Support for Learning
Dozens of Young Nation-builders Programme (YNBP) scholarship overseas scholarship recipients came together last week, along with family members and government officials.
The informal event enabled the students to meet each other and form acquaintances, while meeting with the Premier the Hon. McKeeva Bush, OBE JP, and officials involved in the project.
Mr. Bush congratulated the youths as they "embark on an exciting journey of discovery and growth."
He said that while many Caymanians have undertaken tertiary studies overseas over the years - including through government scholarships - this new project generates additional options to meet the educational needs of young people.
"It offers more flexibility in assisting those who might not qualify for other scholarships, but who demonstrate a strong desire and ability to learn, and who show talent in their areas of interest," said Mr. Bush.
"I am particularly happy that there are a number of young boys seizing this opportunity. It is from people such as these that we will source the next generation of top civil servants and business administrators."
Mr. Bush added that the sum result of the YNBP effort should be a more productive and diverse society, and he emphasised that the concept of 'nation-building' is not just local.
"This pro-social tool has been a means of building advanced communities," he said. "Countries such as Germany and Japan, the modern economic miracles, have shared at least one common thread - a focus on developing their people.
"So I am more than happy that this project is going ahead. The overall nation building picture may seem grandiose to some, but this scholarship aspect, which benefits more than 30 young people, is certainly money well-spent!"
Areas of study range from medicine, music and tourism, to criminal justice and business. One teenager, who is using the YNBP funds to supplement his sports scholarship, said, "This is a great opportunity for me because I get to focus on achieving my dream."
Another student, enrolled in the University of Miami, aspires to be a doctor. "The YNBP covers half of my tuition," she said, "...while the remainder is paid by an education scholarship." She urges young people to take advantage of any opportunity to access higher learning.
One young lady, an education major attending Indian River State College in Florida, is focussed on elementary education/special needs.
"I've already worked in a primary school for more than a year," she said. "That opened my eyes to what I want to do; it's rewarding to assist with their educational needs and help build their futures. I really appreciate the YNBP assistance."
For further information contact: Lennon Christian