2007 Commencement; Largest Graduating School of Arts and Sciences and Graduate Studies Program Class in St. George’s University History

charles modica with 2007 sas sgp graduating classOn Saturday, May 12th, the School of Arts and Sciences and Graduate Studies Program Commencement was held in the Bell Lecture Hall on the True Blue Campus.  While all graduations are momentous, this year’s commencement was particularly significant.

With a combined total of 170 graduates from both the undergraduate and graduate programs, the class of 2007 was the largest combined ceremony for the Schools of Arts and Sciences and the Graduate Studies Program in the University’s remarkable 30 year history.

Students and their families were honored by guest speaker The Honourable Mr. Justice Adrian D. Saunders, Judge of the Caribbean Court of Justice who eloquently delivered the keynote address for the commencement ceremony.

As Mr. Justice Saunders reflected on his own law school graduation 30 years prior, he explained to his captive audience that while they may have closed their text books for good, “Learning is a lifelong imperative.”  He continued, “Your years spent in classrooms up to this point have merely provided you with a launching pad, a platform upon which you will begin yet another and an even more productive round of learning and preparation for life’s challenges.”

Mr.  Justice Saunders emphasized the importance of recognizing and seizing every opportunity presented to them, even though they may appear to be inconspicuous or subtle at the time.   This was illustrated through his personal life experiences.  He explained that his gift and passion for law could have gone untapped had his hand not been literally and figuratively forced to make an immediate course of study selection on a college application. Until then, the field of law was never a consideration.

Almost 20 years later, yet another life changing opportunity presented itself in an invitation for judicial appointment.  In his early 40’s and a senior partner in a successful private practice at the time, the opportunity to become a judge, albeit flattering, involved a significant reduction in income as well as uprooting his family.  With two boys to educate, a mortgage payment and a future to save for, the timing was about 10 years premature.   Nevertheless, Mr. Justice Saunders realized that this opportunity may not surface again.  With the blessing of his family, he accepted the position and never regretted the decision. “Life is never a smooth sailing continuum.  Very often you have to take chances.  You can’t expect to cover every contingency before making a decision.  Ultimately it is more important to love what you do than take up or remain in a position just because it pays more,” he said.

Justice Saunders has distinguished himself in the legal profession and has been instrumental in several judicial reformations throughout the Caribbean region.

He has also given profound service in educating others in the legal profession and in championing the cause of youth, especially in his home country of St. Vincent, where he served as President of the National Youth Council of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

His final message to the students was to find enjoyment from life, stay focused on fulfilling your dreams and be proud of the wonderful institution that is SGU.

The commencement ceremony illustrated SGU’s vital contribution to human development on a global scale.  As students from nearly 20 countries were honored by SGU faculty including Chancellor Charles R. Modica, Provost Allen Pensick, Dean Theodore Hollis and Dean Calum Macpherson, one could not help but reflect on the evolution of this extraordinary university.As the number of students applying to SGU continues to rise, so too does the diversity and size of the student body.  The additions of new majors and programs will continue to offer SGU students exceptional opportunities both as an undergraduate and a graduate.This year SGU graduated 14 students from the inaugural Master of International Business program (MIB).  Students with an MIB were globally represented by the US, Guyana, South Africa and Grenada.  First time graduates with an MSc in Economics were also represented.  SGU looks forward to the continued expansion of the university, as it plays an integral role in the success of its current and future graduates.

Rev. Tessica Hackshaw, Superintendent Grenada Methodist Church and friend of the university, opened and closed the ceremony with a beautiful invocation and benediction.At the conclusion of the program, Chancellor Modica welcomed graduates to a reception at the Caribbean House to continue the festivities.

Published 5/16/2007

Spring 2007 Marks the Beginning of the Caribbean Visionary Scholarship Program

The University continues its philanthropic efforts as it begins a decade-long scholarship program designed to benefit academically gifted students from the Caribbean.  Beginning Spring 2007, the Caribbean Visionary Scholarship Program will reward the best and brightest students in the region with 100 scholarships for undergraduate degrees within the School of Arts and Sciences.

