Sun | Jun 4, 2023

Should I stay, or go?

Published:Monday | March 29, 2010 | 12:00 AM

University of Technology (UTech) students say while they would stay in Jamaica, if the country's economic climate improved so they could support themselves, migration is definitely an option.

Seven university students who are either finishing up or are one year away from completing their degree requirements contemplated leaving Jamaica and emigrating to other countries during a Gleaner forum at the university on Friday.

Faculty of Business and Management student Dane Nicholson said he would definitely leave Jamaica if salary standards did not improve.

"After your parents spend so much money to send you to university, it is unfair to go out there and work for less than what you're worth," he said.

Unable to repay loans

Nyron McLaughlin is in the sciences and sports faculty and one of his main concerns is not being able to make payments towards student loans.

McLaughlin said his monthly expenses include rent, which is over $20,000, and he expects to make less than $90,000 per month.

"People can't live on that," he said, shaking his head.

Karen Manning-Henry, Faculty of Education and Liberal Studies, is aware that her student loan grace period is coming to an end and she "should" start making monthly payments averaging $21,000 at the end of this year.

McLaughlin is looking into moving to Canada, where he said he would be able to work and send money to his siblings in Jamaica so they can go to school with money "the Government will not be able to provide".

However, there were a few of students balancing on should-they-or-should-they-not-go.

Dahlia Dwyer, of the Faculty of Business and Management, said she thinks she would live overseas temporarily because of her interest in investing in Jamaica.

"I want to contribute to Jamaica's growth ... whether through funding or with a Marcus Garvey drive."

Faculty of Education and Liberal Studies student Desmond McKenzie suggested the Government establish a bond through which Jamaica would receive remittances from overseas companies in need of skilled workers.

"Persons will be reluctant to say they're going to migrate," he said.