College of The Bahamas (COB) President Janyne Hodder (centre) poses, on January 5, 2008, with faculty members and two students recently awarded $10,000 scholarships by the Canadian Government. Pictured, from left, are COB Vice President of Research, Graduate Programmes and International Relations Dr. Linda Davis; COB student Bianca Dean; Mrs. Hodder; COB student Dennise Newton and COB International Relations Liaison Valdez K. Russell. (Photo: Derek Smith)
By ERIC ROSE
NASSAU. The Bahamas – The $10,000 Canadian Government scholarships recently awarded to two College of The Bahamas students are examples of partnerships and agreements that the university has with over 170 institutions worldwide.
“We have something along the line of 175 that we have articulation agreements and then we are increasing the number of exchange agreements that students can take advantage of (attending),” said COB International Relations Liaison Valdez K. Russell.
COB President Janyne Hodder added that COB is also looking into building opportunities to welcome students of other institutions to study in The Bahamas, offering them courses and experiences that might not be available where they currently are, especially in terms of ocean and environmental studies.
“We need to identify those places where we can give something to international students that they cannot get at home, the same way they are giving Bahamian students something we cannot give,” Mrs. Hodder said.
She added that such interactions would automatically cause COB to be constantly building an international standard, which is an important part of the institution’s strategy.
COB students Bianca Dean and Dennise Newton received the award funding for a short-term study abroad programme in Canada.
According to a COB press release, Miss Dean, a junior study business administration, will spend the spring semester at St. Francis Xavier University, Nova Scotia, Canada. St. Francis has been ranked as “the number one primarily undergraduate institution in Canada” by Maclean’s magazine for five consecutive years.
Miss Newton, a senior in tourism and hospitality management, will complete her degree at Holland College, located in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, the release stated. Holland College, the release continued, is an international leader in “hands on, skill based training.”
Both students were selected from a pool of about 20 COB students in Nassau and Freeport.
The release said the candidates demonstrated a “commitment of academic excellence during their individual interviews and expressed a willingness to serve as ambassadors of the College of he Bahamas and the nation.”
Miss Dean said she is a graduate of COB, when the institution only offered associate degrees. She said she is excited about the new opportunity she is receiving the second time around.
“I am excited about the opportunity and I am literally speechless,” she said. “This is my old alma mater and to see them doing these wonderful, exciting things for students, it’s really an encouragement.”
“When I first found out, I was shocked,” said Ms Newton. “I asked Mr. Russell if he was serious it was me. I’m still just taking it all in. I haven’t stopped smiling since I found out the news. I am really excited and very happy that I was chosen to get this scholarship.”
The scholarships will cover travel, living and other related expenses. The awardees will depart Nassau on January 11, 2008 and return in mid-May.