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Jamaican Professors Establish US$100,000 Scholarship Fund

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Jamaican Professors Establish US$100,000 Scholarship Fund

The UWI Regional Headquarters, Jamaica. Friday, January 22, 2021. — The University of the West Indies’ 2020 Global Giving Campaign continues to receive generous contributions of alumni, donors and corporate partners regionally and internationally. Although the campaign was officially targeted as a month-long drive last August, in the latest act of kindness, UWI alumna, Professor Pauline O. Lawrence and her husband Professor Carlton G. Davis, both Jamaican-born, have stepped up to establish a scholarship fund with US$100,000 to provide scholarships to current and future UWI students in need.

The Professor Pauline O. Lawrence and Professor Carlton G. Davis Scholarship Fund was instituted at the Faculty of Science and Technology (FST) at The UWI Mona Campus, from which Professor Lawrence received a BSc (Honours) degree in Zoology.  Professor Davis was a Ford Foundation International Research Scholar and later, Visiting Professor in the Department of Agricultural Economics at The UWI St. Augustine Campus, in Trinidad and Tobago. Their investment will support Jamaican students pursuing BSc degrees in Life Sciences through the Faculty and MSc degrees in Agricultural Entrepreneurship, Plant Production and Protection, and Biotechnology for up to three years.

Both Professors Davis and Lawrence have been active in various cultural and philanthropic organisations throughout their retirement.  Together they continue to advocate for increased undergraduate and postgraduate training of students in basic and applied science to enhance economic growth in the Caribbean.  They jointly stated, “We are gratified to be able to assist in supporting academically deserving but financially needy students seeking degrees in the Faculty of Science and Technology. We are impressed with the significant reorganisation and ambitious vision proposed and implemented for The UWI that have led to its international recognition and ranking.  The economic growth and development of Jamaica and the Caribbean region rest on science and technology and we are excited to partner even in a small way, with The UWI to help prepare our students to seize academic opportunities in order to meet the forthcoming economic challenges that will surely require scientific solutions.”

Expressing his gratitude for the generous gift, Vice-Chancellor of The UWI, Professor Sir Hilary Beckles noted, “It is especially encouraging that this edition of our annual Global Giving campaign—which marked its fifth, consecutive year—has rallied the highest number of personal donations ever recorded, through online pledges, named scholarships and endowments from benefactors such as Professor Pauline O. Lawrence and Professor Carlton G. Davis.”

Pro Vice-Chancellor and Principal at the Mona Campus, Professor Dale Webber stated, “The value of a UWI education lies in how well we prepare our students for the global village while encouraging them to remain grounded in their regional identity. We encourage our people to dream and give them the tools to accomplish those dreams by enabling them to access quality tertiary education. We have been doing so for 73 years, and we hope to continue to do that for at least another 73 years. The generous donations from our alumni like Professor Pauline Lawrence and Professor Carlton Davis are what will help us realise that dream so that many more of our people can continue to realise their dreams.”

Dean of the Faculty of Science and Technology, Professor Michael Taylor shared that 13 students at the undergraduate and postgraduate levels will benefit from the scholarship.

“The Faculty of Science and Technology welcomes this very significant and timely gift.  The interest, support and partnership from alumni of the Faculty speak volumes and is inspiration to ensure we continue to produce graduates who will excel in their fields.  The pandemic has also brought into sharp focus issues of food security, heightening the importance of courses such as those in agricultural entrepreneurship, and plant production and protection which this endowment will support. We are truly thankful to Professors Lawrence and Davis for their generosity,” Professor Taylor stated.

Also present at the ceremony was Danielle Mullings, FST Representative of the Mona Campus Guild of Students. As she extended gratitude to the donors, she noted, “Funding our education at the tertiary level is an expensive undertaking; in fact, it becomes a luxury for many of our students, in the context of the pandemic. This scholarship is a symbol of hope.”

The regional University appreciates the continued support of kind donors and investors interested in contributing gifts of all sizes through The UWI Global Giving website or via corporate or personal endowments. Persons seeking more information may also contact the Institutional Advancement Division in the Office of the Vice-Chancellor at 876-977-0052 or email giving@alumni.uwi.edu.

