Over 600 delegates (called the laity or spiritual ambassadors) from 54 countries across the Inter-American Division will converge at the University of the Southern Caribbean’s campus throughout the period August 8-11for cross-cultural training in missions. This international event will take place in the University’s Auditorium and is the second major event to take place in the building since its completion in May 2018.
Some objectives of the Festival of the Laity include: equip the laity with leadership and diversity skills, help foster a deeper understanding of mission and provide insight on how to use various strategies to reach oppressed and hurting individuals.
According to Dr. Clive Dottin, Director of Cross-Cultural Mission at the Caribbean Union Conference of SDA, the event taking place in Trinidad and Tobago (T&T) will benefit not just the T&T, but the wider Caribbean in a big way. Speaking to the national media, he thanked Dr. Hilary Bowman, President of USC and his team, and Dr. Kern Tobias, President of the Caribbean Union Conference of SDA for working to ensure that the event is a success.
Faculty and staff of the University will be heavily involved to ensure the success of this event which begins on Wednesday August 8, 2018 with an opening ceremony at 6:00pm.
All are invited to attend the opening ceremony and the Sabbath Service and Parade of Nations on August 11, 2018.
The Maracas Valley community was on Sunday, August 5, 2018, treated to free health services and consultations on the grounds of the USC Health and Wellness Center. The Community Medical Fair, hosted by USC’s Health Services Department, allowed interested persons to access various medical services including, nutrition counselling, blood sugar and blood pressure checks, vision screening, dental examinations, fertility counselling, women’s health checks and HIV testing among others.
The Staff (Nurses and Doctors) of the USC Health Services department were also on hand to provide free medical consultations for persons requiring further assistance. This annual event showcases USC’s commitment to the community in which it serves and seeks to foster meaningful relationships with the public it continues to fulfil its mandate as a Christian institution. The USC Health and Wellness Center is a full-service clinic offering a Doctor’s Clinic and various health services to the University community and also the Maracas Valley community.
For more information on the Center’s offerings, call 612-4782 ext. 4028/4029.
USC Music’s annual Summer Symphony Music Camp has begun. This exciting music camp started on July 9th and ends on July 21st. Children between the ages of 5-16 will get a chance to participate in daily activities such as Art & Craft, Music Theory/History, Instrumental Instruction, Choral Ensemble and Instrumental Ensemble. These activities aim to help children develop life lasting social and emotional skills.
Under the leadership of Mr. Niall Edwards and Chelsea Sealy along with a team of qualified instructors, campers will be inspired and motivated to embrace risks utilizing their skills without the looming fear of failure and repercussions. They will get a chance to enjoy an experience in music education specifically crafted to meet their needs. On July 17th campers will be heading to the National Academy of the Performing Arts (NAPA) and the National Steel Symphonic Orchestra for an educational field trip. On the 21st, campers will then get the opportunity to showcase all they have learnt during a concert which will be held in the Social Sciences Auditorium at the University of the Southern Caribbean.
A significant milestone in the University’s history was met on July 2, 2018, one day after the 2018 Graduation exercises took place on the USC campus. The age-old dream of erecting a Church at USC became a reality when the groundbreaking ceremony for the state-of-the-art Church and Mission Center took place at approximately 10:00 am.
Attended by Church leaders, USC administrators, faculty, staff, church members and representatives from nearly all the fields within the Caribbean Union Conference of SDA, attendees celebrated the day’s arrival.
For years, members of the Caring University Church have worked toward erecting a structure dedicated to the honour and glory of God. The project was made more possible through the partial assistance of the World Church’s 13th Sabbath offering and donations from church members and other key stakeholders. This support has provided the building project with the resources needed to make substantial progress, but there is still a long way to go.
Dr Hilary Bowman, University President, during his brief remarks at the ceremony mentioned, “This is the time for this church, this is the time; it will happen…Our super goal is to have this church built and dedicated on the 22nd of December, 2019. Let’s have the faith.”
Speaking briefly at the event, Dr Kern Tobias, President of the Caribbean Union Conference, and Chairman of the USC Board of Trustees brought greetings to the USC Church leadership on reaching this milestone. His brief message was entitled “Please Build Me a Sanctuary.” He noted that God has had a perpetual plan throughout history, a plan that serves as a reminder that God was/is among His people; and that plan is a sanctuary.
Following the message from Dr Tobias, the USC Church leadership and USC administration launched a fundraising campaign that will help garner funds which will be used to further the building. Pledges were made not only by the various field Presidents but also by church members and administrators alike.