St. George’s recently announced the names of the first four recipients; impressive young men and women selected from a competitive pool of over 30 applicants.  The selection was based on the applicant’s performance on the Caribbean’s standardized external exam, CSEC (Caribbean Secondary Examination Certificate).  Only students with a converted Grade Point Average of 3.5 and above were considered

Michelle John

Michelle John

Gervette Penny

Gervette Penny

Rishi Karnani

Rishi Karnani

Reva Sharma

Reva Sharma

Of the four students, three are residents of Grenada.   Michelle John is 17 years old, was born in the US but resides in Grenada.  She attended St. Joseph’s Convent in St. Andrew’s and plans to study Management Information Systems at SGU.  Gervette Penny is a 16-year-old native Grenadian who attended Anglican High School.  She plans to study Life Sciences at St. George’s.  Rishi Karnani is 17, was born in Barbados and resides in Grenada.  He attended Westmorland High School and will be studying Business.  These three students enrolled in January.  Reva Sharma is 18, was born in Guyana, resides in the Bahamas and attended St. Anne’s High School.  She will be studying Liberal Studies with a specialization in Political Sciences.  Reva will be joining SGU in August.

St. George’s recognizes the immediate need to nurture and encourage those individuals whose innate talents and determination will chart the future course of the region.  This program is designed to complement the already existing, need-based CARICOM (Caribbean Community) Undergraduate Scholarship Program (CUSP) offered by the University.

Colin Dowe, Assistant Dean of Enrolment Planning, comments, “The Caribbean Visionary Scholarship is an opportunity for CARICOM citizens to transform themselves as they achieve a tertiary education and, in turn, to transform the Caribbean with their future endeavors.”

SGU is blanketing local and regional media with the news of this program.  It is the hope of the University that the Ministers of Government throughout the Caribbean will assist in assuring that this opportunity is accessible to all worthy students throughout the next 10 years.

For more information on the Caribbean Visionary Scholarship, please visit the School of Arts and Sciences Financial Aid section of the University website.

Published 3/2/2007

University Mourns Visionary Leader In Memoriam

Keith Breden Taylor, DM, FRCP
16 April 1924 – 31 December 2006

Dr Taylor HeadshotThere is often disagreement as to whether the man makes history or history makes the man. There is no disagreement at St. George’s University that Keith B. Taylor made SGU history, and, along with Chancellor Charles Modica and former Vice Chancellor Geoffrey Bourne, put St. George’s University on the world’s radar screen. Because of his tireless efforts and unswerving dedication, St. George’s was transformed from a medical school which was the first and best of its kind in the Caribbean, to an international, world class University with many schools and programs and a vibrant research institute needed in the region.

Dr. Taylor came to SGU from Stanford University where he had served in academic medicine for 30 years. As well as being appointed the George de Forest Barnett Professor of Medicine he also served as Vice Chairman of the Department of Medicine and the Chief of Medical Service, Palo Alto Veterans Administration Hospital. Prior to his achievements at Stanford, Dr. Taylor had been a senior lecturer in medicine at the Nuffield Department of Medicine, Oxford. He had won many awards and prizes during his medical school years and postgraduate work as he began a lifetime of achievement in research and clinical medicine. Dr. Taylor published over 100 papers and abstracts in international peer reviewed journals such as Nature, Science, The Lancet, New England Journal of Medicine, the British Medical Journal, Gut, Gastroenterology, and Clinical Science. He published nine book chapters and was widely regarded as the leading authority on many areas of gastroenterology, particularly in the area of vitamin B12 absorption and pernicious anemia.

Dr. Taylor believed deeply in the concept that international communications and networking were vital in the world of medicine; he traveled widely as a visiting professor, lecturing and learning at the University of Chicago, Harvard University, Boston University, Wisconsin at Madison, Baylor in Texas, Rochester in New York, Washington in Seattle, Columbia in New York, New Mexico in Albuquerque, Adelaide and Queensland in Australia, the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute in Melbourne in Australia, Natal in Durban South Africa, and McMaster in Canada. Dr. Taylor created a wide network of scholars, experts and scientists most of whom became his dear friends for life because of his open, warm and inclusive nature.

