IN Celebration of The UWI’s 1st Class Honours Recipients
On Saturday October 11, graduands of The UWI Open Campus, St Lucia Site joined their 16 sister campuses in a formal Ceremony for the Presentation of Graduates, held at The Gaiety on Rodney Bay in St. Lucia. And what a grand occasion it was, replete with all the pomp and grandeur that such occasions warrant.
It is with great pride that The UWI Open Campus extends congratulations to all of our local graduates and wishes them every success in their future endeavours. This week we feature 1st Class Honours recipients and study mates, Eyan St.Helen and ChrisentiaCombie as they reminisce about their shared journey.
“I have always prided myself on being a focused and driven individual. These traits stood me in good stead studying in an online environment which requires self discipline and dedication.
My ultimate goal was to complete the programme successfully and that was reason enough to maintain my focus. It was always my intension to give of my best in my academic endeavours and while I did not follow a rigid structure, I always allotted some time every day to complete tasks relevant to my studies. Maintaining close friendships and interactions with other students in the online environment also facilitated that focus.
As expected, online studying meant less personal time spent with my family. However, there was a degree of flexibility in studying online which allowed me to meet and fulfil my other commitments most of the time. I would like to thank the Almighty for reminding me that I can do all things through him who strengthens me; my wife, Ivy Remy – St. Helen for her unfaltering support; and my friend and study mate ChrisentiaCombie who was also a pillar of strength and support.
The Open Campus affords students an excellent opportunity to develop themselves academically and professionally in a cost effective manner. The completion of my programme with the Open Campus has benefitted me immensely. I feel that my pedagogical arsenal as a teacher is more equipped. I certainly feel more self-assured as a teacher. The applications gleaned have made me mature cognitively and will definitely impact on my future teaching and instructional practices.
I certainly intend to continue to climb the academic ladder and am currently considering pursuing a Masters in English Education.”
Echoing the sentiments uttered by Eyan, Ms ChrisentiaCombie also lauded the convenience of being able to pursue an affordable level of education, while continuing to work.
“I kept focused by reminding myself of my motivators, said Ms Combie –“to get a degree before thirty and to increase my salary so that I could improve my standard of living.” Attaining first class honours was not a thought when I commenced the program. Successful completion was most present in my mind.
My success is due to support from everyone in my life. The stress of studying most impacted my daughter who sometimes could not be with Mommy. Everyone else kept in stride and was immensely supportive.
I plan to give credence to the old adage “eat, drink and be merry, for tomorrow we die” in order to celebrate my success. My family and supportive friends will join me in having a well-deserved drink to celebrate my success.
My gratitude is extended to my family both in St. Lucia and Canada, especially my sisters, Cheris who took care of me when I was pregnant and Shinaed who took care of my daughter when necessary. I would also like to thank my friends, especially the loyal members of Fab4 and RTA. My success would have been impossible without fellow student, Eyan, who helped me keep track of assignments, exams and any announcements and provided me with the complete package of study buddy and friend.
Open Campus is indeed beneficial to small countries like St. Lucia as it provides an opportunity to study while maintaining a source of income. The UWI Open Campus was also very competent. I particularly recall that the Campus enabled me to write an exam at a foreign university when I was forced to travel to Canada due to a medical emergency. As a result of the Campus’ academic ties with the University of Toronto, I was able to complete my programme within the three year period without major glitches. I would particularly like to thank Mrs Springer who ensured that the foreign arrangements went smoothly.
I am now more equipped to contribute to the development of Language and Literature in my territory. It is my hope that I can impress upon the students whom I teach as well as anyone whom I encounter in such forums, that Language is purposeful and that each language should be respected.”