Plans for a Tobago University are expected to go beyond education. In fact, the move could boost economic development too.
Last week (April 17), Chief Secretary Kelvin Charles announced at the post Executive Council media briefing that a memorandum of understanding is soon expected to be signed with the Tobago College and University Consortium for “appropriate services to facilitate the establishment” of the university.
… The intention is, in the main, to have persons come to Tobago for the purpose of tertiary education,” Charles said.
“And the spinoff effects that will come from that will include not only tuition fees in US dollars, but it will include accommodation here, it will include the element of entertainment, and it will also include food and so on. So that there’s likely to be a spinoff effect in respect of economic activity in Tobago.”
This process could begin as early as September, and Charles said the target is a minimum 100 visiting students. In the short term, the programmes will include specialised nursing, a premedical programme, agriculture and the performing arts. Next year, he said, marine sciences and culinary studies will also be considered.
Over the past two weeks, representatives for foreign universities visited the island to look at potential programme campus spaces.
“I’m happy to say that in most cases, it has met with their approval,” the Chief Secretary reported. “In other instances, some additional work would have to be done, and that will be carried out over time to facilitate other programmes.”