Dr. Taylor brought to St. George’s this lifetime of experience on the front lines of superior academic medicine, coupled with a rare nature filled with inquisitive intelligence and gentle understanding of humans and their institutions. St. George’s was not exactly the academic milieu he was used to. He did not storm into SGU with a series of imperatives for the administration to follow. Because his nature, and hence his management style, was inclusive and embracing, he spent his initial time as Vice Chancellor to discover how, and why, this small band of dedicated people had taken this dream of creating a powerful, excellent medical school and turned it into a successful reality. He discovered the strengths and weaknesses and then very carefully led the administration into expanding that dream. He worked with many others, especially Chancellor Charles Modica, to plan and execute a beautiful and purpose built campus to house the academic dream. Research was one of his top priorities, rightly believing that the study of medicine needs research as a component. His efforts led to the creation of the Windward Island Research and Education Foundation (WINDREF) which in turn brought the St. George’s University name out into the world of scientists and researchers. He guided the University into a graduate program which attracted more faculty and students. He expanded the faculty with recruitment initiatives designed to attract scholars. Dr. Taylor was the driving force behind the creation of the School of Arts and Sciences, developed to aid Grenada and the region in its need for quality tertiary education. The recruitment of international students and partnerships with international institutions was one of his main goals and he pursued this with such dedication and drive that results were seen almost immediately. Today, the University has multiple schools and programs, graduate studies, a respected research program with many international partnerships, a lively and highly qualified faculty, a campus that is the envy of many universities all over the world, international partnerships with educational establishments in many countries, and a student body that hails from over 85 countries.

But to those he left behind at the University, he will be remembered most for his kind and giving nature. He was a gentleman, perhaps the last of the breed. His kindness and humility were legendary. He abhorred pomposity and self-promotion. He would have considered this eulogy, this list of accomplishments (woefully abbreviated as it is) “fulsome,” since his personal quest was always to learn more and know more and he shunned accolades. He had a generosity of spirit that he shared with all. This spirit, coupled with his unfailing intellectual curiosity, turned every conversation, discussion, encounter, every word spoken in passing, into a positive philosophical discussion, pursued with honesty and intelligence. To be with him was to be invited into a world of ideas and kindness. He elevated the everyday discussions at the University as he imbued its academic endeavors with this generous nature and intellectual curiosity. St. George’s University was radically transformed by his gift to us, and we will miss him.

Dr. Taylor died quietly at home, surrounded by his family and friends. He was survived by his four children – Sebastian, Niicholas, Kate, and Daniel – seven grandchildren, and his friend Patricia Staniszewski.

Published on 1/5/07

St. George’s University Announces the Commonwealth-Grenada St. George’s University Scholarship Program (CGSG)

GU is thrilled to further its commitment to education and the developing world through its highly anticipated scholarship program. The Commonwealth-Grenada St. George’s University Scholarship Program will be implemented on January 17, 2007 – the date of the founding of the University 30 years ago. The University will begin to accept applications on this date.

The administration is proud to offer 75 full tuition scholarships over the next few years to qualified students from Commonwealth countries, with preference to students from developing countries and small states. The Commonwealth of Nations is a voluntary association of 53 countries, the majority of which are former colonies of the United Kingdom.

The Commonwealth represents almost a third of the world’s countries. It is primarily an organization in which countries with diverse economic backgrounds have an opportunity for close and equal interaction. Its primary activities are to create an atmosphere of economic co-operation between member nations, as well as promote democracy, human rights and good governance in those nations.

Five scholarship programs – public health, business, medicine, veterinary medicine, and undergraduate degrees in arts and sciences – have been created under the umbrella of the Commonwealth-Grenada St. George’s University Scholarship Program. They will benefit both graduate and undergraduate students who demonstrate academic excellence, financial need and a commitment to their chosen discipline. These scholarship awards will mainly be granted to students from developing countries where the need for trained professionals is great.

A Commonwealth-Grenada St. George’s University Scholarship Committee has been established by the University to award the scholarships. While the $4 million (USD) program will fully fund tuition, students will require separate support for living and traveling expenses. The University will work with the Commonwealth Association to identify businesses and institutions in Commonwealth countries who will sponsor students in return for a promise of serving upon graduation.

Distribution of scholarships is as follows:

Master in Public Health
25 dedicated students will be selected, with special emphasis given to those who will dedicate their professional skills to the public health problems of their home countries. Public health issues in the developing world often involve large scale infectious diseases, which have been almost eradicated in the developed world. In addition, the developing world needs public health professionals dedicated to addressing the health inequalities engendered by the social determinants of health. Poverty, with its attendant problems in inadequate education, health care, sanitation and social support, is at the core of health issues in developing nations. The CGSG scholarships are designed to help battle healthcare through public health.

