JIS News

The deadline for submitting applications for the PATH ‘Top Scholar Award’ competition has been extended to Friday, June 17.
In an interview with JIS News, Marcia Bolt, Manager of Public Education and Training for PATH at the Ministry of Labour and Social Security, said that the extension was to facilitate the submission of more applications, as the promotional activities for the competition had started later than anticipated.
“We started on May we decided to give our students an additional week to get their applications in,” Miss Bolt noted.
She said that the awards are intended to recognize beneficiaries of the PATH programme who have excelled in school. The winning student will walk away with $20,000, while the five runners-up will receive $4,000 each.
The main criteria for entry into the competition are that students should be beneficiaries of the PATH programme; they should be performing well in school; they should be in fourth or fifth form; they will be moving on to further studies in the next academic year; and they must be attending school regularly. Miss Bolt pointed out that while the requirement under the PATH programme was an 85 per cent attendance at school, the Ministry was taking it a step further by encouraging students to excel in their schoolwork.
“The PATH Top Scholar award is intended to highlight the achievements of our students,” she said.
“We are not required under the normal conditions of the programme to monitor students’ performance, but we know from our work in the field, that a number of them are doing very well and we just want to highlight what they are doing,” she added.
Students who are interested in the competition can collect the application forms at the Ministry’s Heroes Circle office in Kingston or they can call 922-2969 or the PATH toll free line at 1-888-7284 to request copies of the forms, which may then be faxed to them. Students who have already filled out their applications are urged to submit them to the Ministry’s nearest parish office.
The PATH ‘Top Scholar Award’, is just one of three categories of awards that will be given at the ceremony, which is expected to be held on June 30. The other two components are ‘The Spirit of PATH Award’ and the ‘Excellence in Service Delivery Award’.
Explaining the rationale for each award, Miss Bolt said that the former would recognize the most outstanding health centre and school from across the island, which have met most of the objectives of the programme. The winning school and health centre will be awarded a computer each.
The ‘Excellence in Service Delivery Award’ will be given to the most outstanding parish office for its excellent service delivery, both to the Ministry’s Head Office and to beneficiaries of the PATH programme. The office will be selected based on a number of criteria, such as the quality of its customer service, its ability to meet deadlines for submitting reports, and the ability of its Social Workers to meet the needs of the PATH beneficiaries.

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