Queen’s College (QC) has taken the lion’s share of Government scholarships and exhibitions.
There were 27 scholars and 36 exhibition winners among students who excelled in the Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examinations (CAPE) and in an Associate Degree at the Barbados Community College (BCC).
Sixteen Queen’s College students received scholarships, while 17 students were awarded exhibitions.
From Harrison College, ten students were awarded with scholarships, and ten got exhibitions.
One BCC student was awarded a scholarship.
The St Michael School received seven exhibitions, and one exhibition was awarded to a Christ Church Foundation student.
In 2017, 26 scholarships were awarded, while there were 25 in 2018. There were 19 exhibitions in 2017 and 34 in 2018.
As Minister of Education Santia Bradshaw congratulated the awardees for their hard work and commended their teachers, she said she was “pleased to see the numbers [of awards] have increased”.
She told a presentation ceremony at Erdiston Teachers Training College this afternoon: “We have been consistent as well in the award of the scholarships and exhibitions.
“As a Government we believe in investment in education and I think these [results] are testimony to tertiary education being free.
“It is also a testimony that we will continue to support those who excel in these areas and we have also made the commitment to ensure that the technical and vocational areas are acknowledged as well.”
The Minister also urged the winners to give back to their country when they have completed their studies.
Bradshaw noted that after Government made an investment in the careers of the Barbadians, many of them have not returned from overseas.
Traditionally, winners of the taxpayer-funded academic awards were bonded to return to Barbados for a legally specified period.
But in the previous administration, then education minister Ronald Jones indicated the Government’s intention to abolish the bond, though no action was announced.
But Minister Bradshaw indicated that the scholars could contribute to Barbados from abroad
She said: “We want to be able to encourage you to find ways to give back to Barbados.
“And giving back doesn’t necessarily mean you have to come back. It may mean you might have to pay back.
“But it also means that in your respective fields of your chosen careers, that you have to be thinking about Barbados.
“And thinking about Barbados not just as a place where you come back to vacation, but somewhere where this country needs to be able to continue to help those in need.
“So whatever you do, do not forget the foundation because it is really key that you remember us and that you are prepared as you go on in your respective careers to be able to find a way to give back to this country that has laid the foundation and given you the platform to be able to go on to your respective universities and to your respective careers.”