Rhianna Mc Kenzie
UWI will host its first ever virtual graduation as a result of the covid19 pandemic.
In a statement on Thursday, the university said the ceremonies will take place on January 11 and 12 and will be broadcast live on UWITV.
The university is the latest in a line of institutions such as Queen’s Royal College to move graduation ceremonies online rather than cancel them altogether.
The two-day event will consist of five ceremonies and cater to over 4,000 graduates in TT.
The university also announced its valedictorians from each faculty. They are Chikara Mitchell for the Faculty of Social Sciences, Richard Ali for the faculties of Food and Fgriculture and Science andTechnology, Suraj Sakal for Law, Keitjé Greaves for the Humanities and Education, and Shaquille Trotman from Medical Sciences.
Graduating with first-class honours with a BSc in psychology (special) and human resource management (minor), Mitchell aims to become a clinical psychologist.
Ali is the founder and principal of a private school. He is a husband and father to an eight-year-old girl, who he said is one of his biggest inspirations.
Completing his second bachelor’s degree in human ecology (special) nutritional sciences (major), Ali gives back to his community by designing meal plans for young student footballers at his alma mater St Benedict’s College.
In the statement, Sakal said he considers himself a “student of the world.” Graduating with a bachelor of laws, he said he is influenced by a myriad of sources including books, movies and even strangers and is inspired by “any person whether dead or still alive who has lived or is living their lives in full pursuit of whatever they desire, be it peace, money, happiness and the lot.”
With a bachelor of arts in musical arts, Greaves began his musical journey at St Mary’s College in his native St Lucia, where he played the six bass pan. He would eventually go on to learn the trombone, his now primary instrument, and play for regional stars such as Teddy Johnson, Da Ville, Blaxx, and Kees Dieffenthaller.
Trottman will be graduating with a bachelor of medicine and bachelor of surgery (MBBS), and told his mother at the age of four that he would be a doctor. He remains active in his community, teaching lessons at the Arouca Youth Club to underprivileged children.
Trottman said giving back is in his blood and seeks to become a world-renowned cardiothoracic surgeon as well as establish a foundation that provides medical care to those in need.
“UWI St Augustine wishes to congratulate our valedictorians as well as the entire graduating class of 2020,” said the statement. “We wish them all success and look forward to them making a positive impact on society.”