 

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Photo Captions

  Professor Pauline O. Lawrence and Professor Carlton G. Davis

  1. UWI Scholarship Fund donors, Professor Pauline O. Lawrence and Professor Carlton G. Davis.

Group Photo

  1. L-R: Elecia Myers, Resource Mobilisation Coordinator in the Dean's Office at The UWI Mona Faculty of Science and Technology; Minna Israel, Special Advisor to The UWI Vice-Chancellor; Professor Michael Taylor, Dean, Faculty of Science and Technology; Danielle Mullings, Faculty of Science and Technology Representative, Guild of Students; Professor Dale Webber, Pro Vice-Chancellor and Principal, The UWI Mona; Dr. Dwight Robinson, Head of the Department of Life Sciences – all pictured at the handing over ceremony for the Professor Pauline O. Lawrence and Professor Carlton G. Davis Scholarship Fund.

More about the Professors

Professor Pauline O. Lawrence

Professor Lawrence is a product of Jamaica’s Buff Bay Primary School, Buff Bay, Portland Parish and a graduate of Titchfield High School in Port Antonio, Portland Parish where she was awarded the Cambridge School Certificate (Senior Cambridge) and General Certificate of Education Advanced Level, and served as Head Girl (1964, Student Body President) prior to attending The UWI Mona Campus.  She later obtained the MSc and PhD in Entomology from the University of Florida (UF).  She was the first black faculty member hired in the Department of Zoology, UF, where she rose through the ranks to Full Professor.  She subsequently served as Professor of Physiology and Biochemistry in the Department of Entomology and Nematology where she continued her grant-funded research and teaching until her retirement in 2011 after thirty-five years at UF.  Professor Lawrence is a member of the Phi Beta Kappa academic honour society, Washington, DC and recipient of several awards including a Distinguished Faculty Award from the Florida Blue Key Honour Society, Gainesville, Florida (1998), National Science Foundation Career Advancement Award for Women, NSF, Washington, DC (1988-89), and Lifetime Achievement Award from the Girl Scouts of Gateway Council, Jacksonville, Florida (2019).  

Professor Carlton G. Davis

Professor Davis is a graduate of the Black River Primary School, St. Elizabeth and Manning’s School, Savanna-la-mar, Westmoreland, Jamaica where he was awarded the Cambridge School Certificate prior to successfully pursuing the BSc and MSc degrees in agricultural economics at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln, Nebraska, US.  Subsequently, he received the PhD in agricultural economics from Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan, US.  Professor Davis was one of the first three black faculty members to be hired by the University of Florida and after a distinguished career, rising through the ranks to Full Professor, he was further elevated to the rank of Distinguished Professor, the first black faculty member to be so honoured in the history of the University.  He has received numerous national and international awards and recognitions, including Outstanding Black Agricultural Economist from the American Agricultural Economics Association (1984), Lifetime Achievement Award from the Southern Agricultural Economics Association (1996), the George Washington Carver Public Service Hall of Fame Award from Tuskegee University (2005), and Outstanding Contribution Award from the Caribbean Food Crops Society (2008).

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About The UWI

For over 70 years The University of the West Indies (The UWI) has provided service and leadership to the Caribbean region and wider world. The UWI has evolved from a university college of London in Jamaica with 33 medical students in 1948 to an internationally respected, regional university with near 50,000 students and five campuses: Mona in Jamaica, St. Augustine in Trinidad and Tobago, Cave Hill in Barbados, Five Islands in Antigua and Barbuda and an Open Campus. As part of its robust globalization agenda, The UWI has established partnering centres with universities in North America, Latin America, Asia, Africa and Europe including the State University of New York (SUNY)-UWI Center for Leadership and Sustainable Development; the Canada-Caribbean Institute with Brock University; the Strategic Alliance for Hemispheric Development with Universidad de los Andes (UNIANDES); The UWI-China Institute of Information Technology, the University of Lagos (UNILAG)-UWI Institute of African and Diaspora Studies; the Institute for Global African Affairs with the University of Johannesburg (UJ); The UWI-University of Havana Centre for Sustainable Development; The UWI-Coventry Institute for Industry-Academic Partnership with the University of Coventry and the Glasgow-Caribbean Centre for Development Research with the University of Glasgow.

The UWI offers over 800 certificate, diploma, undergraduate and postgraduate degree options in Food & Agriculture, Engineering, Humanities & Education, Law, Medical Sciences, Science & Technology, Social Sciences and Sport. 

As the region’s premier research academy, The UWI’s foremost objective is driving the growth and development of the regional economy. The world’s most reputable ranking agency, Times Higher Education, has ranked The UWI among the top 600 universities in the world for 2019 and 2020, and the 40 best universities in Latin America and the Caribbean for 2018, 2019 and 2020. The UWI has been the only Caribbean-based university to make the prestigious lists.  For more, visit www.uwi.edu.

(Please note that the proper name of the university is The University of the West Indies, inclusive of the “The”, hence The UWI.)