The University of the Southern Caribbean remembers the life of Dr. George Carlington Simmons, an outstanding citizen and leader in our global university community.
The memorial service for Dr. George Carlington Simmons will be held on Sunday, February 27, 2022 at 4:00pm. View on YouTube at: youtube.com/universityofthesoutherncaribbean
We regret to announce the passing of Alicia and Amanda Charles on Thursday, February 17, 2022. They were the daughters of Angus and Ellen Charles, sisters of Allister Charles; cousins of Natasha Williams-La Motte, Administrative Assistant to the Vice President in the Division of Student Services & Enrollment Management and Natalie Williams, past employee of the University.
Alicia worked as an “On the Job Trainee” (OJT) at the University of the Southern Caribbean in the Student Advisement Center as an Office Assistant for a short period from October 1, 2013 to October 31, 2013. Her past colleagues described her as having a quiet personality and a beautiful smile.
Amanda began her journey at the University of the Southern Caribbean as a student in the School of Business & Entrepreneurship. As a student she worked in the Admissions and Records-Transfer Credit, Department from March 2011 to December 2013. As part of her graduation requirements, January 6, 2014, she became a team member in the Human Resources Department as a Human Resource Assistant Intern.
On May 17, 2015, Amanda graduated with honors—Cum Laude from the USC with a Bachelor of Business Administration with a Human Resource Management Emphasis. Following her success, she worked as an “On the Job Trainee” (OJT), thereafter she was employed on contract as a Human Resource Assistant, and finally was permanently employed as the Human Resource Officer from May 1, 2019 until her untimely passing on February 17, 2022.
The charming, quiet personality, always smiling Amanda Melicia Charles will be missed by her immediate and past colleagues in the Human Resources Department, the University Registry/Records Office, the Administration, faculty, staff and students of the University not excluding the Satellite Sites.
The celebration of life for Alicia and Amanda will be given in a subsequent announcement.
USC’s Student Advisement Centre (SAC) recognizes the difficulties that students confront when participating in online learning. On February 3, 2022, Mr. Cecil Calliste, through the Needy Student Laptop Project presented USC students with laptops to aid in their studies.
At a presentation ceremony, hosted on USC’s Main Campus, Mr. Calliste, 81, retired Chief Anaesthesiology technician and a sponsor for the last two years of the university, graciously rose to the occasion by aiding several students. His donation aims to assist students as they maintain a positive relationship with their education.
Cecil Calliste highlighted the need for education and charitable giving. He demonstrated throughout his life that it is better to give than to always take. He is thankful to be blessed with the opportunities to assist those in need.
About Cecil Calliste
Cecil Calliste, native to Trinidad was born and raised in Sangre Grande and worked for a short duration of time in the Community Hospital of SDA. He then migrated to the United States in 1967 and worked in the Rosewood State hospital, Maryland and Boling Green Hospital, Ohio. He retired after working at Suburban Hospital in Maryland. It is there, where he met his now-lifelong friend and surgeon, Dr. Salander.
Both Dr. Salander and Mr. Calliste both since devoted themselves to charitable work in the United States, Maryland and the Caribbean region. The Needy Student Laptop Project, launched in January 2022 is a collaborative initiative spearheaded by Mr. Calliste, Dr. Salanader and USC’s Student Advisement Center (SAC).
Author: Susan Chand, PhD – Director, Office of Research & Innovation
President’s Brown Bag Series was launched by the former President, Dr. Trevor Gardner after USC was awarded a university status by the Accreditation Council of Trinidad and Tobago in 2006. Brown Bag Series was envisioned to be a platform for intellectual discourse and discussion for faculty at USC. The first lecture was delivered by an erudite Professor of Sociology, late Dr. Letroy Cummings from the School of Social Sciences. Dr. Cummings’s lecture drew from his extensive research based on content analysis of newspaper articles on intimate partner violence in Guyana. His work was published in the USC Journal of Research Volume II (2011) entitled “Incidents and Explanations of Romantic Homicides in Guyana”. This was the only series that was launched.
In 2015, Academic Forum was launched along the same objectives as the President’s Brown Bag Series. Academic Forum was conceptualized by the then Dean of Distance Education, Dr. Sylvan Lashley to offer engaging and constructive discussion around the presentations of scholarly work by faculty, staff or students. Two Academic Forums were held each semester.
The first Academic Forum was launched by the President, Dr. Clinton Valley on September 2, 2015, with Dr. Lashley and Ms. Colleen Letlow presenting their findings on their study, “Entrepreneurial teams at work: concepts and practices – live case. Since then, the Office of Research and Innovation has been hosting Academic Forums till the academic year 2020.
