By Christopher Tobutt
It was a really big Celebration at the UCCI on Wednesday 17 August, because it was the biggest ever graduating class. Hundreds of Bachelors, Associates and Certificate graduates gathered in the Sir Vassell Johnson Hall in their black, blue and bright yellow graduation gowns.
UCCI Acting President Dr. J.D Mosely-Matchett told all the students: “You are amazing. You survived years of pandemic madness that ripped you from the traditional structures of academic life, with face to face classrooms, lectures and exams. Instead you found yourself managing government-mandated lockdowns, global uncertainty. So you found novel ways to tackle traditional problems and you created innovative pathways for learning. You demonstrated ability to adapt and triumph and will be the strength that sets you apart from others who graduated before you” she said. “The UCCI already has British accreditation through the Accreditation Service for International Colleges. We also have programme-level accreditation for our business degrees through the International Accreditation Council for Business Education and for our technical and vocational programmes through the National Centre for Construction Education & Research. However, attaining accreditation from the most stringent accreditor in the United States will further validate the academic achievement you are attaining today. As the UCCI grows in international stature and achievement, your degree becomes more valuable. And as the value of your degree grows, so do your opportunities,” Chairman of UCCI board Gilbert McLean said, “It is a privilege and a pleasure on behalf of the Board of Governors of the University College of the Cayman Islands, that I can congratulate our graduates of 2022, for successfully completing their programmes. The proudest day for UCCI is Commencement Day, when our students, their friends and family, instructors, mentors and advisors gather to celebrate the completion of years of hard work, dedication and commitment. Your graduation from the University College of the Cayman Islands is not the endpoint of your education, but a bridge to endless possibilities. A world of opportunity awaits you as you graduate and the credential you have earned will open many doors. Even with the difficulties of the pandemic, thanks to all of you, UCCI has gone from strength to strength. In the academic year 2020 to 2021 UCCI saw a 17% increase in enrolments to 1,941 students across the Grand Cayman and Cayman Brac campuses. This is the greatest number of students ever to enroll during an academic year”.
Minister of Education the Hon. Juliana O’Connor-Connolly praised all the students for achieving so much. “We are a small island but we tower, so let’s go and show the world that it doesn’t matter where you come from. What matters is your determination, your goal and your objectives to achieve,” she said. come back to my beautiful cayman. Make a difference in this country …the ripple effect will affect the whole world. Yes we can yes we will love you love you very much.
Minister of Tourism and Transport the Hon. Kenneth Bryan said, “We are happy to be here as a government because today ceLebrates a major achievement I think this is one of the biggest classes we’ve every had and we are happy to see from a tertiary level of education so many Caymanians graduating the pact administration made education the number one priority, and it is our intention by the end of this administration to offer education for UCCI and ICCI to be free of cost for every single Caymanian who wants an education. We see education not as an expense but as an investment. Studies show that countries that have more years of continuing education, the value of their country is high.
Keynote speaker Winston Connolly said, “I remember being in your shoes, and thinking about the possibilities of the future,” before going on to talk about the importance of building strong bridges in your life. “The process of building a bridge requires hard work and diligence. But once its finished something strong something safe something amazing and marvelous has been erected. All of you sitting here tonight are about to graduation. You have crossed a bridge that was started long before you began your journey.”
The Government has sought feedback on the Digital Identity bill which is to be debated in parliament. Do you support the introduction of this Bill?