Faculty of Law of The University of the West Indies (The UWI) St. Augustine Campus aims to create lawyers who will be meaningful change agents within the Caribbean. It is doing so through the Makandal Daaga Scholarship in Law.
About the Makandal Daaga Scholarship
The Makandal Daaga Scholarship is an equal opportunity scholarship open to CARICOM nationals of any age, race or gender. Applicants must have a discernible record of advocating for positive social change in their communities through work on issues of justice, equality, or democracy, whether in an NGO, governmental, regional, or individual capacity. Although the admission standards are not as stringent as those for the Faculty of Law degree programme, applicants must satisfy the matriculation requirements of The University of the West Indies.
Makandal Daaga Scholarship’s first recipient – Mr. Kareem Marcelle
Kareem Marcelle, the first recipient of the Makandal Daaga Scholarship in Law (2017), is encouraging everyone involved in activism in the Caribbean to apply for the scholarship, “Even if you feel disheartened that law may be too hard, I am telling you that once you reach here this Faculty is helpful in helping you achieve these goals; if you work with them, they will work with you . . . If you know that you have been working hard continuously for your community and it does not have to be a physical community, it could be a community of so many different diasporas of persons and groups that you would want to fight for . . . a law degree can definitely help you to make that one step closer to achieve that”.
Makandal Daaga Scholarship’s second recipient – Miss Suana Sookdeo
Suana Sookdeo, a community activist and National Youth Awards nominee from Chaguanas, is the winner of the 2020/2021 Makandal Daaga Scholarship in Law. Sookdeo is an artist and activist who works at the community and national level. She is a poet and spoken word performer who advocates against gender-based violence, working with the Ministry of Gender and Youth Affairs. In 2015, she was nominated for the National Youth Awards in the Art and Culture category for her poem, “Violence Against Women”. A year earlier, Sookdeo took part in the National Children’s Forum.
Speaking on her reaction to having won the scholarship, she says: “I was overwhelmed with happiness. It was a very exciting moment for my family and me, being the first one to pursue law at The University of the West Indies.” Sookdeo’s work in Chaguanas, where she tutored students, visited homes for the elderly and took part in charity drives, garnered commendation from the Chaguanas Borough Corporation, who stated she “is a very hardworking and dedicated individual, who is actively involved in community work and has a wonderful rapport with people of all ages, children in particular.”
Speaking of her goals in accessing the scholarship, Sookdeo says she will use it to “help those that are less fortunate, to be their voice, to advocate against domestic violence, and fight against injustice and inequality in my society.”
How to apply
Interested persons must include in their application an essay of no more than 350 words describing their work and activism and explaining how earning a law degree will enhance this work. To be considered, applicants must also satisfy at least the minimum matriculation requirements of The University of the West Indies.
To submit application please visit https://sta.uwi.edu/apply
To submit essay please visit firstname.lastname@example.org
About Makandal Daaga
Makandal Daaga, social activist, spearheaded the ‘Black Power Movement’ in Trinidad and Tobago. His lifelong work focused on the central tenets of Law – Equality, Social Justice, Fairness.
Kareem Marcelle, the first recipient of the Makandal Daaga Scholarship in Law (2017)
Makandal Daaga Scholarship in Law winner Suana Sookdeo