Doctor of Veterinary Medicine
The 10 CGSG scholarships in veterinary medicine are designed to provide veterinary surgeons for Commonwealth countries in need of more veterinary medical professionals. These veterinary surgeons may be trained to care for wildlife, large animals, herd animals or exotic animals. It is to be expected that they will be imbued with the concept of One Medicine and educated in ways to deal with the transfer of disease between man and animals, which cross international borders on a major scale, causing epidemics of zoonotic diseases.

Doctor of Medicine
The five scholarships in medicine will provide well-trained doctors to enhance health- care delivery in developing nations. This program is designed to stem the “brain drain” from developing to developed countries by training qualified medical doctors who will return home to practice medicine after being immersed in medicine as it is practiced and taught in the Caribbean, the United States and the United Kingdom. These doctors will be well equipped not only to help individual patients, but to contribute to their nation’s healthcare delivery systems as a whole.

Master of Business Administration
The 25 CGSG scholarships in business administration will deliver trained managers who will be able to help developing countries build effective infrastructures in business, industry and government. With an emphasis in the curriculum on international business and entrepreneurial skills and a concentration on public sector management and hotel/tourism management, the MBA degree holders will be well qualified to contribute to the economic development of their countries.

Undergraduate Degrees
The 10 CGSG scholarships in the School of Arts and Sciences are designed to train professionals in a variety of professions that will enhance the business and educational infrastructure of Commonwealth countries, especially developing nations. Degree programs are offered in international business, management information technology, life sciences, and liberal arts.

SGU will maintain strict adherence to its admission requirements which can be found on our website. Admission and scholarship application forms are also available through the website. Applicants will have up to April 15, 2007 to submit applications for the August 2007 class. The deadline for the January 2008 class is September 15, 2007.

Published on 11/10/2006

St. George’s University Undergraduate Enrollment at Record High

The faculty at SGU welcomed 152 new degree seeking undergraduate students in the School of Arts and Sciences (SAS) this past term. This represents a 90 % increase in intake over spring 2006 and a 170% increase over fall last year. The explosion in demand for undergraduate education at SGU has resulted in an almost 60% increase in this subset of the University’s students. This translates to a record high enrollment of 754 SAS undergraduate students, including 200 students enrolled in the premed and veterinary programs.

The University is gratified by both the numbers of new students entering this fall term and their diversified areas of origin. Students in the undergraduate programs have come from 20 countries. The top country represented is Grenada; other countries represented are Austria, Barbados, Botswana, Canada, Dominica, Ghana, Guyana, India, Ireland, Jamaica, Kenya, Lebanon, Nigeria, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, The United States, The United Kingdom, Venezuala, Trinidad and Tobago.

Students in ClassClearly, more students abroad and locally are recognizing the opportunities that exist for them at SGU. There has been a concerted effort by the SGU Admissions Office to share the program offerings of SGU, exploring alternate paths of entry with prospective students, as well as, providing academic/career counseling. This has been executed through School visits, Information Sessions along with attending College and Career Fairs in the various territories.

Focusing much attention on the local level, the University attempts to make tertiary education more accessible to Grenadian students in need by providing substantial scholarships through the Grenadian Undergraduate Scholarship Program (GUSP). Likewise, the University offers the Caricom Undergraduate Scholarship Program (CUSP), which is a need based scholarship available to Caribbean nationals seeking a quality tertiary education. In addition, SGU grants a number of full scholarships for students by agreement with the government of Grenada. The inclusive scholarship programs have played a large part in fuelling the rise of enrollment.

The commitment to tertiary education is echoed by several other countries as well. The Trinidad and Tobago Government has significantly contributed to the increase in Trinidadians attending SGU through its scholarships to Premed and the Higher Education Loan Program (HELP). We are also seeing a growing interest within the OECS territories for an SGU education, which argues well for the future of these small island states. This multi-cultural development in SAS furthers the University’s mission of creating a center of international academic excellence.

students-looking-out-onto-baskerball-courtA continued increase in the size and diversity of the student body is expected, particularly as the academic programs offered expand. The addition of new majors, especially within the Business Department, directly impact the opportunities available to the growing number of students. An example of this is the newly introduced Certificates in Business program, which targets the working population seeking department specific credentials. The onset of the Caribbean Single Market and Economy (CSME), which features the free movement of University graduates and skilled professionals, has also served to increase the demand for tertiary education.

