News Releases

UWI Institute of International Relations (IIR) hosts Commonwealth Day Celebration

For Release Upon Receipt - March 8, 2010

St. Augustine

St Augustine Campus joins global community in celebrating Science and Technology


The University of the West Indies (UWI) Institute of International Relations (IIR) will host the Commonwealth Day Celebration 2010 on Monday 8th March, 2010 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Centre for Language Learning (CLL) First Floor Auditorium.


The Celebration will include an interactive presentation on the history of the Imperial College of Tropical Agriculture, as well as three presentations on science and technology by Mrs Yasmin Comeau, Mr Simeon Sandiford and Dr David Mc Gaw.


His Excellency Mr Malay Mishra, The Indian High Commissioner, and Nigerian-born Professor Funso Aiyejina, Dean of the Faculty of Humanities and Education, are among the guest speakers carded to make special presentations in a brief reception to follow, at the IIR Lecture Room 1 (First Floor). Professor Aiyejina won the Commonwealth Writers Prize for First Book of Africa, 2000. The Commonwealth Scholars Alumni are also expected to mount a display in the IIR Staff lounge highlighting science and technology in action in “satellite farming”.


The Commonwealth is a voluntary association of 54 countries that support each other and work together towards shared goals in democracy and development. The world’s largest and smallest, richest and poorest countries make up the Commonwealth and are home to two billion citizens of all faiths and ethnicities – over half of whom are 25 or under. Member countries span six continents and oceans from Africa (19) to Asia (8), the Americas (2), the Caribbean (12), Europe (3) and the South Pacific (10). Every year, on the second Monday in March, people all around the Commonwealth get together to celebrate the special partnership of nations, peoples and ideals which makes the Commonwealth unique. This year, Commonwealth Day is on March 8th.

Commonwealth Day 2010 is about raising awareness in the Commonwealth around issues of science and development. Science and technology are central to society and fundamental to human development. In today's world they underpin communication, commerce, arts and culture, health, wealth and human rights. At the Kampala Commonwealth People's Forum in 2007, the Commonwealth called for renewed commitment to science and technology.

According the official Commonwealth Day 2010 website (, the theme of science and technology “will remind Commonwealth institutions that science underpins economic and social progress, and that access to technology is fundamental to equitability and the implementation of democracy. Science can help to address poor governance through improved accountability and monitoring. It is fundamental to appropriate policy-making in use of natural resources such as forests, fisheries, or in planning waste management, water supply, sanitation and environmental health. Science and technology contribute to wealth creation and poverty eradication, and good health provision.

For more information on this IIR Commonwealth Day Celebration, please contact The Marketing & Communications Office at (868) 662-2002 Ext. 2013, 2014.


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About UWI

Over the last six decades, The University of the West Indies (UWI) has evolved from a fledgling college in Jamaica with 33 students to a full-fledged University with over 40,000 students. Today, UWI is the largest and most longstanding higher education provider in the English-speaking Caribbean, with main campuses in Barbados, Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago, and Centres in Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, The Bahamas, Belize, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Grenada, Montserrat, St Christopher (St Kitts) & Nevis, St Lucia, and St Vincent & the Grenadines. UWI recently launched its Open Campus, a virtual campus with over 50 physical site locations across the region, serving over 20 countries in the English-speaking Caribbean. UWI is an international university with faculty and students from over 40 countries and collaborative links with over 60 universities around the world. Through its seven Faculties, UWI offers undergraduate and postgraduate degree options in Engineering, Humanities & Education, Law, Medical Sciences, Pure & Applied Sciences, Science and Agriculture, and Social Sciences.