President’s Brown Bag Series Relaunch
The President’s Brown Bag Series was relaunched by our newly appointed 29th USC President, Dr. Colwick Wilson on November 10, 2021, via the zoom platform. This event featured Dr. Amanda Thomas, PhD, Research Methods and Statistics, Office of Research and Innovation, School of Graduate Studies and Research, USC. Her presentation was based on her doctoral thesis, “Differences in Academic Achievement between African American and African Caribbean Students studying in the United States: A Meta-Analysis”. This relaunch attracted over 40 attendees from USC community, members of the academic from the tertiary institutions of Trinidad and Tobago, Caribbean, and the United States.
President’s Brown Bag Series – 2 – A Phenomenal Lecture by Dr. Hansel M. Fletcher
On January 26, 2022, Dr. Hansel M. Fletcher, an accomplished scientist and professor of molecular genetics/biochemistry of microbial diseases with focus on oral bacterial pathogens delivered a seminal lecture on “Overcoming Environmental Stress: Survival skills and the impact of the oral microbiome on the host”. Dr. Fletcher is currently an Assistant Dean of Graduate Student Affairs and Professor of Microbiology and Genetics in the School of Medicine at Loma Linda University, California.
The Office of the President and the Office of Research and Innovation jointly hosted this event. The session commenced with an opening prayer by Dr. Llyod Jacott, Chaplain at USC. Dr. Susan Chand, Director of Research and Innovation, extended a warm welcome to all the attendees, and presented an overview of the President’s Brown Bag Series at USC. Dr. Colwick Wilson welcomed Dr. Fletcher and formally acknowledged the presence of all the attendees including Dr. Sanjay Ramnanan, President of the Dental Association of Trinidad and Tobago and Dr. Rahul Naidu, Professor of Dental Public Health, School of Dentistry, Faculty of Medical Sciences, University of the West Indies (UWI), St Augustine. The attendees included faculty, staff and students at the University of the Southern Caribbean, faculty and students from the School of Dentistry and the Department of Microbiology, UWI, members from the Dental Association of Trinidad and Tobago and Dentists and Medical Doctors from the Caribbean and the United States. Also among the attendees were Dr. Wayne Greaves, Executive Director, Infectious Diseases, Merck Research Laboratories, New Jersey, USA and Dr. Walter Murray, Managing Director, Leadership Training LLC, USA. Over 46 attendees were present at this event. Dr. Sanjay Ramnanan rendered his greetings and presented an overview of the Dental Association of Trinidad and Tobago. Dr. Edward Clarke, Dean, School of Social Sciences and Interim Dean of the School of Graduate Studies and Research introduced Dr. Fletcher. Dr. Angelle Bullard-Roberts responded to Dr. Fletcher’s lecture and mentioned that the diverse socio-cultural practices of the people of Trinidad impact their oral hygiene need to be addressed while making strides in oral health and overall well-being. She also iterated the need for collaborative research with the Loma Linda University, Dental Association of Trinidad and Tobago and the School of Dentistry. This was also expressed earlier by Dr. Ramnanan and later in his speech by Dr. Naidu. Dr. Rahul Naidu also responded to Dr. Fletcher’s lecture and asked a question ————(need to view the video for his question to Dr. Fletcher). Dr. Wanda Chesney accorded a vote of thanks to all contributing parties of the event, Dr. Fletcher, and the invitees. Dr. Kenneth Niles brought a close to the invigorating afternoon by a word of prayer.
Highlights of Dr. Fletcher’s Lecture:
Dr. Fletcher elucidated oral diseases as global health challenge affecting over 3.5 billion people globally. These chronic clinical conditions range from dental caries (tooth decay), periodontal (gum) disease, and cancer. He emphasized the relevancy of physical, social and psychosocial functioning as core elements for oral health and overall well-being. Dr. Fletcher highlighted the periodontal disease as an interaction of multiple factors leading to inflammation and bone loss. He further illustrated the host-microbe interaction that cause inflammation and bone loss. It was an astounding revelation that unhealthy teeth can be a causative factor for Alzheimer disease, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes and insulin resistance, adverse pregnancy outcomes, respiratory tract infection and bacterial pneumonia. Towards the end of his lecture, Dr. Fletcher acknowledged his past and present research team and their landmark research on Filifactor alocis’ virulent attributes and interactions with periodontal pathogens, namely Pophyromonas gingivalis. His future project involves integrating current and novel techniques to modulate Dysbiotic Oralome.
9th Annual Harold Baptiste Lectureship: The Pandemic, Vaccination, and the Crisis of Adventist Identity
USC’s 9th Annual Harold Baptiste Lectureship is scheduled for Thursday, February 3, 2022 at 10:00am AST.
