JIS News

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  • Minister of Education, Hon. Rev. Ronald Thwaites, is assuring prospective tertiary-level entrants that the Student Loan Bureau (SLB) is adequately financed to fulfill its demands this year.
  • He said the SLB has been allocated between $ 4 billion and $5 billion to deal with the usually high number of applications by those hoping to undertake tertiary education.
  • The Minister also called on financial institutions to introduce policies and products that can be “game changers” in the funding of tertiary education.

Minister of Education, Hon. Rev. Ronald Thwaites, is assuring prospective tertiary-level entrants that the Student Loan Bureau (SLB) is adequately financed to fulfill its demands this year.

He said the SLB has been allocated between $ 4 billion and $5 billion to deal with the usually high number of applications by those hoping to undertake tertiary education.

Rev. Thwaites, who was speaking at the Sagicor Scholarship Awards ceremony held at the Pegasus Hotel on Thursday (Aug. 27), encouraged those students, who recently received their Caribbean Secondary Examination Certificate (CSEC) results to utilise the loan provisions of the SLB.

“With the announcement of the CSEC results recently, we found that more of our young people… with the least resources are in fact matriculating to university. We have a serious (responsibility) to ensure that no person gets left behind because they simply cannot afford it, even though their intellectual and social abilities warrant a place at a tertiary institution,” he said.

Rev. Thwaites said the Ministries of Finance and Education are collaborating to set up a students’ assistance bureau, to provide guidance for those embarking on tertiary education.

He said this would provide advice on the best opportunities for financing, as well as “the most appropriate courses that they might take given their aptitude and also to look at the prospects of employability beyond their tertiary education.”

The Minister also called on financial institutions to introduce policies and products that can be “game changers” in the funding of tertiary education.

Meanwhile, 34 students attending six tertiary-level institutions were presented with scholarships valued at $250,000 each.

 

The institutions are University of the West Indies, University of Technology, Northern Caribbean University, University College of the Caribbean, Mico University College and the Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts.

The scholarships are renewable annually once students maintain a grade point average of 3.0. Book grants valuing $50,000 were also given to 13 tertiary students.

Fourteen scholarships were presented to children of Sagicor stakeholders, who excelled in the 2015 Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT).

Sagicor also awarded scholarships to the top boy and girl in the Jamaica Teachers’ Association (JTA)/ Sagicor National Primary, All-Age and Junior High School’s Athletic Championships.

Minister Thwaites commended Sagicor for demonstrating a consistent and expanding level of corporate social responsibility.

“A number of companies, individuals and more groups from the Diaspora (as well as) alumni associations…are contributing to the welfare of our students. This is a powerful partnership, a sign emblematic of the truth, that Jamaica is recognising how crucial education is for national development and for personal achievement,” he said.