Fri | Dec 4, 2020

Holness donates $2.5 million to UTech for needy students

Published:Tuesday | October 20, 2020 | 3:43 PM
Prime Minister and Leader of the Jamaica Labour Party, Andrew Holness, presenting a cheque to Professor Colin Gyles, Acting President of the University of Technology, Jamaica, towards scholarships to support needy students. The presentation was made at the university’s Papine campus in St Andrew on October 20, 2020 – Contributed photo.

Prime Minister and Leader of the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP), Andrew Holness, today donated $2.5 million to the University of Technology, Jamaica (UTech) to assist students with the greatest financial need at this time.  

A statement from the university indicated that Holness presented acting university President, Professor Colin Gyles, with two cheques – one for $1.5 million from the JLP Education Fund and the other for $1 million to the institution from his Positive Jamaica Foundation.

Holness reportedly stated that he was moved to reach out to the university to make a contribution to assist students who are experiencing financial difficulties. 

“The difficulties revolved around their lack of ability to finance their education.  The COVID-19 times would have made it difficult for everyone but particularly for students.

“ ….What we try to do to balance that scale is to offer these scholarships to the universities.  So instead of the Jamaica Labour Party going to select who is in need; it would be better that this is done by the universities who could adjudge that, without any form of political consideration,” he said.

The scholarship to UTech is being offered for the second consecutive year by the Jamaica Labour Party Education Fund and the Positive Jamaica Foundation.

Gyles, in expressing gratitude for the donation, noted that the university continues to be mindful of the financial challenges faced by students and continues to seek ways of providing assistance through scholarships and grants, many of which are funded by the private sector. 

“Despite this assistance, many of our students still find it very difficult and so we are grateful for the kind assistance offered to our students,” he said. 

Gyles indicated that 24 final year students benefitted from the donation made in November of last year. 

He also advised that in “paying it forward” by helping others through volunteerism, all students have begun or are in the process of completing structured community service projects.

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