This year’s featured presenter is Dr. Nicholas Miller, a Professor of Church History and Director of the International Religious Liberty Institute at Andrews University, and Barrister at Law.
Dr. Miller’s will present on the topic: The Pandemic, Vaccination, and the Crisis of Adventist Identity.
- Zoom – Meeting ID: 930 6845 4972
- YouTube: youtube.com/UniversityoftheSouthernCaribbean
Author: Hayden McKenna
The president, administration, faculty and staff, students, alumni, family and friends of the University of the Southern Caribbean join in mourning the recent passing of an outstanding citizen and leader in our global university community. Having lived for an entire century and some extra days, the brilliant lifetime innings of Dr. George Carlington Simmons closed on December 30th 2021, in the presence of family.
We express our deepest condolences to his closest surviving relatives: his daughter Cheryl G. Simmons, his son George W. Simmons, his brother E. Martin Simmons, his grand-daughter Brooke Simmons, numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.
George Carlington Simmons, affectionately called “Charlie” by some and “Fowler” by others, came to the crease in the Parish of St. Lucy on the British colony of Barbados on September 04, 1921. It is at St. Lucy he played his first watchful twenty. As his confidence grew, in 1941, he breached the boundary of life in St. Lucy and by 1945 he graduated from Caribbean Training College (now the University of the Southern Caribbean) in Maracas Valley, St. Joseph, Trinidad. His ambitious stroke-play, took him over several other notable academic, professional and personal boundaries.
His busy scoreboard was kept active at Andrews University in Berrien Springs, Michigan, USA, where he added a Baccalaureate degree to his score in 1951. The boundaries of Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois; St. Andrews University in Scotland, UK and the prestigious Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA were all conquered as this prodigious Barbadian added a Master of Arts degree (1953), a diploma in Education, (1960) and a Doctor of Philosophy degree (1963) respectively in his impressive run of form.
He was far from finished though. His education in the middle, prepared him for a celebrated career as an educator, classical scholar, bibliophile and philanthropist that extended beyond sixty years. In his rich professional life, he continued his assault on boundaries, taking the singles and twos also and drew-out a balanced wagon-wheel of accomplishments and service, in the Caribbean, North America and Europe. Dr. Simmons has lectured in Canada, Germany, Romania, and Britain. His scholarly articles and book reviews have appeared in several peer-review journals. Dr. Simmons co-authored with his wife the late Dr. Esther Simmons The Torch of Knowledge: A History of Bowie State University 1865 to 2005.
Dr. George Carlington Simmons has held academic professorships at the State University of New York (SUNY) Cortland and Brockport, and the University of Rochester. He retired from SUNY Brockport in 1985. In his retirement Dr. Simmons served for ten unbroken years (1990-2000) on the NY State Board of Professional Medical Conduct.
As a philantrophist, with a deep interest in community life and the plight of the urban poor, Dr. Simmons was attracted to the membership and work of several social and community organizations including Community Chest, Genesee Valley Group Health Association, Blue Cross and Blue Shield, YMCA, Gannett Foundation, the Bicentennial Committee of Rochester and Monroe County, and the Courtland Rotary Club. He also served as chairman of the National Council of Urban League Presidents, and as board president of the Urban League of Rochester, the Urban-Suburban Inter-District Transfer Program, and the Baden Street Settlement House. In recognition of more than 35 years of service as board member, on July 28, 1998, the Baden Street Settlement House named its new counseling and support center in his honour.
As an alumnus of USC, Dr. Simmons exhibited fidelity to a fault. In 1985, in response to the urgent need for a specialized reference library at the University of the Southern Caribbean, he established the George Carlington Simmons Collection. From a modest beginning, he grew the collection to approximately eight thousand volumes, on subjects of wide human interest including but not limited to Philosophy, Greek Literature, Psychology, Theology and Biblical Studies, Geography and Cartography, Music and Fine Arts, English Literature, History and Culture. The collection also includes a wide range of dictionaries and rare books including the 1600-year-old Codex Sinaiticus.
As a compatible companion to the collection, Dr. Simmons established and funded the George Carlington Simmons Collection Annual Lecture Series in 2004. Over the years, this series has featured talks from distinguished scholars and thought-leaders of international renown. The series has also attracted as patrons, Caribbean heads of state, prime ministers and senior members of the diplomatic corps. It quickly earned its place as a marquee event on the annual USC calendar.
Apart from donating the collection and organizing and funding the distinguished lecture series, Dr. Simmons’ affection for USC has made him a generous supporter of innumerable other university projects. His means, ideas, good name and influence were freely and passionately given to the steadfast pursuit of a more perfect USC.
