Deadline for scholarships is extended
The deadline for applications for education ministry scholarships and awards has been extended to April 5.
Diallo Rabain, the Minister of Education and Workforce Development, said the move would give students “more time during their school break to gather all the documents required for the application”. He encouraged students to apply for “all offerings listed”.
Mr Rabain said that Bermudian students would benefit from scholarships and awards worth $1.2 million.
He said that it was “critical to understand that scholarships and awards change lives”.
Mr Rabain explained: “They can make a difference in whether or not students actually complete their studies or even have the lifetime opportunity to attend college or university.
“We know that investing in our children’s education today will pay huge dividends in the future for Bermuda’s social and economic capital.”
Mr Rabain said the cash would benefit “a diverse range of Bermudians”.
He said that added focus had been given to “underserved and underrepresented persons of all ages”. Mr Rabain said: “Embedded in this work is an effort to reduce barriers, whether social or financial.”
He said that the scholarships and awards were available to a “range of students”, including high achievers from public and private schools, students already enrolled in study, students in technical and vocational subjects and students with disabilities.
Mr Rabain said that expanded funding would allow for four dual-enrolment students in the applied technology programme at Bermuda College.
He said the scholarships would allow students to complete their studies “at no cost”.
Mr Rabain said the ministry had also recently introduced awards to cover the cost of books up to $500 each for ten Bermuda College students in need.
Patricia Gordon-Pamplin, One Bermuda Alliance MP, pointed out that grants and scholarships had decreased when compared to the revised estimates for the year 2017-18.
She said the grants under the Ministry of Education and Workforce Development headquarters for 2017-18 were originally listed as $1.737 million.
But she said the revised estimate showed an increase in grants to external bodies to $1.774 million.
Ms Gordon-Pamplin explained: “So when we look at that $1,774,000 as against what we are anticipating for 2018-19, there actually is a decrease of $37,000.”
She pointed out that the teacher training awards had dropped down to $60,000 from the revised estimate of $142,000.
Ms Gordon-Pamplin said: “That is a significant decrease of $82,000 on a line item that in and of itself did not seem particularly adequate.”
She said $115,000 was earmarked to mature student awards in 2017-18 and “that has gone back down to $90,000, which was the original estimate”.
Ms Gordon-Pamplin said: “You cannot on the one hand criticise someone saying ‘you don’t care’, when on the other hand, you are showing that your numbers are down based on what you physically revised your estimates to be on the prior year.
“When we hear about a travesty, then that certainly would be one that would pique my attention.”
Ms Gordon-Pamplin also said Ministry of Education and Workforce Development scholarships had an original estimate of $525,000 on the 2017-18 financial year. The revised estimate went up by $370,000.
She added: “It is difficult to understand how the minister can have spent such an incredible amount of time criticising the fact that nobody cares and then drop your scholarships by $370,000.”
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