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The University of Technology (UTech) will be establishing a campus at Ballards Valley in St. Mary.To be named the Carlton J. Walter Campus, it will be built on 20 acres of land donated by Mr. Walter.
The agreement for the establishment of the campus was signed at the Ballards Valley Estates on June 8. In attendance were Minister of Education and Youth, Maxine Henry-Wilson; Custos of St. Mary, A.A. ‘Bobby’ Pottinger; Mayor of Port Maria, Councillor Robert Montague; ProVice Chancellor of the University of Technology, Dr. Blossom O’Meally-Nelson; and President of UTech, Dr. Errol Morrison.
Signing on behalf of the University was Dr. Morrison, while Mr. Walter signed on behalf of the Ballards Valley Estates.
In his address, Mr. Walter said his decision to donate the land for the campus came as a result of encouragement he received from his daughter, and to realise his dream of witnessing the establishment of a tertiary institution in St. Mary to train the people of the parish in the skills needed to stimulate social and economic development.
Mr. Walter said he was not only confident that the institution would fulfil the role it is expected to play in St. Mary, but it would also be a catalyst for the development of the wider Jamaican society.
Delivering the keynote address, Mrs. Henry Wilson expressed gratitude to Mr. Walter for his kind gesture and encouraged other Jamaicans to make meaningful contribution to the education system, to do likewise.
She noted that there was a high level of correlation between endowments and other contributions received by tertiary institutions worldwide and the quality of education and training they delivered, adding that the initiative taken by the Walter family to donate the land for the building of the campus was an indication of the confidence they have in Jamaica and its people.
The Minister said the education system must enable the people to acquire the knowledge and the skills necessary to achieve nation building, rather than just making the citizens satisfied with copying what other people did in their countries.
She explained that the challenge facing universities and other training institutions around the world was the need for them to use technology to develop knowledge, and produce information for the advancement of society.
Expressing confidence that UTech would use the campus to promote growth and development in St. Mary, she exhorted the university to use the donation by the Walter family to continue to give the best education to Jamaicans.