One such donor attending the event on July 2nd was USC Church member Cecelia Mahabirsingh. The 75-year-old retired nurse, speaking to the audience shared how she was inspired by the Holy Spirit to give of her best to the completion of the USC Church. She noted the number of blessings that were being bestowed on her since her decision to give monthly toward the cause.
Construction on the Church and Mission Center begins on August 27, 2018, the day that USC celebrates its 91st Anniversary.
On the final day of the 2018 Graduation exercises, five hundred and eighty-two students from the University’s five schools and across its various campuses received their USC degrees.
The academic processions which took place in the newly constructed University auditorium brought scores of parents, supporters and well-wishers to the University’s Maracas Valley campus to witness the momentous occasion on July 1, 2018.
Graduands from the USC School of Business and the School of Science, Technology and Allied Health walked the stage during the morning Commencement Ceremony which began at 9:00 am. The keynote address for this ceremony was delivered by Dr Richard Hart, President of Loma Linda University. Dr Hart’s message sought to inspire graduands to live out their best lives and pursue a passion.
Among the many admonitions given to the Class of 2018 by Dr Hart was the importance of being a great leader, dealing with failure and gaining wisdom.
Graduands from the School of Education and Humanities, the School of Social Sciences and the School of Theology and Religion walked the stage during the evening’s Commencement ceremony which took place at 2:30 pm. The keynote address was delivered by Dr Walter B.T. Douglas, retired founder and director for the Center of Diversity at Andrews University. In his address, Dr Douglas honoured his sister for her selfless decision to drop out of College in order for him to continue his education at the Caribbean Union College now USC. He boasted that his foundation was framed at this campus.
Using the class motto and aim, Dr Douglas brought graduands into a deeper thinking about the role that they are now tasked with as they represent their aim and motto in the world: “Advancing Ever, Impacting Always” and “Created to Conquer, Molded to Endure.”
“Are you prepared to pay the cost of your discipleship? How do you plan to live out the content of your aim and motto?” he asked.
This year, Dr Douglas was the honorary degree recipient during the morning’s graduation ceremony. This accolade was bestowed on him for his continued dedication to Christian education, the University of the Southern Caribbean and the world at large. He was awarded Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa. At the evening Commencement ceremony, Dr. Gordon O. Martinborough was the recipient of an honorary degree, Doctor of Divinity, bestowed on him for his dedication to the church and to Christian education.
Present at the event was the Honorable Michael S. Brown, Minister of Education of the Government of Antigua and Barbuda. Minister Brown attended the Commencement exercises in support of the first cohort of graduates from Antigua who successfully completed a Bachelors in Special Education through an MOU signed with USC and the Antiguan Government under the previous administration. He spoke to the audience expressing his delight for the group of 12 graduands.
Also, among the graduands was a family of four, a father, mother and their two sons who all graduated with honours from USC. This significant accomplishment was highlighted by Dr Hilary Bowman, University President, during his promulgation address. “I believe that USC is the only Caribbean university where a family of five could attend without the necessary funds and graduate as a family of four with one still a student at the university…he said”
In his address, Dr Bowman also pointed out several new developments toward which the University is working, among them, discussions with the renowned Johns Hopkins University, USA, to form an academic alliance to offer the Nurse Practitioner’s Program which would lead to the DNP (Doctor in Nurse Practice) and allow Caribbean Nurses to Practice Nursing beyond the level of a registered nurse.
The graduation exercises were held on campus for the first time in six years since a fire in 2012 ravished the University’s then auditorium. This was made possible due to a monumental drive spearheaded by the University’s administration and stakeholders. The University offers over 45 undergraduate and graduate degree programmes across several disciplines and boasts of a diverse student, faculty and staff body.
Highlights of the 2018 Graduation Exercises
The University of the Southern Caribbean’s 2018 Graduation Exercises begin today, June 29, 2018 with the Consecration Service and ends on Sunday, July 1, 2018 with two Commencement Ceremonies.
Graduands from the School of Business and the School of Science, Technology and Allied Health are expected to cross the stage to receive their diplomas at the first ceremony which begins at 9:00am in the University Auditorium, Maracas, Valley, St. Joseph.
Graduands from the School of Education and Humanities, the School of Social Sciences and the School of Theology and Religion will receive their diplomas at the second ceremony which begins at 2:30pm in the University Auditorium.
All of the weekend’s ceremonies will be streamed live. To view the various ceremonies, please follow the links below.
Alternatively, you may also view the live stream via our Facebook page
Her Excellency, Paula-Mae Weekes, President of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago paid a courtesy visit to the University of the Southern Caribbean’s Maracas Valley campus on the morning of. Her brief visit included meeting the USC administration and a group of students and also a campus tour,
Her Excellency was sworn-in to office on March 19, 2018, making her the first female Head-of-State of Trinidad and Tobago.
