Executive Director of the Foreign Mission Board, of the National Baptist Convention USA, Inc., Reverend Terrence D Griffith, today formally announced a multi-year scholarship initiative for students of the TA Marryshow Community College (TAMCC).
National Baptist Convention is the largest Black Religious Body in the World, with 8.5 million members and has missional work across the globe.
The Foreign Mission Board of the National Baptist Convention, USA Inc., partnered with the Embassy of Grenada in Washington DC, as part of the Embassy’s 48th Anniversary of Independence Celebration Initiative to sponsor deserving students who planned to or had enrolled in TAMCC.
The initial offer of sponsorship is for the 2021-2023 Associate Degree programme, and the recipients, from various parishes including Petite Martinique, have undertaken studies in the fields of Building Technology, Food and Beverage Management, Business Studies and Natural Sciences.
The Embassy sought community nominations in January, and the students’ application forms and personal essays were reviewed by a selection committee. Over the last 2 months, Ambassador Yolande Y Smith has been in touch with the parents/guardians, and in February both the Ambassador and Reverend Griffith met with the students over Zoom, after receiving attendance verification from the College.
While home on vacation earlier this month, Ambassador Smith hosted a meet-and-greet for the students, which gave them a chance to form bonds of friendship and early networking. The aim is to continue to engage with the students through mentorship, guidance counselling, and internship placements throughout their educational careers.
Today’s brief handing over ceremony at the College was attended by the principal Dr Ronald Brunton; Roxie McLeash-Hutchinson, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, International Business and Caricom Affairs; Marva Bowen-Neptune, Registrar; Nerissa Andrews-Gilkes, Interim Bursar; Eslyn Lewis, Director of Students Affairs, and 4 of the 6 students.
In acknowledging the collaboration between the FMB and the Embassy in Washington as a direct response to the Ministry’s mandate of resource mobilisation, PS Hutchinson said, “We are happy to participate in this initiative and continue to look for opportunities to benefit students and bring the value of education to our young people.” She implored the awardees to be diligent in their academic pursuits and to deliver results that will take them to the next level.
In officially announcing the 2021-2023 scholarships, Reverend Griffith said, “We believe in young people, and we believe that the young men and women in Grenada must be supported.” In speaking directly to the awardees, he told them, “Do not squander the opportunity but study hard and perform, so that the FMB can continue to support you beyond TAMCC.” Reverend Griffith left the students with an excerpt from TA Marryshow’s 1958 address to the opening of the Federation Parliament in Trinidad and Tobago.
“To each man is given a marble to carve for the wall, a stone that is needed to heighten the beauty of all, and only his hands have the cunning to put it in place, and only his soul has the magic to give it grace. Yes, to each man is given a task no other can do, and the errand is waiting, it has waited ages for you, and as you appear the first ones are turning their gaze to see what you’d with your chance in the chamber of days; you, you, you, it all depends on you.”
In his remarks, Dr Brunton who joined TAMCC in November of 2021, took the opportunity to provide a brief overview of the Strategic Direction on TAMCC and how valuable initiatives such as these generous scholarships are to achieving its mandate, not just as an educational institution, but as a member of the Community and the National Community. Dr Brunton said, “I look forward to working closely with all of you in developing opportunities that support our students on their journey towards independence and success. I look forward as well to opportunities to strengthen the College to better serve our students, to enhance the quality of our curriculum and stimulate culture based on inquiry and critical thinking.”
The FMB pledged 10 scholarships for the 2022-2024 and the 2023-2025 programs respectively. Griffith anticipates that these new scholarships will be competitive, and therefore, they will be advertised annually in May, to receive applications from graduating secondary school seniors throughout the tri-island state.
The Foreign Mission Board also works with and supports member church organisations that are involved in humanitarian work across the globe. Executive Director Griffith said: “We have been engaged in missional work for over 140 years and are committed to lifting the lives of the underserved and working to ameliorating some of the endemic problems that they face each day. It is our delight to extend our reach to Grenada and other places in the Caribbean that need and appreciate the support of the Foreign Mission Board of the National Baptist Convention, USA, Inc.”