Student receives engineering scholarship from JPS Foundation
Eighteen-year-old Shemour Martin of Paradise Gardens is about to embark on a life-changing journey as a first-generation university student having received the JPS Foundation’s new engineering scholarship.
The first in his family, and one of very few from his community, Shemour is about to begin his studies at the University of Technology in electrical engineering, with his sights set firmly on a brighter future for Jamaica’s energy sector and a new and improved jump-start for Jamaica’s aviation industry all while being focused, at the core, on providing a level of positivity, inspiration, and hope for his generation and those to come.
Born and raised in an often extremely volatile inner-city area, Paradise Gardens, (also known as Southside), Shemour has always been passionate about not allowing his dreams to be shattered by fear or circumstances. “My dedication and determination stemmed mainly from my parents, who’ve always led by example and encouraged me to work towards greatness and always be the best person I can be. Being the first one in my family to yield good CSEC scores, and then receiving national and regional placements, I was expected to make a change in my family’s lineage,” Shemour shared. “My family has always done everything they can to support me, and, in turn, I’ve made every effort to do my part as well.”
Despite the many challenges posed by violence, poverty, and negative influences, Shemour’s drive and determination led him to excel in all of his various endeavours. A well-rounded St George’s old boy, Shemour was actively involved in extracurriculars such as Tae-Kwon-Do, track and field, robotics, and community service while still managing to balance his academics. Given the weight of university financially, Shemour also sought to equip himself with a trade from early on, enrolling himself in HEART Trust NTAs night school, while attending St George’s, to acquire skills in welding. “Shoot for the moon! Even if you miss your mark, you’ll land among the stars,” Shemour quoted a mantra that has propelled him to always strive for greatness.
In this, his final year of high school and first year of university, in the midst of the ongoing pandemic, Shemour’s family has struggled to make ends meet, but having received this scholarship, he expressed his immense gratitude to the JPS Foundation and his relief knowing that he has made his family proud and eased the financial burden. He sees this as the first step to fulfilling his dreams and inspiring those around him to do the same.
Immediately following his undergraduate degree, Shemour hopes to work with the Jamaica Public Service to develop his electrical engineering skills and to find innovative solutions to enable Jamaica to achieve a higher level of energy efficiency. His ultimate goal, though? To revamp and jump-start Jamaica’s aviation sector as he aims for his electrical engineering studies to better equip him to become an aircraft maintenance engineer. “Growing up in my community, I’ve seen youths who have big dreams, but because of lack of resources and strong foundations and support systems, they resort to violence, leading them down a pat further and further away from realising their full potential,” Shemour said. “I want to leave a legacy lasting longer than my time that would serve as a reminder that regardless of circumstance, we have the ability to exploit our potential and execute our dreams. I want to become an inspiration to those around me and those who come after me.”