THE CSME Student Mission is intended to expose students to as much information as possible about the region. According to Gladys Young, Officer in Charge of the CSME Unit, it is a brilliant move to involve tertiary level students in the CSME.
Young explained that the trips provided for the student mission are beneficial because it gives practical experience and not only focuses on the five core regimes of the CSME; but includes the development of various sectors which play a key role in regional integration. Sectors such as consumer protection and regional transportation which fall under the core are examined to help the progression of CSME. Speaking to this work, Young disclosed that the Unit is in the process of developing critical policies and have many on-going projects.
Getting the students fully motivated to embark on their journey was Barbados’ Ambassador to CARICOM, H. E. Ambassador Robert Morris. Before doing so, Morris stated, “I wish to thank Officials of the CARICOM Secretariat for designing and continuing this programme which ensures that our youthful students are given personal opportunities and experiences to help them understand and appreciate the processes and procedures involved in the freedom of movement regimes.”
Turning his focus to the students, the Ambassador told them to see the trip as a great opportunity to see what is happening in the CSME. He advised that if CSME was optimally working, the region would be better off as it allows for opportunities for employment and entrepreneurship. Given this opportunity, Morris further explained that these students will be now tasked in propelling such developments when they return home.
Moreover, in pushing Caribbean unity, Ambassador Morris noted that Caribbean integration has fostered lifelong friendships, mainly through the pursuit of degrees at university; and therefore equal weight or more weight should be allocated to being a citizen of the Caribbean than being a citizen of individual member states.
In giving the students something to look forward to, Morris described his experiences in Jamaica in detail; but also charged that they have an educational, rewarding and persuasive experience so that they may be advocates of CSME when they return.
Approximately nineteen students from Barbados will be going on the trip and are set to leave on April 10th.