A total of 198 awards were offered to Bermuda College students in financial need during the 2018-2019 academic year.
Updating MPs on the Government Grant for the 2018-2019 school year, Education Minister Diallo Rabain said: “These awards ranged from $233 to $8,600 with the higher amounts awarded to students enrolled in the Bachelor of Business Administration degree programme offered in partnership with Mount Saint Vincent University and students enrolled in the teacher certification programme offered by the University of West Indies.
The $300,000 grant was implemented in 2017.
“The Spring 2019 semester commenced in January. A total of sixty-six (66) students were awarded grants in the academic divisions. However, no awards were granted by the PACE Division this semester, as the allocated funding to PACE was all utilized during the Fall semester,” said Mr Rabain.
“Reflecting over the past two years, during the 2017/18 academic year 313 students were financially supported. This current academic year 198 students received funding, giving a total of five hundred and eleven (511) awards granted to students who ordinarily would not have had the monies to support their tertiary education at the Bermuda College.
“These students included those who did not meet the Bermuda College’s Financial Aid criteria but demonstrated a need for financial support, particularly non-traditional students enrolled in the PACE Division of which many work a job during the day and attend classes in the evening.
“The funding also supported students who received limited funding through Bermuda College’s Financial Aid package; thus, providing financial aid more reflective of the student’s actual need.
“This Government was determined to increase the accessibility to Bermuda College for students in financial need and this is what we have done; in addition to helping to augment student enrollment,” said the Minister.
“The Bermuda College has expressed appreciation for the additional funding during the past two years, and is grateful that the Government has seen fit to continue the funding for the upcoming 2019-2020 fiscal year.
The $300,000 funding initiative is used to financially assist students enrolled in three categories of study:
i) Non-programme and programme academic division courses
ii) Professional and Career Education (PACE) programmes. Students enrolled in these programmes have not previously received financial support; and
iii) Bachelor degree programmes offered through the Bermuda College
“New students who demonstrate a financial need, and current students earning a grade point average (GPA) of 2.00 or higher are eligible to receive financial support. The financial awards have ranged from 30% to 80% of a student’s educational costs, with the educational costs defined as the total value of the tuition programme plus fees,” said Mr Rabain.
“You may remember that during the Fall 2018 semester, one hundred and thirty-two (132) students received a total of $223,431. Sixty-two (62) students registered in the Academic Divisions while seventy (70) students registered with the Division for Professional and Career Education (PACE). There were thirty-three (33) students in the PACE Division who enrolled in the Bachelors of Business Administration degree in partnership with Mount Saint Vincent University, and six (6) enrolled in the teacher certification programme offered in partnership with the University of West Indies. These awards ranged from $233 to $8,600 with an average award of $1,693 for the semester.”
Mr Rabain concluded: “The Government is committed in seeing an increase in the number of Bermudians acquire a post-secondary educational qualification; and will continue to lead the way in demonstrating the value of achieving a higher level education to further lend to the economic landscape of this country.”