The University of the Virgin Islands entered into five-year memoranda of understanding with Anguilla Community College (ACC) and H. Lavity Stoutt Community College (HLSCC), British Virgin Islands. These agreements will allow UVI to establish areas for functional cooperation with both colleges. UVI President Dr. David Hall announced the MOUs at the June meeting of the UVI Board of Trustees.
Through these agreements, students attending any of the institutions will be able to easily transfer their credits. “These MOUs create a clearer and smoother transition for students from both institutions to UVI,” said UVI Special Assistant to the President Dr. Haldane Davies. “They will also provide opportunities for faculty and student exchanges, and opportunities for faculty from both institutions and UVI to engage in joint research and consultancy projects.”
ACC and HLSCC have agreed to provide stand-alone recruitment opportunities for UVI to interact with students in their final year of study on an agreed upon basis for the fall semester. In return, UVI will waive the application fees of prospective students from Anguilla and the British Virgin Islands.
“The MOU between UVI and HLSCC cements a longstanding, mutually-beneficial relationship that has resulted in various types of exchanges through the years and regular transition of HLSCC students to UVI,” said Dr. Karl Dawson, HLSCC president. “This agreement holds great promise as collaboration is now even more important in our shrinking world, and who better to work with than our closest neighbors.”
As part of the agreement, UVI will be provided with classroom space and office space at both colleges in order to establish a physical presence for undergraduate and graduate students unable to attend class on either UVI campus. Additionally, qualified ACC and HLSCC faculty will be considered for adjunct faculty roles with UVI, where suitable, as a means of reducing cost and building capacity among faculty.
“This partnership is an important and necessary step in creating new opportunities for students and faculty from both UVI and ACC to engage in continuous learning and development,” said ACC President Dr. Delroy Louden. “This MOU will enable the ACC to access and strengthen the infrastructure of program offerings to our students through current technology which enables students to further studies with UVI while remaining in Anguilla.” He continued, “For students desirous of studying abroad, the proximity of UVI to Anguilla is convenient.”
In an effort to provide the best educational opportunities, UVI will educate prospective students on the degrees and programs at UVI that will best suit their educational goals. Students will also be advised on the most suitable programs and courses at either college that will best prepare them to attend UVI.
ACC and HLSCC will collaborate with UVI on projects and information/knowledge transfer in areas of alternative energy, entrepreneurship, conservation and fisheries, educational and psychological research pertaining to social issues, risk management, disaster management, faculty and student exchange, institutional and student learning outcomes assessment, health disparities, nurturing and preservation of Virgin Islands history culture, inter-institution lecture series, performing arts, and sports.
According to the agreement, a midterm review of the MOU will be conducted after two and one-half years to determine what adjustments may be necessary.
“We would hope that as a result of these collaborations we would see, first, more students receiving their education at UVI,” said Dr. Davies. “Second, we will see a more informed community with an improved approach to strategic planning that emphasizes economic and social development opportunities.” He envisions that UVI will be able to help various governments and territories to plan in a manner that will allow economic growth and for them to be supported by programs offered at community colleges and the University.