IGL Is A Gold Star Supporter – The UWI Vice-Chancellor
Photo Above: (l-r) Bevon Francis, Chairman IGL Board; Samantha Rufus, Nursing student; Britney Hay, Nursing student; Jeremiah Baker, medical student; and Sheryl Lee Smith, Nursing student.
Kingston, December 10, 2021 – IGL Ltd and it’s IGNITE IGL Foundation have been praised as a “Gold Star” supporter by The University of the West Indies’ Vice-Chancellor, Professor Sir Hilary Beckles.
Speaking at the presentation of five scholarships to two students of medicine and three nursing students at The UWI Faculty of Medical Sciences by the Foundation, Professor Beckles said “we thank IGL for demonstrating the finest ethical values in offering these scholarships even in the midst of a pandemic. Jamaica is in urgent need of this level of consciousness. You are not a fair weather supporter”.
Receiving the Razai Azard Rahaman Scholarship for Medicine were Briana Foster and Jeremiah Baker while the IGL Legacy Scholarships for Nursing went to Sheryllee Smith, Samantha Rufus and Britney Hay.
Describing the UWI Faculty of Medical Sciences as “one of the best in the world”, Professor Beckles said “I am here to express gratitude on behalf of The UWI, students and medical fraternity to a company that has gone beyond the PNL to contribute to the development of young people, and the development of a nation”.
“Our expectation is that corporations must not just be profitable, but should also look around them to see how they can help to develop the youth and the environment. Our medical fraternity is deserving of that support!”
Professor Beckles said that The UWI helped Jamaica and the Caribbean to prepare as best as any country could be for the onslaught of the Covid-19 pandemic, utilizing intelligence from its Centre in China, “which allowed for the monitoring of the context and contour of this virus before the first case was even detected here.”
“We were the first university in the world to establish a Task Force to prepare the region for the arrival of the virus and thanks is due to the medical fraternity here and across the region who have been in the trenches day and night working to administer treatment”.
Describing the Faculty of Medical Science as “the UWI’s ancestral home” since the UWI began in 1948 with a medical school of “a few dozen students dedicated to tackling all the ills of the society”, Professor Beckles said “Today there is no finer medical facility in the world. Day by day, decade by decade, our graduates are dealing with the public health of the region.
We have held true to the pedagogy of Community Medicine and Public Health, this is how we train our students. I urge our graduates now to participate in the manufacture of critical resources here in Jamaica, the Caribbean.”
Addressing the scholarship awards presentation, Dr. Carl Bruce, Medical Chief of Staff, the University Hospital of the West Indies (UHWI) praised IGL for their support to the hospital during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Applauding IGL’s decision to establish a Medical Oxygen manufacturing plant in Kingston several years ago, Dr. Bruce said that having a local source was a tremendous help when the demand for the product rose to unprecedented levels earlier this year. “IGL worked out a logistics rotation to ensure we had supplies and when they imported medical Oxygen to augment local production their teams were at the wharves in the middle of the night, early morning to clear and bring the product to us and other health institutions. That goes far beyond corporate citizenship!”
IGL Managing Director Peter Graham thanked the UHWI for their collaboration noting that “our IGL teams have stood side by side with medical personnel at our various health facilities as we ensured the delivery of Medical Oxygen for the benefit of Jamaicans. The high level of collaboration and cooperation between the medical fraternity and IGL has had an encouraging impact on the containment of the Covid-19 pandemic.”
Bevon Francis, Chairman of IGL said that the scholarship presentation ceremony was a very special occasion for the company as it attempts to “pay it forward for the many gifted persons who without financial assistance could not earn a university degree.”
“We know that as a developing nation Jamaica requires the highest calibre of graduates including doctors and nurses, with the skill sets essential to build a stronger society. Providing these scholarships not just support for students but also The UWI itself – one of the region’s most transformational institutions.”
Mr. Francis said that research has proven that the benefit of Higher Education goes beyond financial wins as in addition to being more gainfully employed, graduates are likely to be active citizens, lead healthier lifestyles and give back to their community. He noted that “IGL has already seen this with our previous IGNITE IGL scholars who have been volunteering with us in communities in and around our Spanish Town plant and nearby underserved communities.”
“The IGNITE IGL scholarships are our contribution to lifting up an exceptional cadre of persons, our investment in a future generation of health sector workers for the benefit of Jamaica”, he declared.
Dr. Samantha Mosha, now an intern at the Bustamante Children’s Hospital praised IGL and IGNITE IGL for the scholarship which she said was responsible for her “being where I am today”. Equally fulfilling for her, she said, was “the opportunity to combine a spiritual calling with my medical mission, working with the IGL teams in Riverton and other communities including presenting food packages and mentoring youth.”
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