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Approximately 100 students of the Montego Bay Community College’s Development and Outreach Department, graduated on July 12 after completing 12 weeks of training in a variety of competencies, aimed at empowering them for employment.
The first graduation exercise of the outreach programme took place at the college campus in Montego Bay, with graduates, who are mainly from the Bogue Hill, Ramble Hill, New Ramble and Wales Pond communities of St. James, receiving certificates in house keeping, entrepreneurship, personal development and basic English and Mathematics.
Principal of the institution, Dr. Angela Samuels pointed out that the ceremony brought to climax, a successful programme which could be attributed to teachers of the college voluntarily undertaking to provide education and training for adults who “had set their sights on being successful”.
“This graduation exercise marks another phase of your life-long learning, so I challenge you all to continue learning for the rest of your lives,” she charged the graduates.
In his address, Mayor of Montego Bay, Councillor Noel Donaldson made a call for more value to be placed on education and work, which would empower individuals to “be the masters of their own destiny”.
“Although we are having some difficult times in Jamaica, there are always great opportunities, but you will never be able to grasp those opportunities unless you are prepared, and education is the best preparation you can have in order to take hold of such,” he said. “I therefore commend and congratulate the Principal and academic staff of the Montego Bay Community College for initiating this worthwhile programme of reaching out to the communities in this way, because I am convinced that you build a society by building communities and you build a community through enriching the lives and creating opportunities for the individuals in that community,” the Mayor added.
He urged the graduates to be shining examples of excellence in their communities, and committed the St. James Parish Council to assisting with the programme, which was “critical to the development of the city of Montego Bay and the country at large”.