Conclusion of Sir Hilary Beckles’ Keynote Address at CTO’s 6th Annual Tourism HR Conf. “History as Signpost for New Way”

{Cont’d} The Principal of the Cave Hill Campus noted how USA has 55% of the 18 to 30 demographic seeking tertiary level education, while Latin America’s relevant area is 35% and rising yet the Caribbean can only muster 10% of the 18 to 30 demographic in Tertiary level education.

Bonita Morgan, was the MC for the day's activities and is also Director of CTO's Human Resources

Sir Hilary then pointed out as corroboration to what he sees as paltry results, the fact the West Indies is the slowest part of the world to recover from the current financial doldrums which have plagued the planet for nearly five years now…

The Head Table of the HR Conference (L to R): Dr Justin Robinson - UWI; Richard Sealy - B'dos Tourism Minister; Hugh Sealy - Scty. Gen. of the CTO; Sir Hilary Beckles - Principal of the Cave Hill Campus and Dr Gladstone Best - Principal of the Barbados Community College

While the Principal sees the need for a revolution in education, he knows it will be an uphill battle citing how a recent survey by Jamaica’s Gleaner newspaper indicated 60% of Jamaicans felt Independence was a bad idea despite 50 years of breaking away from the UK.

He found this a sad view when especially juxtaposed with the fact 80% of UWI’s Cave Hill graduates secure a job in the first 12 months after earning their diplomas. The Principal sees Services and Management (or Leadership) as the rescue path for not just Barbados, but the entire region. The Pro Vice Chancellor received thunderous applause for his detailed assessment.

After the conference, I asked Sir Hilary in the context if education is important, then how do you explain Sir Richard Branson or Steve Jobs who did not finish school? He acknowledged they may not have official academia standards but they constantly read or trained themselves, which was an excellent and accurate response!

Sir Hilary however, did not realise another sad fact, there were about seven males in the audience which was close to capacity at the Sir Henry Fraser auditorium – this is not counting nor including media covering the event nor the head table of delegates & officials – which means apart from a dearth of tertiary graduands there is also a gender imbalance in the situation for my view! {NEXT? RELATED TOPICDr Justin Robinson’s address at the CTO’s 6th Annual Tourism Human Resources Conf.}

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