Minister of State in the Ministry of Education and Human Resource Development, Patrick Todd.

A Government Minister has underscored the importance of investing in education as a means of safeguarding the island’s future development.

"The Government of Barbados is cognisant of the fact that our people are our greatest resource.?? With this understanding, Rotary Club of Barbados West must be lauded for its vision, in recognising the necessity to contribute to one of the greatest needs of our country – to provide education for all," said Minister of State in the Ministry of Education and Human Resource Development, Patrick Todd.

He was addressing Rotary Club of Barbados West’s presentation of scholarships to first year University of the West Indies’ students Desiree Battleshield and Adrian Williams, at the Ministry’s Constitution Road, St. Michael, headquarters.

Ms. Battleshield, a former student of the Combermere School, is currently pursuing the prerequisite subjects of Physics and Mathematics to satisfy the matriculation requirements for the Land Survey and Land Management programme in the Department of Engineering, at the University of the West Indies St. Augustine Campus, Trinidad.?? Mr. Williams, a product of the St. Lucy Secondary School, is pursuing a Bachelor of Science Degree in Information Technology and Accounting.

He further stated: "Investing in education gives rise to greater national stability, social cohesion and sustainable national development."

In congratulating the recipients, Mr. Todd advised them to maintain their high level of academic excellence and to use their expertise to enhance Barbados’ development.

The Minister of State also congratulated Rotary Club of Barbados West for its commitment to the island’s education for the past nine years by awarding scholarships to the tune of $5,000 per annum to students, who, though academically gifted, were in need of financial assistance.

Chairman of the Scholarship Committee, Joseph Steinbok, pointed out that the award was a joint effort between the sponsors Rotary Club of Barbados West, Diamonds International and Sandy Lane Hotel.

He explained that the funds were raised during the annual golf tournament, through sponsorship of the teams by members of the business and offshore communities.

In outlining how the scholarship was awarded, Mr. Steinbok stressed: "This scholarship is not based solely on acceptance to a Caribbean University, but on need as well.?? What we [Rotary] are trying to do is to ensure that children from all backgrounds have the ability to achieve their dreams without being restricted by finances."

Marketing Manager with Diamonds International, Simone Ward, described the partnership with Rotary Club West as "fruitful." "For the last five years we have established with the Rotary West and our other partners Sandy Lane Hotel, the Scholarship Trust Fund which has been reaping rewards. I am glad that the two recipients have been able to benefit from the hard work which corporate Barbados has put in to maintain this relationship."

The students thanked the Rotary Club of Barbados West for their generosity and expressed the hope of owning their own businesses and giving back to the community at the end of their studies.

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