UPDATED: First batch of constables pass out from university as part of JCF programme
Two hundred and ninety-three constables who were trained at the University of the West Indies (UWI), Mona Campus, participated in the passing-out parade and the awards ceremony held yesterday at the National Police College of Jamaica, located in Twickenham Park, St Catherine.
The Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) noted in a press release that this was the first batch of new constables to graduate from the college as motorcyclists, pedal cyclists, or motor vehicle drivers.
In the keynote address, Rudyard Spencer, minister of state in the Ministry of National Security, told the graduates that their "recruitment is a part of the Government's efforts to increase the police-to-population ratio in order to enhance security services in the country."
The valedictorians, Constable Jahvarn Brown and Constable Kenecia Morris, spoke briefly on behalf of the graduating batch. "We propose to be gatekeepers, safeguarding lives and property. We are dedicating ourselves to the Jamaica Constabulary Force and Jamaica at large to serve, protect, and to reassure," said Brown.
Morris shared what the graduates gained through the arts of field craft. "Field craft taught us many things. More than anything, [it taught] us [how] to adapt ... . We also learned the dangers of our current profession and how to deal with them. It also developed our perseverance, patience, and willpower," she disclosed.
The JCF pointed out that Batch 117 was the first cohort to train and graduate from the UWI, Mona Campus. The partnership with the JCF and UWI, Mona, was not solely for the training of recruits. Through the Mona School of Engineering, three members of the JCF were offered computer engineering scholarships.
In delivering remarks, UWI Registrar Dr Camille Bell-Hutchinson welcomed the partnership among the university, the Ministry of National Security and the JCF.
"I think we have have learned many lessons from this partnership, and we do hope that you, the first cohort benefited from your time at UWI, Mona," she told the graduates.
(EDITOR'S NOTE: A previous headline attached to this article might have given the impression that the constables were trained by The University of the West Indies. While the UWI did not carry out training, its facilities were utilised.)