News Releases

UWI Business and Tech Students on One-Month Exchange in Japan

For Release Upon Receipt - January 19, 2016


Eight UWI students are currently in Japan participating in a one-month exchange programme at Sophia University. The initiative which is funded by the Japan-based Association for Promotion of International Cooperation (APIC), seeks to promote international cooperation and deepen mutual understanding between Japan and various countries. Two students were selected from each of The UWI’s four campuses and together they are spending the weeks attending courses in Japanese Business and Economy, Media and Contemporary Issues in Japan and Japanese Language.

The students are Shekira Thompson and Quinn Weekes from the Cave Hill Campus in Barbados, Dane Miller and Raphaella Colahar from the Mona Campus in Jamaica, Denecia Campbell and Ricky Haynes from the Open Campus Sites in Monserrat and St Vincent and the Grenadines and Kimberly Browne and Aaron Sookram from the St Augustine Campus in Trinidad and Tobago.

Part of a wider cooperation programme between CARICOM and Japan, the initiative also includes a memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed in September 2015 by UWI Vice-Chancellor, Professor Sir Hilary Beckles and President of Sophia University, Takashi Hayashita. The MOU is aimed at improving bilateral relationships that will enhance research and education at both institutions. It is also intended to expand the spectrum of academic collaboration and cultural awareness between the universities.

Commenting on the signing of the MOU with Sophia, Vice-Chancellor Beckles drew a clear alignment between the and his leadership vision for The UWI as a Caribbean university saying, "Establishing strong linkages with partner institutions, especially those with similar strategic thrusts as ours, augers well for enabling the level of economic turnaround and wealth generation that the Caribbean so desperately needs. With partners like Sophia University, we are taking UWI closer to becoming a global brand of education".

The students left for Japan on January 3rd, are expected to return to their respective countries on January 30th where they resume Semester II classes at The UWI.  



About Sophia University

Sophia University, a pioneer of international education in Japan, was founded in the heart of Tokyo by the Jesuits in 1913. With its motto “Sophia – Bringing the World Together” the University has been attracting faculty and students from all over the world and has grown to be one of the foremost of Japan’s private universities. It has 9 undergraduate faculties with 29 departments, and 10 graduate schools with 27 programs including humanities, social sciences and natural sciences and engineering. It has 13,000 undergraduate and graduate students and has teaching staff of more than 1,000. Sophia’s student and academic exchange partners count up to 246 institutions in 49 countries. The University has been selected for the government-led programs, “Top Global University Project” and just recently the “Re-inventing Japan Project 2015” planned to enhance the partnership with universities in Latin America and the Caribbean.


About The UWI

Since its inception in 1948, The University of the West Indies (UWI) has evolved from a fledgling college in Jamaica with 33 students to a fully-fledged, regional University with over 50,000 students. Today, The UWI is the largest, most longstanding higher education provider in the Commonwealth Caribbean, with three physical campuses in Barbados, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, and an Open Campus. The UWI serves 17 English-speaking countries and territories in the Caribbean: Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, The Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, The British Virgin Islands, The Cayman Islands, Dominica, Grenada, Jamaica, Montserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, and Turks and Caicos. The UWI’s faculty and students come from more than 40 countries and The University has collaborative links with 160 universities globally; it offers undergraduate and postgraduate degree options in Food and Agriculture, Engineering, Humanities and Education, Law, Medical Sciences, Science and Technology and Social Sciences. The UWI’s seven priority focal areas are linked closely to the priorities identified by CARICOM and take into account such over-arching areas of concern to the region as environmental issues, health and wellness, gender equity and the critical importance of innovation.

(Please note that the proper name of the university is The University of the West Indies, inclusive of the “The”, hence The UWI.)