News Releases

Seven to receive UWI Vice Chancellorís Award for Excellence

For Release Upon Receipt - June 9, 2011

St. Augustine

The University of the West Indies (UWI) will recognize the outstanding contributions of seven members of staff at its 2011 Vice Chancellor’s Award for Excellence on October 5, 2011 at the St. Augustine Campus.  Vice Chancellor, Professor E. Nigel Harris will present the prestigious awards to this year’s recipients Professors Kathleen Coard, Minerva Thame, Anthony Clayton and Mrs Eda Martin of the Mona Campus; Dr. Anna-May Edwards-Henry and Professor Vijay Narayansingh, St. Augustine Campus, and Professor Julie Meeks Gardner of the Open Campus.

Professor of Pathology, Kathleen Coard will receive the award for Teaching while two awards each will be presented in the categories Research Accomplishments and Service to the University Community. Awardees in the Research category are Professor Minerva Thame, Head, Department of Child Health, Mona, and Professor Vijay Narayansingh of the Department of Surgery, St. Augustine, while Dr. Anna-May Henry, Director of the Instructional Development Unit at St. Augustine and Mrs. Eda Martin, Manager Customer Service, Office of Finance, Mona will be recognized for outstanding service to the University. Director of the Institute for Sustainable Development, Professor Anthony Clayton will be awarded in the category Public Service and Professor Julie Meeks-Gardner who heads the Open Campus’ Caribbean Child Development Centre will receive the award for All-round Performance in two categories: Research Accomplishments and Public Service.

Professor Kathleen Coard is the first female graduate of The UWI’s Medical DM (Pathology) programme to become a Professor of Pathology. She has been attached to UWI as a Lecturer in Pathology since 1984, is a founding member of the Jamaica branch of Teaching Improvement Project Systems (TIPS), a former Chair of the Department of Pathology Examination Review Committee and is Chief Editor for the end of module Final Examination Papers for BMedSci and MBBS students in the Faculty of Medical Sciences. She has participated in numerous professional workshops on curriculum development, and conducted staff training workshops with TIPS and the Instructional Development Unit. Professor Coard has over 60 publications in internationally recognized journals. Her research is dedicated to the understanding and treating of prostate cancer and soft tissue tumours and she has received more than six medical awards, including the Jamaica Medical Foundation award in 2009 for outstanding achievement in the fields of pathology and research. Professor Coard was also the winner of the Anthony N. Sabga Caribbean Award for Excellence (ANSCAFE) in 2010 and is currently President of the Jamaican Association of Clinical Pathologists (JACP).

An esteemed surgeon in Trinidad and Tobago, Professor Vijay Narayansingh has received numerous awards for his contributions to the field of medicine. He is the founder of the first regular vascular surgery service at the Port of Spain General Hospital and also established renal transplantation in Trinidad. Professor Narayansingh is currently the medical director of a voluntary project with the Rotary Club of St. Augustine which aims to provide and fit prostheses to amputees free of charge. Professor Narayansingh’s vast body of research on vascular surgery has been published in over 100 international medical journals.

Professor Minerva Thame has attained international recognition for her publications and research which focus on the area of maternal nutrition and its impact on foetal growth and birth outcome. She received The UWI Principal’s Award for the Most Outstanding Researcher in the Faculty of Medical Sciences for the academic years 2007/2008 and 2009/2010, an award from the Jamaica Medical Foundation for outstanding contribution in the field of Child Health and The Paul Harris Fellow Award from the Rotary Club of New Kingston in 2009.

Professor Anthony Clayton is the Alcan Professor of Caribbean Sustainable Development at the Institute for Sustainable Development at UWI. He has served as the lead policy advisor for both the Fifth Summit of the Americas and the Commonwealth Heads of Government meetings held in Trinidad and Tobago in 2009. Additionally, Professor Clayton has served on the Squatter Management Committee of the Ministry of Housing, Jamaica, where he was the lead author of the Committee’s report which set out a proposed new policy for the management of informal settlements. Professor Clayton has also served in an advisory capacity to the UK Government Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit and Foreign Commonwealth Office on policy options for the Caribbean as well as the European Commission. For his service and leadership excellence, Professor Clayton has been honoured with the 8th World Congress of Consuls Award of Excellence.

Dr. Anna-May Edwards-Henry has provided invaluable administrative service to The UWI. She is directly responsible for operations of the Instructional Development Unit and as a member of the Academic Quality Assurance Committee (AQAC) reviews the courses and programmes offered by The UWI. She created the Master in Higher Education: Tertiary Level Teaching and Learning, co-produced the Assessment Essentials Handbook with the heads of IDUs from the other campuses and reviewed, revamped and revitalized the Student Evaluation of Courses and Lectures (SECL). Dr. Henry has published numerous papers on teaching/education evaluation and assessment.

Mrs. Eda Martin has been with the University since her appointment as Executive Secretary to the Director of Finance/University Bursar in 1993. She was directly involved with the restructuring of the Office of Finance and in conjunction with the University’s Bursars co-ordinated the first workshops on the Financial Code and the Financial Procedures and Guidelines. The UWI alumna is a holder of an MSc in Resource Development who has provided administrative support to The UWI’s Grants Committee and Taskforce on Capital Development Needs. At present, Mrs. Martin manages meetings of the Technical Advisory Committees (TACs) and the Campus and University Grants Committees (CGC & UGC) among other core duties. She has also been involved with the UWI Mentorship Programme since 2006.

Current head of the Open Campus’ Caribbean Child Development Centre Professor Julie Meeks-Gardner is a widely published UWI academic who specializes in Child Development and Nutrition.  She is also a former member of the Board of Childwatch International, a network of research organizations that focus on children and children’s issues; the UWI representative on the CARICOM Working Group on Early Childhood and a member of the Executive of the Jamaican National Food and Nutrition Coordinating Committee. Professor Meeks-Gardner is a founding member of the Children’s Issues Coalition, a group of academics at UWI who are striving to enable more integrated research, teaching, outreach services and dissemination of research findings, in areas related to children.  The group is responsible for Caribbean Childhoods: Documenting the Reality, a database of research on children’s issues which has obtained grants worth over JA$2.2 million from the Environmental Foundation of Jamaica.  The Children’s Issues Coalition also produces an annual journal entitled Caribbean Childhoods, for which they have obtained a US$15,000 grant from UNICEF.  

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About the Vice Chancellor’s Award for Excellence

The annual Vice Chancellor’s Award for Excellence was initiated in 1993 by former UWI Vice Chancellor, Sir Alister McIntyre, to recognize high achievement by academic as well as senior administrative staff. As many as eight awards may be given in any one year – five to academic staff and three to senior administrative staff. The Award categories are Teaching, Administration and Research Accomplishments, Service to the University Community, Contributions to Public Service and an award for All-round Excellence in a combination of two or more of the four core areas. Each award is valued at US$5,000.

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.


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