St George’s University, Grenada, welcomes student leaders and academic experts for annual conference of the Council for Education in the Commonwealth
Sonny Leong CBE, Chair of Council for Education in the Commonwealth addressing delegates to the Annual Conference. Read it HERE
St George’s University, Grenada (SGU) will play host this week to the annual conference of the Council for Education in the Commonwealth (CEC), welcoming student leaders and international academics under the banner of ‘Students: Our Common Wealth. A Focus on Student Success’.
This year’s conference, taking place from 21-23 May at SGU’s True Blue Campus in Grenada, will mark two historic milestones: the modern Commonwealth celebrates its 70th anniversary, while the CEC itself celebrates 60 years since it was founded. It will also be the first CEC conference to take place in a Caribbean country.
The Secretary-General of the Commonwealth, the Rt Hon Patricia Scotland QC, will deliver a keynote address at the conference, and will be joined by others including Dame Cécile La Grenade, Governor-General of Grenada.
‘Students: Our Common Wealth. A Focus on Student Success’ will showcase presentations and debates on a variety of topics pertaining to student success and achievement. Presentation themes include education challenges across the Caribbean; equity and access; the role of learning technologies to enhance student experience; teacher education; qualitative improvements in education, and importantly, understanding students and their needs, for which a special panel discussion will be held to appreciate this perspective.
The conference has attracted over 400 delegates from across the Commonwealth, including delegates and prominent speakers from Caribbean states, Namibia, Kenya, Nigeria, Malaysia, the UK and Canada. These include Professor Eon Nigel Harris, Vice-Chancellor Emeritus of the University of the West Indies; Professor Jacky Lumarque, President of Quisqueya University, Haiti; Professor Kenneth Matengu, Vice Chancellor of the University of Namibia; Professor Asha Kanwar, President of the Commonwealth of Learning, Vancouver; Professor Craig Mahoney, Vice-Chancellor, University of the West of Scotland; the Association of Commonwealth Universities; and many other speakers.
Sonny Leong CBE, Chair of the Council for Education in the Commonwealth, said: “As we gather to learn how we can catalyse, drive and enable student success in the coming decade, we remember that this is a world and future of duality; full of challenges and yet rife with opportunity. In that context: what does success look like? On what foundations does success rest? What kind of education do our students and people need in order to prepare them for the future? As we celebrate the 70th anniversary of the Commonwealth and our own 60th Anniversary, we continue to be motivated by finding answers to these questions.”
Dr G Richard Olds, President of SGU, said: “One of our core values here at SGU is providing our students with a wide-ranging, forward-looking education. Students now in tertiary education will lead the way in addressing the challenges that our societies face in the coming decades, be they in health or any other field. We appreciate the unique leadership role that the Commonwealth plays in this area, and we are proud to welcome so many visionary students and leading academics from throughout the Commonwealth to our campus for such an important conference.”
Underpinning all the presentations and discussions will be the need to respond to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal number 4. This encompasses the right to access quality and inclusive education; acquiring knowledge and skills needed to promote sustainable development and sustainable lifestyles; gender equality; promoting peace and non-violence; global citizenship and appreciation of cultural diversity and its contribution to sustainable development.
Best practices and insights from this conference will be shared among education entities in the Commonwealth, and may provide themes for the 21st Conference of Commonwealth Education Ministers to be held in Kenya in 2021. The CEC will also be holding its Annual Conference that year in Nairobi.