SGU has become a realistic option for many students. According to Colin Dowe, Assistant Dean of Enrolment Planning for Caribbean Admissions, “The work within the community has also increased the profile of the institution and prompted endorsements from some of the national ‘movers and shakers’. The fear of being displaced and/or not being competitive in the job market is one of the fallouts of the CSME and as such more citizens are seeking additional certification. The Trinidadian 20/20 vision aims to have 20% of its population holding first degrees. The Ministry of Education in Grenada will like all secondary school teachers to have an undergraduate degree within the next 8 – 10 years. SGU has an obligation to assist in the delivery of these goals.”

Now, more than ever, the provision of a quality, relevant education in a supportive environment is imperative. It is critical that the University not merely confer degrees but rather prepare regional students for the challenges faced by small businesses and nations competing in this global village. The academic foundation combined with the multiculturalism that is a hallmark of the SGU educational experience are the winning combination that sets SGU apart from other universities.

Published on 010/12/2006

Caribbean Visionary Scholarship Program: A Decade of Excellence

21st century globalization requires access to 21st century education. To further its commitment to raising the educational bar in the Caribbean as the world shrinks, St. George’s University recently launched the Caribbean Visionary Scholarship Program. This program is designed to allow academically gifted Caribbean students a chance to earn an undergraduate degree in SGU’s School of Arts and Sciences. The University has instituted one hundred (100) scholarships to be awarded over the next ten (10) years, beginning in the Spring 2007 semester.

These full and partial scholarships will help many students with high academic achievement reach their potential at University. The Caribbean Visionary Scholarship has been designed to complement the already existing, need-based Caricom Undergraduate Scholarship Program (CUSP) offered by the University.

Students interested in applying should focus on academic excellence and commitment to their chosen profession. Colin Dowe, Assistant Dean of Enrolment Planning, comments, “The Caribbean Visionary Scholarship is an opportunity for Caricom citizens to transform themselves as they achieve a tertiary education and, in turn, to transform the Caribbean with their future endeavors.”

For more information on the Caribbean Visionary Scholarship, please visit the School of Arts and Sciences Financial Aid section of the University website.

Published on 02/28/2006

St. George’s University Launches Masters in Business Administration (MBA) and a Masters in International Business (MIB) Degree Program

Two new graduate programs in business administration were launched this term by SGU’s School of Arts and Sciences: a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) and a Masters in International Business (MIB), which have expanded the growing number of degree programs much needed in Grenada and the region.

Classes for the MBA and MIB programs began on January 16th. The program reached its goal of 50 students for the charter class – all seats were filled. “There is a great diversity in this charter class,” said Colin Dowe, Assistant Dean of Enrolment Planning for Caribbean Admissions. Students have enrolled from Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, St. Vincent, St. Lucia, South Africa, and the US. “It’s terrific that we have seven different nationalities in this class since the focus is on international business and the make-up of the charter class clearly reflects the objectives of the program,” commented Mr. Dowe.

Many of the students in the charter class already own or manage a business or corporation in Grenada. In addition, and adding to the eclectic nature of the student population, other students have backgrounds in computer science, chemistry, pharmacology, and psychology. Four of the students have graduated from the School of Arts and Sciences at SGU and three of them are significant others of students enrolled in a different SGU program. Mr. Dowe feels that, “The amalgamation of experiences will facilitate a rich exchange of ideas in classes and add to the value of their exposure.”

The MBA/MIB classes are offered on a full-time and a part-time basis. Students who enroll full time can complete the MIB in one year or the MBA in two years. Classes are scheduled to accommodate working professionals and students who want to earn dual degrees. There are close to 20 students who have enrolled full-time. A multi-summer, condensed program is being developed which will allow regional professionals to earn an MBA during summer sessions. “There are many top-notch professionals in Grenada and the Caribbean who will benefit from postgraduate training. It has been exciting to implement this program which allows regional business professionals access to a quality, international degree in business administration without having to leave home,” said Michael Cappy, the MBA/MIB program coordinator.