The University of the Southern Caribbean will hosts its eighty-fifth graduation exercises from June 29 – July 1, 2018, in its University Auditorium, Maracas Valley, St. Joseph. Two speakers have been announced for the Commencement Ceremonies which will take place on July 1, 2018.
Morning Commencement Speaker
Dr. Richard Hart
President, Loma Linda University Health
Sunday July 1, 2018 | 9:00am
Dr. Richard Hart currently serves as President of Loma Linda University Health, the umbrella corporation that includes the enterprise’s academic, healthcare, and research organizations. He earned his Doctor of Medicine degree from LLU School of Medicine in 1970, followed by a Doctor of Public Health in International Health at Johns Hopkins University in 1977, also becoming Board certified in Preventive Medicine.
Evening Commencement Speaker
Dr. Walter Douglas
Founder and Former Director of The Institute of Diversity and Multiculturalism at Andrews University.
Sunday July 1, 2018 | 2:30pm
Dr. Walter B. T. Douglas, is a native of Grenada and an alumnus of the former Caribbean Union College, now University of the Southern Caribbean. His embryonic training for ministry took place on these hallowed grounds. He was founder and director of The Institute of Diversity and Multiculturalism at Andrews University. Prior to serving as director, he served as Affirmative Action Officer and Ombudsperson for ten years. He also served for 35 years at the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary at Andrews University as professor of Church history and History of religion. Ten of those years were served as Chair of the Church History department.
Through his varied professional experiences, Dr. Douglas has had the opportunity to work with and train hundreds of individuals in a diverse array of backgrounds and cultures. His distinguished career as an international lecturer and diversity consultant, has took him far off lands inclusive of Australia, New Zealand, several countries on the vast African continent, Asia,
South America, Europe, the Caribbean and across North America. Dr. Douglas has also published widely on issues of diversity, multicultural education, cross-cultural communication, institutional assessments, world religions, missions and Church history. He has won many awards and received various distinctions over the years.
The eighty-fifth Graduation exercises will be broadcast live from the University’s website and from the social media platform – Facebook.
On Friday June 8th, 2018, Dr Hilary Bowman, University President made a presentation at the 5th Annual Medical Conference and Community Outreach Programme, hosted by Caribbean Medical Providers Practicing Abroad (CMPA) in Association with The New Jersey Medical Association. The event was hosted for the Caribbean medical diaspora & the Caribbean medical fraternity under the title “Ending the Needless Deaths in the Caribbean Due to Non-Communicable Diseases, Cancers & Strokes”. The CMPPA is actively involved in outreach and medical assistance in the Caribbean and aims at developing the quality of healthcare in the region.
Dr Bowman began his presentation by citing several concerned authorities in the medical field across the Caribbean who all lament over the availability of skilled medical staff in the public sector. These sources state that while it may seem that we are producing many of these professionals, over half of these individuals end up functioning abroad.
He then went on to describe the state of training and the development of the role of such personnel, specifically nurses, and how the importance of nurses rose relative to the calibre of nurses through history. Even as this is so, there is a great need for training in the Caribbean as nurses play a critical role in providing the primary source of healthcare for most communities in the Caribbean and more so for the under-served and rural communities.
A tremendous contributing factor to the quality of healthcare is proper recruitment and selection processes. These, of course are just the base concerns, as proper training and facilitation of thorough learning are key to an overall improved healthcare system.
He expressed gratitude and hope for the Caribbean as governments begin to join the train of proactive healthcare training and endorsing and supporting the institutions that provide training to these would be professionals. He noted that governments have a huge role to play in prevention of communicable disease through the improvement of the health care landscape through training and funding and they are endeavoring to do so.
A terrible disparity of salaries was highlighted as one of the main reasons for the movement of nurses to more developed countries, stating that until this worrisome situation is addressed, we will continue to experience the drain of professionals in this region.
Dr Bowman encouraged the professionals to have a more long-term approach to healthcare, and encouraged the development of preventative care across the region. He highlighted the benefits of this care in communities such as Loma Linda, the only BLUE ZONE (an area of unusually high quality of life and wellness) in the United States.
He ended his presentation by admonishing attendees to pay attention to their own personal diet and lifestyle as a measure to improve the overall health of the region, and further encouraged cooperation between governments, communities and organizations such as the CMPPA as a means of effectively addressing and improving the state of healthcare in the Caribbean.
A third-year student of the University of the Southern Caribbean was yesterday adjudged the winner of the Guardian Editor of the Day initiative.
Abigail Frances Gittens, 20, who is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in English with an emphasis on Communications could not contain her joy and screams when told of the good news.