Fifty Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) students from three tertiary institutions have been awarded scholarships valued at just over $26.6 million by the liquefied natural gas company New Fortress Energy.
The students hail from the University of the West Indies (UWI), Mona, the University of Technology (UTech) and the Caribbean Maritime Institute (CMU).
The scholarships were presented at a ceremony held at the UWI on December 1.
Minister of Education, Youth and Information, Hon. Fayval Williams, in her address, said the Ministry would continue to encourage the integration of technology at all academic levels.
“We welcome this important support for education in general, but STEM education, in particular. We have been making Jamaicans more aware of what it is. The national curriculum that we have in our primary schools through high school is STEM-based, and I’m happy to see that at the tertiary level, you are pushing this,” she said.
In the meantime, Principal of UWI, Mona, Professor Dale Webber, argued that investing in the STEM fields forms part of the university’s mission to inform and increase Caribbean development.
“Several decades ago, we decided we would invest in STEM, and we’ve continued to do so, especially as we recognise the need for us to grow as a country and as a region. The human resource to support this is important, and you, the students, are the human resource to make this happen. We have [also] found that partnerships with our public and private-sector entities make all the difference,” he said.
Since 2016, New Fortress Energy has awarded more than $65 million in tertiary scholarships. More than 3,700 primary and high schools benefited from financial aid, bursaries, tablets, laptops and school supplies.