The University of the West Indies, Mona and the team of the Office of Graduate Studies and Research would like to welcome you, or welcome you back to UWI. I am Professor Marcia Roye the Director of Graduate Studies and Research. This graduate journey that you are commencing will set the trajectory for your career for the next 10-20 yrs.
Of the 60 plus tertiary institutions that operate in the Jamaican environment, your UWI is ranked #1 in the Caribbean, in the top 1% of universities in Latin America and the Caribbean region and in the top 1.5% of universities globally. You are a now part of a global family that is achieving and doing great things. You have chosen the best institution that will help you achieve the requisite skills and experiences to propel your career.
UWI also distinguishes itself from the other tertiary institutions by its offering of a range of Taught Masters programmes, research degrees (MPhil and PhD) and professional doctorates (DBA, DrPH, EdD). Most of you are pursuing graduate programmes which will require you to do a research methods course, a research paper, a research project or maybe you are enrolled in a research degree. Your graduate degree will develop your critical thinking, analytical skills and nurture you as a researcher ready to contribute to nation and regional development.
As a researcher your task is a noble and selfless one, as it is through research, that innovations are developed to solve tomorrow’s problems today. At UWI many of these innovations are developed by, or with the assistance of, our graduate students. Our graduate students have developed solutions to alleviate the ravages of climate change, cleaning our oceans to ensure the health of our marine environment and advance strategies to recover from the COVID 19 pandemic. It is work that will help the region and world to rebuild coming out of the covid pandemic
The current pandemic has taught us that research or innovations alone are not enough. In December of 2019, it was clear that a novel coronavirus, the SARS-CoV-2, which causes a severe acute respiratory syndrome was spreading rapidly internationally. Within a few weeks, the COVID 19 virus was sequenced and vaccine development commenced. Coronavirus outbreaks were familiar to the scientific community with SARS in 2003 and MERS in 2012. A year later, in December of 2020, vaccines were developed and were approved for emergency use. We all breathed a sigh of relief because a solution was on the way!
The vaccine resistance and hesitancy been experienced by many globally, suggest that it is not only important to use research to develop innovative solutions, but it is also paramount that we implement and integrate. It is this collaborative effort of various disciplines that will make our research impactful. The science will depend on authors, communicators, and policy makers working together to ensure that implementation is effective in our society. As researchers ready to solve the issues affecting our society, ensure that in your tool kit for life you follow the TRIPLE I which is our theme for this academic year Inspire, Innovate and Integrate for a better tomorrow.
So, like the UWI TRIPLE A Strategic plan, this pandemic has taught us that any solution developed to solve humanity’s problems must be accessible (to the populace), agile (responsive) and aligned to needs of humanity.
Welcome to the University of the West Indies (UWI) Mona, welcome to graduate school, where we inspire, innovate and integrate.
Professor Marcia Roye
Director, Graduate Studies and Research