December 2018

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From the Principal: Take back the Light

For 70 years, The UWI has been the light shining over our Caribbean. We have walked with leaders, with business, and civic society as we forged a way forward through colonialism, independence, economic downturns, and global engagement.

Who would have imagined back in 1948 that the 2019 “Times Higher Education” World University Rankings would place The UWI among the world’s top institutions? Our regional University is among the 1,258 top universities for 2019 – an elite band of the top 5% worldwide, based on data which show that there are over 25,000 recognized universities globally. Of no small note, is the fact that your UWI is the only Caribbean institution on this world-wide list.

Our faculty, staff, students, graduates and pioneers, along with every consecutive generation, have stayed the course and kept their eyes on the goal: to advance learning, create knowledge and foster innovation for positive transformation. Our graduates dot the global landscape, too numerous to mention, and have made significant differences in the world.

In those seven decades, there has been progress but we acknowledge there should have been more.

Scroll through our archives and the perennial problems still exist – crime, poverty, gender discrimination, and underdevelopment. We can add to that growing list – climate change and increasingly destructive natural disasters, drugs, financial markets, energy crises, terrorism, poor governance, education, demographics, health care, food nutrition and security.

As economic uncertainties continue, we remain committed to creating an innovative and entrepreneurial university and being a vital partner to Caribbean Governments, industry, and the international community so as to secure regional sustainable development. This is not a task for the faint-hearted and this goal – mission! – can only be achieved in a spirit of cooperation and collaboration.

This region’s future depends on the creation of a strong culture of innovation in the economy, in our ecology, and in our society. We must grasp the possibilities within us and use our knowledge and our intellectual potential to build partnerships for creating initiatives and policies that will make our economies more internationally competitive, forge a much more comfortable, nurturing and mature Caribbean society, and protect and preserve our environment for future generations. We must have a firm belief in ourselves and an even firmer belief that, particularly in this technological age, there is absolutely no limit to what we can achieve.

Every year, young, bright graduates enter our places of work in the private and public sector. Our success in the next 70 years will depend in no small way on the success of these young people.

The Caribbean is home to a diversity of cultures and religions that all project light, hope and renewal in the latter half of the year. At this time when Christmas lights surround, enthral and engage us, The UWI must, now more than ever, take full responsibility for carrying the torch in the ongoing fight against the looming darkness.

Professor Brian Copeland
Pro-Vice Chancellor and Principal


Campus Principal: Professor Brian Copeland
Director of Marketing and Communications (Ag): Mrs Wynell Gregorio
Editor : Vaneisa Baksh (

Contact us:
The UWI Marketing and Communications Office
Tel: (868) 662-2002 exts. 82013, 83997