Financial assistance opportunities for students pursuing higher education can now be accessed in one location, with the publication of Jamaica’s first National Scholarship Digest.
With this publication, Next Move Jamaica (NMJ) has made the process easier for aspiring or returning students searching for the right scholarship, to study locally or overseas.
The Digest provides a comprehensive listing of scholarships for undergraduate and graduate study; certain fields and disciplines, including law, medicine, mass communication and engineering, as well as tertiary institutions located in Jamaica and other countries, such as China and Australia.
It also provides a guide for students to understand the application process, how to navigate the 4,200 listed scholarships valued in excess of $9 billion, and access to information on honing interviewing skills, as well as where, how and when to apply.
Speaking at the launch of the publication recently, President and Chief Executive Officer, NMJ, Christopher Grant, says the digest offers alternative means of tuition financing, adding that it has been published in hard copy as the conceptualisers realised that not everyone has internet access.
“What could be more helpful than a one-stop resource where students, parents, educators and scholarship providers could all go and access the tools necessary to make education a reality?” he says.
Mr. Grant says the publication will create awareness, while bringing on board more sponsors and donors, so that students can continue to benefit and achieve their goals.
“We are so excited about the promise of the digest and its contents – from the listed scholarships to the advice on how to write a successful scholarship essay. To the students out there, this is the first of many efforts to get the tool you need to succeed; to the parents out there, this is the first of many efforts to assist you and the children in improving your lives and social outcomes,” he argues.
He informs that plans are already in the pipeline for the publication of the second issue, which will be published in April 2013. “This is a fulltime commitment and we are constantly seeking and searching for new information, new scholarships and new opportunities. Right now, we are working on several projects that include new scholarships, internships and permanent career placement for our students and adult members,” he adds.
In welcoming the publication of the Scholarship Digest, Minister of Education, Rev. the Hon. Ronald Thwaites, notes that it will enable more students facing economic challenges to identify funding for higher education.
“We are faced with many students who are capable and able to matriculate into university, but they can’t do so because of economic circumstances. We have some who are in danger of being deregistered just before final exams, because they can’t make the payments and they didn’t know of scholarships,” he says.
The Minister commended the NMJ on its initiative and General Accident Insurance Company for sponsoring the publication.
With the assistance of the Ministry of Education, limited free copies of the digest will be distributed to all secondary and tertiary institutions islandwide. Copies can also be purchased for $1,500 in pharmacies and bookstores across the island.
For his part, Chairman of General Accident, P.B Scott, says education is the cornerstone of any nation. “For Jamaica to develop and grow, education has to be at the forefront of the Government,” he notes, adding that the company has, over the years, provided support in this area.
Highlighting the publication’s importance, he says it will bring a lot of value. “The reality is, there are many scholarships out there and unless people know about them and unless there is a way to deliver those scholarships to them, a lot of opportunities will be missed,” he notes.
For additional information, persons may also visit: www.nextmoveja.com for financial aid news as well as information on prospective internships.
Next Move Jamaica is an online resource offering innovative solutions for scholarship, grant, university and college searches. Their goal is to provide all students, whether they are high school, college, university or a mature student, access to the resources necessary for educational and professional success.
Their mission is to promote education through the development and publication of the most comprehensive database of financial aid information; and by providing students and parents with practical resources when making education, career, and life decisions.
By Chris Patterson, JIS Reporter