Monday 15 July, 2019

Close to 200 bursaries issued at JWN Foundation's scholarship awards

Clement Lawrence (right), Chairman, JWN & JWN Foundation and Odetta Rockhead-Kerr (left), Vice President and Country Manager, Sutherland Global, embrace recipient Amarley Wright during the 2018 JWN Foundation Scholarship Awards ceremony.

Clement Lawrence (right), Chairman, JWN & JWN Foundation and Odetta Rockhead-Kerr (left), Vice President and Country Manager, Sutherland Global, embrace recipient Amarley Wright during the 2018 JWN Foundation Scholarship Awards ceremony.

The J. Wray & Nephew Foundation (JWNF) reiterated its commitment to transforming lives through education in its latest installment of its annual scholarship awards, which saw almost 200 bursaries being issued.

The ceremony, which took place at the Courtleigh Auditorium, New Kingston, on Tuesday, saw 185 students received bursaries ranging from $25,000 to $450,000. Thirty percent or 44 of these were issued for tertiary level study, while the remaining 70 per cent or 141 went to students at the secondary level.

The 2018 J Wray and Nephew Foundation Scholarship recipients pose with JWN executives and other guests at the awards ceremony. 

Clement ‘Jimmy’ Lawrence, the JWN Foundation chairman, said: “Our commitment is just as strong and further underscored by an increase in the number of scholarships available to our communities. In 2017, we quadrupled the scholarships available to our communities from 25 to 100, but fell short in the community uptake at 65.  This year, I am pleased to say we allotted 100 scholarships and will be issuing 102 community scholarships. This is because we had full uptake from our communities and saw the quality of the applications improve.”

Continuing, Lawrence said: “Additionally, 83 scholarships were issued to the children of our JWN staff, bringing the total number of scholarships issued by JWNF in 2018 to 185.”

The JWN Foundation operates under three pillars – education, culture and social inclusion – and focuses its attention in areas surrounding its business operations at Spanish Town Road in Kingston; New Yarmouth in Clarendon and Appleton Estate in St. Elizabeth. In 2017, it announced its medium term objective of issuing 200 community level bursaries by 2021. This year’s allocation moves the Foundation closer to that goal and up-take was enhanced through JWN Foundation’s work with its Community Councils and schools.

Dr. Joy Spence (right), JWN’s Master Blender, presents one of the JWNF Foundation’s Master Blender Scholarship Awards named in her honour to Reania Francis, during the 2018 JWN Foundation Scholarship Awards ceremony.

“The JWN Foundation recognizes that the impact of our investment is not limited to the individual who is supported, but instead transcends into a transformational effect on families and communities,” said Lawrence. “We hold firm in our belief that our investment will also serve to shape and empower Jamaica’s future leaders and ultimately contribute to national growth.”

Feedback from the external panel and educators involved in last year’s scholarship process led to a doubling of the bursaries available at the tertiary level from 10 to 20 at a cost of more than $5 million. Accounted for in this budget are five scholarships valued at $450,000.00, two bursaries for $400,000 each and 13 tertiary grants valued at $200,000 each, up from $180,000.00 in 2016 and 2017.  

Tanikie McClarthy Allen (left), JWNF Director and JWN’s Director, Public Affairs and Sustainability, with Education Minister Ruel Reid (right) and Dr. Fritz Pinnock (centre), President, Caribbean Maritime Institute.

Included in the premium scholarships are three Joy Spence Master Blender Awards, a recognition of the excellence of the world’s first ever female Master Blender, Dr. Joy Spence, who made the presentations. The Dr. Fritz Pinnock Scholarship Awards for study at Caribbean Maritime University (CMU), which is a collaborative with the American Caribbean Maritime Foundation (ACMF) and the Minister of Education Scholarship for Excellence in Education, which also emanates from a partnership, with the Ministry of Education.

Both Dr. Fritz Pinnock and the Minister of Education, Ruel Reid, were on hand to present these awards.

The Scholarship Awards ceremony was themed ‘Never give up, persevere to break barriers’, with Vice President and Country Manager, Sutherland Global, Mrs. Odetta Rockhead-Kerr, as the motivational speaker. Mrs. Rockhead-Kerr shared her life story while encouraging award recipients, “don’t let anything stop you from achieving your dreams”.

Since its inception in 2012, the JWNF has awarded over $35 million to students within communities in which it operates, assisting them to complete their education. This reaffirms a commitment to positively shape lives through educational development and the promise of a better future for the next leaders of our country. 

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