It is a time of changing global alliances and major shifts in international politics, trade and economic agreements, from Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union, to the United States’ withdrawal from both the Trans-Pacific and Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnerships.
As Small Developing States, our countries are particularly vulnerable to these shifts. These changes provide an opportunity for the Caribbean to strengthen our regional political and economic union, as well as to deepen trade, economic and cultural connections with South America, the Caribbean Diaspora, as well as the African, Asian and Pacific states.
The UWI has become increasingly global in its outlook and sphere of operations. We continue to build expertise in fields such as the marine sciences, creative and cultural industries, agro-innovation, sport, and renewable energy, in order to become a centre of excellence in these areas, for the world. At the same time, we are connecting to international universities and industry partners in Latin America, North America, Africa, Europe and Asia, to access technology, expertise and resources to best meet the region’s needs.
UWI & NORTH AMERICA
SUNY-UWI Center for Leadership and Sustainable Development
Officially launched in September 2016, the SUNY-UWI Center for Leadership and Sustainable Development located at the SUNY Global Center in New York, provides a focal point for members of the Caribbean diaspora to engage with The UWI, including artists, academics, business people, and leaders in different fields. It is governed by an advisory board guided by Executive Director Elizabeth Thompson.
In a historic venture into the global market, The UWI partnered with the State University of New York (SUNY) to establish the SUNY-UWI Center for Leadership and Sustainable Development. At the launch event, (L-R) SUNY Empire State College President Merodie A. Hancock; Pro Vice-Chancellor and Principal of The UWI Open Campus, Dr Luz Longsworth; SUNY Board of Trustees Chairman, H. Carl McCall; Vice- Chancellor, Professor Sir Hilary Beckles; SUNY Provost and Executive Vice-Chancellor, Alexander N. Cartwright; and UWI Pro Vice-Chancellor for Global Affairs, Ambassador Richard Bernal.
UWI & LATIN AMERICA
The UWI has become a member of the Unión de Universidades de América Latina y el Caribe (UDUAL), an organization founded in 1949 to affirm and deepen relationships among Latin American universities and organizations such as the United Nations and Organization of American States (OAS). UDUAL also helps facilitate the exchange of faculty, students, researchers and alumni among its member universities, along with publications and other research and teaching materials.
Teaching English as a Second Language
Gillian M.S. Bristol, former Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Grenada to the United States of America, replaced Mrs Annette Insanally as Director of The University of the West Indies’ Latin American Caribbean Centre (LACC), with effect from August 1, 2016. A university-wide initiative, the LACC develops programmes to facilitate closer integration and cultural and academic exchange between agencies in Latin America, the Caribbean and Europe. As head of the LACC, and part of the newly established Office for Global Affairs, Ambassador Bristol is leading a working group on the harmonization of UWI’s English as a Second Language programme under The One UWI philosophy.
UWI & Africa
Development Bridge between Caribbean and Africa
The UWI aims to continue and extend the links between the Caribbean and Africa. In 2017, The University will activate a partnership with South Africa’s University of Johannesburg. The UWI-Johannesburg Institute for Global African Affairs is intended to be the development bridge between the Caribbean and Africa. It will be a co-owned and managed institute and will operate within the two universities. It will conduct joint research, teaching, and public advocacy around the many issues related to sustainable economic and social development. The Institute proposes to deliver, in the next academic year, a joint master’s degree in Global African Affairs that focuses on trade, diplomacy, economic development, cultural industries, and areas of growth for 21st century Africa and the Caribbean.
UWI & The UK
Oxford Vice-Chancellor Helps Launch New UWI Scholarship
Professor Louise Richardson, the first female Vice-Chancellor of Oxford University, delivered a keynote address at the launch of the McIntyre/Nettleford Scholarship in June 2016. The scholarship fund, for high-achieving youth from disenfranchised backgrounds, honours two of The UWI’s former Vice-Chancellors, Sir Alister McIntyre and the late Professor Rex Nettleford. Both men are among a list of distinguished Caribbean nationals who graduated from Oxford University. The event was attended by several Rhodes Scholars and other alumni of Oxford University, including Ms. Mariame Robinson, President and CEO of First Global Bank, which sponsored the event.
A Special Convocation for the Conferment of the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Laws on Professor Louise M. Richardson, Vice-Chancellor, University of Oxford at the Mona Campus
The British Foundation for The University of the West Indies (BFUWI)
The BFUWI (http://thebfuwi.org/), in collaboration with Caribbean Diaspora for Science, Technology and Innovation (CADSTI) and Future Think, launched a STEM coaching club for Caribbean students in the UK preparing for GCSE examinations. The Foundation also organized a Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) seminar for students at Imperial College, academic home of Dr. Mark Richards (BFUWI trustee), in conjunction with Barbadian Professor Cardinal Warde of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), head of the Caribbean Science Foundation and CADSTI in London. These initiatives were part of the BFUWI’s efforts to encourage students in the Caribbean diaspora in the UK to excel in and pursue advanced study in STEM fields—a critical aspect of the global knowledge economy and an important area for growth in the Caribbean and the developing world.
UWI & Asia
Sophia University (Japan) Collaboration
Following on a Memorandum of Understanding that was signed in early 2015, with Sophia University in Tokyo, one of the top private universities in Japan, to facilitate faculty/student exchanges, joint research, conferences, workshops and international training programmes between the two universities, eight UWI Business and Technology students representing each of The UWI’s four campuses, spent January 2016 in Japan on an exchange programme funded by the Japan-based Association for Promotion of International Cooperation (APIC).
30 DAYS IN TOKYO – Eight UWI students recount their experiences as part of a one-month exchange programme in Japan. Read more in this Pelican article.
UWI-China Institute of Information Technology
Global Institute of Software Technology (GIST) to establish The UWI-China Institute of Information Technology. In September 2016, the Institute admitted its first cohort of students to the co-designed BSc Software Engineering programme (http://www.uwi.edu/softwareengineering/).
The Suzhou Industrial Park (SIP), located in Suzhou, China.
UWI and SUNY – In a historic venture into the global market, The UWI partnered with the State University of New York (SUNY) to establish the SUNY-UWI Center for Leadership and Sustainable Development.