with an opportunity to advance the field of citizenship and democracy studies in higher education throughout the region and will certainly help diversify our programme offerings and institutional knowledge base in this area,” Prof. McDonald said.

He said the initiative highlights a continued commitment by UWI to become a tertiary education institution that will meet the demands of the modern-day student and the changing geopolitical climate of the international community.

The OAS is also partnering with the UWI to replicate the university’s Governance Society model throughout the Americas. The UWI will, in turn, incorporate the OAS’ key concepts on democracy and good governance into its Governance Society curriculum and manual.

Since the signing of the agreement, students from the Governance Society and high school teachers have benefitted from training under the OAS’ Peace Leaders Programme, a civic education initiative which attempts to bring peace-related material across the world.

Secretary General of the Organization of the American States (OAS), H.E Luis Almargo (left), and Dean of the Faculty of Law, University of the West Indies, Mona, Dr. Derick McKoy, share a moment following the official launch of a collaboration between the OAS and the UWI Department of Government for a Programme on Citizenship Education on Monday, November 2, at the Faculty of Law.

OAS Secretary General, H.E. Luis Almagro, said this partnership is representative of how the OAS General Secretariat works in collaboration with member states to build capacities to address key development challenges by jointly developing practical, adaptable models for different realities; models that immediately impact and benefit participants.

Education for democratic citizenship is a key component of quality and inclusive education that advocates equality between people,” he said.

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