Panellists of the Barbados Youth Development Council’s Town Hall Meeting were Barbados Association of Future Office Professional’s Dia Parris; Leader of Government Business, Barbados National Youth Parliament, Krystal Hoyte; CARICOM Youth Ambassador, Female Alternate, Kaila Headley; Co-director of the Barbados Gays, Lesbians and All-Sexuals Against Discrimination (BGLAD), Ro-Ann Mohammed and Founder of I Am A Girl Barbados, Alian Ollivierre.
Youth have their say on education
A call has been made for more scholarships to be awarded to youth pursuing studies in technical fields.
It was one of the suggestions made during the Barbados Youth Development Council (BYDC) Town Hall Meeting, as solutions were offered about ways to bring about change in the local educational system.
The topic of education was amongst the several areas discussed during the Meeting on Friday, held in the Training Room, Ministry of Culture, Sports and Youth.
“I find that we are still in the mentality of the doctor type, lawyer type system, and this is going to continue to hurt us. We need to look around to see which fields are really growing. We need to look around and see where we can actually invest more money and actually bring up the persons who are there trying in technical fields.
“Quite too often you hear it on the radio, you hear it all over the place, ‘if you are a doctor, if you are a lawyer’... there is still that kind of mentality. We have to change that. We need to change the focus of where we recognise and recommend persons at that level, and the first place to start would be scholarships,” stated the CARICOM Youth Ambassador, Male, Shamar Ward.
Also offering a solution was Founder of I Am A Girl Barbados, Alian Ollivierre, who stated that within the “educational system itself, there needs to be more transitional programmes within the school on a mainstream scale”.
Meanwhile, President of the Barbados Youth Development Council (BYDC), Kimberley Norville, suggested that banks needed to adjust their loan policies to better able to cater to students.
“Banks probably need to change their policies in regards to Student of Loans, because a lot of them seem to be using it just as an avenue to get money, because they know that for education you have the high interest rates. So you need to see lowered interest rates and a relaxation in the ways that you can get a loan, because as one of the panellists said, not everybody has collateral.”
The theme for the Town Hall Meeting was ‘Ask We Bajan Youth’, and it was held in observance of International Youth Day. Norville said it was held to provide youth with an avenue to openly share their views on a number of societal issues.
“With youth, a lot of the time we are hearing negative stuff. So we wanted to have something where it is like a positive atmosphere, a positive forum highlighting youth wanting to get out there, wanting to lead, wanting to push for change [and] how they want the country [to] move forward in terms of youth development. And also we are firm believers at the Council that the youth are the future. The innovation, the ingenuity of the youth is what is going to build the future of this nation.”
The night’s moderator was Corey Lane, while representatives on the panel were the Barbados Association of Future Office Professional’s Dia Parris; Leader of Government Business, Barbados National Youth Parliament, Krystal Hoyte; CARICOM Youth Ambassador, Female Alternate, Kaila Headley; Co-director of the Barbados Gays, Lesbians and All-Sexuals Against Discrimination (BGLAD), Ro-Ann Mohammed and Founder of I Am A Girl Barbados, Alian Ollivierre. (MG)