By Nadira Mohammed, Corporate Communications Intern
In a ceremony held at the Social Sciences Auditorium on USC’s Main Campus, the University of the Southern Caribbean (USC) inaugurated its 2023/2024 Associated Student Body (ASB) Executive on Monday, October 16, 2023. Under the theme of “Willing to Serve Beyond the Call of Duty,” these dedicated student leaders pledged to make a difference in the USC community.
The inauguration event commenced with a soul-stirring praise and worship set by I-Praise Ministries, creating a harmonious atmosphere filled with inspiration. The ceremony then took on a solemn note as Mrs. Julie-Ann Guy delivered the opening prayer, calling upon a spirit of unity and purpose for the ASB Executive and the USC community.
As anticipation filled the auditorium, the new ASB members were invited to the stage in reverse order of their positions as per their respective constituents, marking the beginning of their journey to serve beyond the call of duty.
The National Anthem of Trinidad and Tobago, beautifully played on the steelpan by Mr. Marc Anthony Burrows Jr., further added a sense of national pride to the event. Following this, Pastor Onesi La Fleur, USC’s Vice President of Student Services & Enrolment Management, addressed the audience, emphasizing the commitment of the ASB Executive to serve the USC community wholeheartedly.
An enchanting musical performance by Ms. Jewelle Cordice enthralled the audience and set the stage for the highly anticipated guest speaker, Dr. Barbara G. Reynolds, USC’s Vice President of Administration, Advancement, and Planning.
Dr. Reynolds delivered an engaging and thought-provoking speech that left a lasting impression on all in attendance. She quoted the well-known proverb, “If you think you are too small to make a difference, you haven’t spent a night with a mosquito,” and drew a parallel between the essential role of mosquitoes in an ecosystem and the significance of the ASB Executive in the USC community. Dr. Reynolds emphasized that just as mosquitoes, despite their size, are vital to the ecosystem, the ASB plays a crucial role in maintaining the university’s vibrancy and unity.
Continuing with her theme, Dr. Reynolds shared another proverb, “Even if the mosquito has nothing to boast of, it has got a voice for humming songs.” This proverb underscored the unique talents and voices that each ASB member brings to the USC community.
Dr. Reynolds concluded her address with, “Do not be like the mosquito and bite the owner of the house”, emphasizing the importance of maintaining a respectful and cooperative relationship between the ASB Executive and University Administration. Dr. Reynolds’s speech conveyed the critical role of the ASB Executive in maintaining the university’s health and vibrancy.
Following the outstanding speech by Dr. Reynolds, the ASB members were invited to stand, and Dr. Wilson was called upon to give the inaugural charge. In his address, Dr. Wilson emphasized the significance of responsible and ethical leadership, stating, “Leaders don’t abuse power, leaders don’t hide their personal desires behind the mask of leadership.” This charge reiterated USC’s commitment to nurturing principled leaders who lead by example.
The event concluded with Mr. Michael Gabriel delivering the vote of thanks and Mr. Gamir Malcolm offering a prayer of consecration. Both reflected the unity and shared commitment among the ASB Executive, USC administration, and the entire university community.
The 2023/2024 ASB Executive at the University of the Southern Caribbean has embarked on its mission to serve beyond the call of duty, fostering a spirit of unity, commitment, and responsible leadership. These dedicated student leaders, elected by their peers in an election held in April 2023, are set to make a positive impact on the USC community, maintaining the institution’s vibrancy and commitment to excellence in the academic year ahead.