Mico alumni group donates $1.2 million in scholarships

December 5, 2021 0 comments Dr. Marston Thomas, PhD, JP Categories Updates

KINGSTON, Jamaica— A group of Mico University College past students who go by the moniker 'The 146th' recently donated $1.2million to assist 12 students with their tuition and other costs.

According to a statement from the university, members of the batch who attended the University College from 1981 to 1984, mobilised last year at the onset of the coronavirus pandemic to provide financial aid and made a donation of $1 million to 10 students in 2020.

This year, they have been able to increase the total by $200,000 and the number of beneficiaries by two. Each recipient will receive a total of $100,000.00.

''For varying reasons, including the impact of the pandemic, these families could not continue to provide their tuition and without this help, students would not have been able to complete their studies,'' the statement said.

Donovan Henry, a founding member of the group who spoke from overseas, said the school had greatly impacted their lives and increased "the need to pay it forward to the current students."

“We came to the Mico with uncertainty, we came to the Mico with youthful frivolity, we came to the Mico with limitations. Mico gave us agency over our destiny, Mico gave us maturity and visionary clarity,” he said.

He continued, “Mico taught us to be bold in our intentions and our interactions. Mico gave us something so substantial and consequential then it changed the trajectory of our lives forever. That is why we have come to give back and we do so with gratitude and with humility.”

Recipients of The Mico University College, 146 Batch Tuition Award Ray-Jay Thompson (front, left) and Donice Gardener (front, right). From left are: Director of Alumni Development Sharon Bouges Wolfe, Dr Vivienne Pitter, Natalie Ferreira-Reid, Hope Evans Wilson, Maxine Lawrence, Mico University College President Dr Asburn Pinnock (far right). Back row: Everaldo Orr, Holmer Morgan, Brian Phillpotts-Brown and Nola Phillpotts-Brown. (Photo contributed)

“Whenever I meet a Miconian or someone who has been impacted by the Mico I keep reflecting on the fact that we continue to turn out students such as you [who give back]. To my recipients, I hope you are watching and taking note of what is happening because that is the hallmark of a Miconian, the drive to give back. Community and service is very important,” he added.

Two of the scholarship recipients spoke on behalf of the 12 beneficiaries.

Donice Gardener, a final year student majoring in business education said that the scholarship will remove the pressure from her grandmother who has been bearing the financial burden of sending her to school.

“My grandmother works every day as a domestic helper to help pay for my education, and because of this scholarship, she will be able to rest and focus more on herself,” Gardener said.

Ray-Jay Thompson, a third year special education major cited that the scholarship will ease the burden on both himself and his family.

“Being a recipient of the Batch of 146 Scholarship is a big moment for me because with this scholarship I will be able to fully focus on my studies and continue to participate in extracurricular activities. My mother could cease the borrowing of loans to pay my tuition because of this scholarship,” he said.

Nola Phillpotts-Brown, chair of the fundraising committee said that the group hopes to make an impact on the lives of the current students.

“We hope to change some lives, change the trajectory. Many of the students indicated that they did not have the funds to pay because their parents had lost their jobs as a result of downsizing,'' she said.

Phillpotts-Brown said that 100 people make up the Batch of 146 Scholarship donors and they intend to continue to make these donations on a yearly basis.

OBSERVER NEWS CENTRE
Credit to original article from The Jamaica Observer, titled similarly, dated 3-Dec-2021.