ST JOHN’S, Antigua – The economic decline may have put paid to many people’s dreams of pursuing higher education.
So for six driven Antiguan women recently given scholarships to enable them to follow their dreams, the celebrations were all the more significant.
The ladies, aged between 18 and 50, are living proof that hard work and persistence can reap major benefits in the battle to get ahead.
Yesterday their efforts were officially recognised at a special awards ceremony to formally present them with the scholarships funded by the International Women’s Club (IWC).
The non-profit organisation raises cash each year to dish out around $30,000 in grants to hard-working local women seeking tertiary qualifications.
Guest speaker Senator Joanne Massiah told those assembled that the “journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.”
Fifty-year-old Yvonne Solomon, a teacher at St John’s Catholic Primary School, is studying for an associate degree in social work at the UWI campus in St John’s.
“This will prove very beneficial to me,” she told OBSERVER Media. “I am delighted to be able to give something back to the community.”
Single parent Jhavline Montoban, 26, from Golden Grove, said the scholarship meant the world to her, as it would allow her to complete her online Masters degree in general management. She is due to graduate in October.
Another recipient is 20-year-old Simara Anthony of Old Road Village. She will be pursuing an online Masters degree and hopes to become an ambassador for Antiguan business.
Inland Revenue auditor, 33-year-old Keva Martin of Willikies, will also be seeking to attain a Masters degree to help upgrade and modernise governmental operations.
Eighteen-year-old Rosalie Richards, from Crosbies, is working towards a BSC in economics and management at UWI Cave Hill, which she hopes will help her reach her goal of becoming a market research analyst.
For Ministry of Education worker, Cynthia Crump-Russell, the scholarship will further her skills in assisting Antiguan youngsters with dyslexia and special needs.
Since 1992, IWC has made tertiary education possible for scores of local ladies, raising total funds topping $500,000.
(More in today’s Daily OBSERVER)