SGU also offered scholarships for all charter class members who started in January 2006, an effort to make education more affordable to regional students. In accordance with the University’s goal of utilizing institutional and regional strengths, concentrations in tourism/hotel management and health administration are being developed. “The first graduate degree programs offered by the School of Arts and Sciences further enhance the reputation of the School and the University,” said Dr. Theodore Hollis, Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences, “We are all excited by this program which has all the earmarks of success.”

“We anticipate that the launch of the MBA\MIB program is just the beginning of our development of this field and we anticipate in the future offering dual MD\MBA and DVM\MBA degree programs here at SGU. This will provide an even wider choice of degree options for our regional and international students in the Schools of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine. For now it is a tremendous achievement to have put together the MBA\MIB program and I would like to congratulate all involved and wish them every success,” said Dr. Cal Macpherson, Dean of Graduate Studies.

Published on 01/27/2006

Record Enrollment for St. George’s University

Enrollment at St. George’s University is at an all time high. The campus is bustling with students from all over the world studying medicine, veterinary medicine, business, information technology, and in many other undergraduate and graduate degree programs.

The entering student population has increased by 6% from last year alone (the 2003-04 academic year). In fact, the total enrollment of the University – slightly over 3,000 students, has increased almost 50% since 1999! The enrollment of new students increased by 55% since the 2001-02 academic year. We have enrolled almost 1,060 students this academic year.

This year, more students have entered the MD program through the premedical program (recently moved into the School of Medicine) than in any year since its inception; there were 22 new students in the program in August, and 40 entered this February – for a total of 62 new students in this academic year. The premedical program allows students from around the world in various educational systems to enter the Doctor of Medicine program.

The Masters of Public Health Program enrolled over 100 students this academic year, maintaining its image as one of the healthiest programs on campus. Over 100 new undergraduate students have entered this year, reaching a four-year high. If we add those students who have entered the baccalaureate degree program through our affiliate, T. A. Marryshow Community College (TAMCC), we have enrolled more than 200 new students this academic year.

The secondary school component of Camp Medicine, 2005 is already oversubscribed, with many more students and student-teacher groups waiting to sign on board.

“The best kept secret in the Caribbean is no longer a secret,” said Margaret Lambert, Dean of Enrolment Planning. “It is gratifying to see so many students from so many places all studying and living together on this beautiful island, which is recovering so well and so quickly from the violence of Hurricane Ivan.”

Published on 03/07/2005

Denis F. Paul, PhD

Denis F Paul PortraitDr. Denis F. Paul, the new Director of Institutional Advancement at the University, is also a professor in the Department of Liberal Studies in the School of Arts and Sciences at St. George’s University.

Dr. Paul is a native of St. David’s, Grenada. After more than 40 years of living in the U.S. and the U.S. Virgin Islands, he returned to Grenada, where he has served as principal of the T. A. Marryshow Community College and as a consultant to the Ministry of Education, the National Insurance Scheme, the Gravel Concrete Emulsion Production Corporation, and the Agency for Rural Transformation.

For eight years prior to returning to Grenada, Dr. Paul was Vice President for Academic Affairs at the University of the Virgin Islands (UVI), where he was responsible for all academic programs, including the graduate and undergraduate degree programs, the libraries, and the Reichhold Center for the Arts.

He also worked as Assistant Commissioner for Higher Education Academic Review for the Regents of New York State, where he was responsible for quality assurance and program evaluation in the 250 colleges and universities in the state. Dr. Paul served the City University of New York as Associate Dean for Academic Programs, and as the Acting President of Medgar Evers College from 1980 to 1982.

Dr. Paul, who has spent more than 30 years in higher education, is an alumnus of Brooklyn College and has a doctorate degree in chemistry from the Graduate School of the City University of New York.

Dr. Paul’s favorite athletic activities are swimming and hiking. He is an accomplished videographer and is competent in the use of the latest digital and computer technology. His video of the Virgin Islands is sold widely in the Virgin Islands. He is married to Kay Simon, and is the father of two children, Thomas Paul and Amelia Seel.

Published on 10/06/2004

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