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Dr. Hardat Sukhdeo Scholarship Awarded

Dr. Hardat Sukhdeo Scholarship Awarded

The UWI Medical Alumni Association Central Florida Chapter has awarded the 2021 Hardat Sukhdeo scholarship, which has been awarded since 2018 to honor the outstanding 1962 UWI medical graduate who had a distinguished Psychiatric career. It is worth US$1,500.00.

Applicants had to write an essay on the topic:  “The perception, need and role of Psychiatrists in Jamaica", most of which were very good and some excellent. 

All the applicants had significant financial need, some greater than others and the Selection Committee had great difficulty. After considerable deliberation, the following awards were made:

The 2021 Hardat Sukhdeo Scholarship of USD 1,500 awarded to                        :  Kabrina Martin

Central Florida Chapter Subsidiary Scholarship of USD 750 awarded to              :  Janique McKnight

Central Florida Chapter Subsidiary Scholarship of USD 750 awarded to              :  Monique Smith

Yvette Boodhoo PhD  Personal Subsidiary Scholarship of USD 750 awarded to  :  Jerome Gentles

Selection Committee Members :

Dr. Victor Boodhoo : Family Physician/Geriatrician.

Dr. Lesley-Ann Bernard-Pantin : Psychiatrist.

Dr. Yvette Boodhoo : Guidance Counselor.


Dr. Hardat Sukhdeo was a 1962 medical graduate of UWI (then UCWI ) and had a distinguished career in Psychiatry. His post-graduate studies were done at Yale where he was an Associate Professor. He served at the University of Miami (1972 -1974) where he developed a Crisis Intervention Center and a Rape Treatment Center. He then worked at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (1975 -1986) where he practiced at a Crisis Intervention Center, a Full-service Mental Health Center and also ran the In-patient Psychiatric Unit.

He was an expert in the area of cults and mind control. He deprogrammed cult members including the Moonies, Harikrishnas and Scientologists.

In 1978, he was sent by the US State Department to Guyana to facilitate the rehabilitation of survivors of the mass suicide in Jonestown. In the 1990’s he served as a Consultant and Media expert in the Branch Davidians cult in Waco, Texas and the Heaven’s Gate sect in California.

He was actively involved with the UWI Medical Alumni Association since its inception in 1986. For many years he served as President of the Tri-State Chapter which donated stethoscopes annually to the medical students at Mona. He single-handedly established an extensive data base of all the Medical Alumni in the US.

In 1994, he personally called 23 medical alumni living in Central Florida inviting them to a luncheon meeting and presented the reasons why they should form a Chapter. Despite the long distances involved in gathering for meetings, the members and spouses present agreed to his proposal.  This led to the formation of the Central Florida Chapter which has remained very active. One project has been the donation of books (valued at USD 65,000) over the years to the libraries of the 3 campuses and Nassau.

After Hardat Sukhdeo died, the Central Florida Chapter decided to honor him by an annual scholarship in his name starting in 2018. The requirements are:  financial need, a minimum GPA of 2.75 and an essay entitled “The perception, need and role of Psychiatrists in Jamaica.” We are committed to the ongoing award of this scholarship valued at USD 1,500. Each year we have had many worthy applicants and have also been awarding Subsidiary scholarships of USD 750. In 2021 we awarded the usual scholarship of USD 1,500 and 3 Subsidiary scholarships of USD 750 each.


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