Minister of Education and Human Resource Development, Ronald Jones (second from right), imparts words of advice to the 23 scholars. Also pictured from left is Deputy Chief Education Officer, Joy Adamson; Chief Education Officer, Laurie King; and Permanent Secretary, Cecile Humphrey. (A. Gaskin/BGIS)

The latest crop of National Development Scholarship (NDS) winners has been advised to go to their country of study focused and determined and as proud ambassadors of Barbados.

Minister of Education and Human Resource Development, Ronald Jones, offered this advice to the 23 recipients this morning during a meeting at the Ministry of Education’s Constitution Road headquarters.

Before a small gathering of recipients, education officials and parents, the Minister stated that out of a field of over 100 applicants, the 23 chosen were the largest block of NDS winners ever awarded at any one time. "What we go by is the quality of, one, what you first bring to the table, and then the quality of your expressions and then the quality of the needs of the country.?? This is not a gift, neither is this a rite.?? It is a need for the country which we are expressing through you," Minister Jones clarified.

Stating that they were expected to maintain a high standard wherever they went, Mr. Jones told the recipients that as they headed off to the United Kingdom, United States, Canada and even to Australia and Sweden, that although resources were limited, the Ministry of Education was still able to award the scholarships.

"Every year we put out there a set of disciplines, a set of programmes which are in fact important at that space of time, and those persons who have been selected … you will see why we have gone in the direction we have gone this year.

"We recognise that the creative industry is… the next area for major development.?? So many countries have gone ahead; Jamaica recognised it way back in the 60s and 70s that is why it has been able to produce so many cultural artistes across the world and when you look at the financial inflows into that country… a lot of the money that flows back into the economy is as a result of the sales and services arising out of the cultural products out of Jamaica.?? So, Barbados is somewhat behind in terms of the sale of its cultural product," the Minister lamented, while noting that our cultural talent was however of an "excellent quality".?? ??????????????

These scholarships have been granted to provide training in scarce specialist areas and in priority areas of the socio-economic development of the country.??

Areas of study range from Digital Strategy, Engineering for Sustainable Development, Creative Culture Entrepreneurship, Sports and Exercise, International Education to Entertainment Management.


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