In his well-constructed innings, Dr. Simmons also demonstrated the ability to play the role of a supportive partner on the non-striker’s end. USC benefitted greatly from this abetting aptitude when in October of 2003, Caribbean Union College, as USC was then known, suddenly required leadership. He teamed up with his wife the late Dr. Esther Simmons to give their beloved alma mater stabilizing leadership. In this partnership, he assumed the supportive role of interim Assistant to the President with the late Dr. Esther Simmons taking the strike as interim President.
On December 30, 2021, he was called from the crease by a declaration from the Divine Skipper. We will miss the sight and sound of his elegant stroke-play and we will sorrow, but not as those who have no hope. We believe that “the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God and the dead in Christ shall rise first. Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.” Let us “comfort one another with these words.” (1 Thessalonians 4: 16-18).
Author: Grace Jacott, Coordinator, ICCTL
On November 30, 2021, thirty proud members of the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (TTPS) received congratulatory remarks from the university president, Dr. Colwick Wilson, the provost, Dr. Wanda Chesney and the coordinator of ICCTL, Mrs. Grace Jacott, as they prepared to receive a Certificate of Achievement from USC for successfully completing a short course entitled “Spanish for Police Officers”.
This second cohort in the program advanced in their professional development under the training of Professor Juan Duque who coached them for eight weeks in a “task-based language teaching program”. As a result of the program, these police officers are now equipped to converse in Spanish as they perform tasks such as road blocks, house searches, and interviews at the police station.
In addition to promoting ESL, the ICCTL continues to organize relevant short language courses for personal and professional development of several groups. Considering the demand for Spanish both locally and regionally, upcoming programs include “Spanish for Immigration Officers” and “Spanish for the Clergy/Church Leaders”. The online platform makes these programs accessible regardless of location.
From Egypt to Canaan: The Journey Home – A Fundraising Telethon for students of USC’s School of Theology & Religion.
Join us on Sunday, December 19, 2021 from 9:00am for Preaching by International and Regional Preachers, Testimonies, Musical Concert, and Talent Exhibition.
Streamed on Facebook and Youtube – all proceeds go to the Pastoral Theological Training Fund (PTTF).
For more details visit: usc.edu.tt/egypttocanaan
The University of the Southern Caribbean extends sincere congratulations to the Government and people of the Republic of Barbados on this remarkable achievement on its journey of self-determination and ascendant nationhood.
May ever widening paths to peace and prosperity attend the pursuit of your collective aspirations for your new republic. We pray for the wellbeing of all Barbadians as you continue to strive harmoniously for the common good of every citizen.
God’s richest blessings.
Long live the Republic of Barbados.
The University of the Southern Caribbean (USC) is saddened by the recent passing of its alumnus, Pastor Livingstone Aaron. We join with several others in expressing our deepest condolences to his wife Cynthia (also a graduate of CUC/USC), his close relatives, friends and ministerial colleagues.
According to a release by the Caribbean Union Conference (CARU), at the time of his sudden passing, Pastor Aaron was serving as pastor of the Stroudsburg district, which includes the Stroudsburg, Pocono Grace, and Mount Pocono Haitian churches in the Pennsylvania Conference of Seventh-day Adventists in the United States.
Prior to migrating to the US in 2013, Pastor Aaron served as the Director of the Caribbean Union Revolving Fund (CURF) and is credited as an architect of its growth to redoubtable viability. Before his elevation to that directorship at the CARU, Pastor Aaron, a native of Antigua and Barbuda and a member of a prominent Adventist family there, served with distinction in pastoral ministry in the North Caribbean Conference.
Pastor Aaron’s formal preparation for ministry began at Caribbean Union College (now USC) in the second half of the 1970s. Among his contemporaries at CUC, was Dr. Colwick Wilson, the current President of USC. Dr. Wilson remembers his college-mate as “a diligent worker, a creative mind, a dedicated student… He was a friend of all. He consistently built relationships with others. He was passionate. He was clearly a man ahead of his time.”
Livingstone Aaron graduated as a member of the Class of 1982 with a Bachelor of Theology degree. With an unabated passion for ministerial preparation, he went on to Andrews University, Michigan, USA and there earned a Master Divinity degree in 1985. In 1990, he received the sacred rite of ordination.
Pastor Livingstone Aaron, in his life and career, modelled the USCian ethic and was an extraordinary servant of God to humanity. He had also grown accustomed to hearing and submitting to the voice of his Heavenly Father. That voice he will hear again on that great getting-up morning, and by the force of habit, he will respond in obedience and with victory over the sting of death. Let us all be comforted by this blessed hope.