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2020 UWIAA NYC Chapter Pelican Awardee

2020 UWIAA NYC Chapter Pelican Awardee

Photo Credit: Margo Jordan.   (L-R) H.E. Pennelope Beckles - 2019 Pelican Awardee, Celia Davidson Francis -  Director of Alumni Relations – UWI, Dr Gerald White Davis – Co-Chair UWIAA New York Chapter, Dr Godfrey Gibbison - 2020 Pelican Awardees, Mr Chris

Dr. Godfrey A. Gibbison - Phd, MSc, BSc; was awarded the UWIAA New York Chapter’s 2020 Pelican Award at the American Foundation for UWI Gala on February 19, 2020 at The Pierre Hotel in Manhattan New York. Dr. Gibbison hails from the farming community of Contrivance in the parish of Manchester, Jamaica. He is the last of seven children who were raised primarily by the matriarch of the family after his father passed.

His mother supported the family as a subsistence farmer. He attended Knox College where his performance in his final exams earned him a scholarship from the Lions Club of Mandeville to attend Manchester High School for sixth form. Having completed his A levels he earned the Jamaica Flour Mills Scholarship to attend The UWI Mona Campus where he read for a degree in Economics, graduating with honours.

Following the completion of his undergraduate studies, Godfrey tutored in the Department of Economics at UWI Mona and was lecturer and the supervisor for the evening and part-time programmes at the University of Technology’s Commerce Department. He then proceeded on a Fulbright Scholarship to Iowa State University, Ames where he attained the Master of Science in Agricultural Economics. He then pursued the Doctor of Philosophy in Economics at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech). Godfrey then taught briefly at the Radford University and Virginia Tech, Blacksburg both in Virginia; and Centre College in Danville Kentucky. This prior to his returning to Jamaica in 2000, where he taught at The UWI, Mona Campus as lecturer in the Department of Economics. It was during his tenure at The UWI that he began his engagement (2001) with the Government of Jamaica and the World Bank in establishing the evaluation mechanism utilised by the Programme of Advancement Through Health and Education (PATH), a social intervention programme designed to break the intergenerational issues of poverty. His work in poverty alleviation in the Caribbean has formed the basis of a number of his research projects.

In 2002 Godfrey transitioned to Georgia Southern University, as Assistant Professor in the School of Economic Development. He subsequently held the posts of Assurance Learning Coordinator in the College of Business, Associate Professor and finally Director of the School of Economic Development. In 2012 he was recruited as the Dean of College of Charleston North Campus and has subsequently taken on the roles of Dean, School of Professional Studies, of which he is the founding dean, and Interim Dean, Graduate School, University of Charleston at the College of Charleston.

At the College of Charleston, Gibbison has worked to strategically position the college to serve the growing number of Americans who seek to complete a bachelor’s degree as a working adult. He is responsible for the creation of the first online undergraduate program at College of Charleston and for substantial policy changes to improve educational access for active duty military and student veterans. He has also served on the Board of the YMCA of Greater Charleston, serves on the Ingevity Community Advisory Board and the Charleston Metro Chamber Education Cabinet. He is a Board member of the Palmetto Goodwill Excel Centre, which seeks to establish high schools for adults across South Carolina. Godfrey believes in fitness as a way of life. He credits this to the approximately eleven miles he had to walk to and from Knox College daily, an experience he looks back with pride having never missed a day of school unless due to illness or weather.Godfrey is married to his partner of 13 years, David.

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