The University of the West Indies (UWI) today (January 6) announced a raft of activities to celebrate its 75th anniversary this year.
The celebrations, being held under the theme “UWI at 75, rooted, ready, rising” include award ceremonies, academic seminars, sports and cultural events, research showcases, benefit gala events and scholarships, all scheduled for each campus and every supporting territory of UWI.
“We have much in which to be proud. We have much to celebrate …This 75th year will sizzle with regional activities”, said UWI Vice Chancellor Professor Sir Hillary Beckles in his remarks at the launch held in-person and virtually.
Describing UWI’s 75 years of existence as “a success as a fine global university rooted in Caribbean civilization”, Prof Beckles said this success was possible “as a result of persistent and dedicated funding as a public university by the governments of the region”.
The UWI is funded in part by 17 governments across the Caribbean.
Meanwhile, January 7 will be observed as UWI Day, which was the day in 1943 on which the decision was made to allocate lands at Mona, St Andrew, to establish the first UWI campus.
A year later, the first batch of 33 students was admitted to study medicine at UWI, Mona.
UWI is currently ranked among the top 1.5 per cent of universities globally.
UWI Chancellor Robert Bermudez, in his remarks, noted that since its establishment the UWI has prepared more than 250,000 graduates from a wide spectrum of disciplines.
“Our academics have produced a significant body of sterling research that has informed policy at the national and regional levels. I believe the UWI has lived up to its promise. However, much more can be done, and must be done”, Bermudez said.
The first event in the 75th-anniversary celebrations is an Interfaith Convocation Service to be held at the UWI Chapel on the Mona campus on Sunday afternoon.
The UWI has also established a website featuring the calendar of events and is inviting alumni and staff to produce branded merchandise for the anniversary celebrations.