PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten – On Friday, 11 January 2019, USM welcomed its latest cohort of first-year students in the areas of Business, Education, Hospitality and General Liberal Arts to the Student Readiness Orientation session. The group of 21 students pursuing Associate and Bachelor degrees represents a milestone in USM’s history as 2019 marks the 30th anniversary since the founding of the island’s institution of higher education.
In her welcome address, Dean of Academics Dr. Carter encouraged incoming students to always keep in mind the reason they have started this academic journey. She also expressed, among other things, her commitment to supporting them and ended her speech by thanking them for choosing USM. When asked about the significance of Friday’s orientation day, Dr. Carter stated: “Having started my journey towards higher education at USM, it is always humbling and yet exciting to welcome new students to this institution. I know firsthand where a degree from USM can take you and I am happy to see so many decide to begin that journey with us”. In her speech to the students, Dr. Carter encouraged them to keep at the forefront the reason they have started this educational journey. She also expressed her commitment to supporting them on their journey and thanked them for choosing USM.
The students also got the chance to hear from the representative of the different departments at the campus. Marketing and Admissions Specialist Ms. Mitsha Shobhan Giterson said it is imperative that we prepare our students before the start of their studies, especially as we promise to provide the Key to a Brighter Future. The aim of the orientation days is to ensure students complete their administrative duties, have the key information prior to their class start and are fully motivated and prepare to concur their dreams. Being fully prepared before the classes actually start is the first step to success”. Ms. Giterson. Went on stating after working with several universities abroad I can honestly say that we take care of our students every step of the way. One of USM alumna Ms. Rochana Richardson, who is visiting the island addressed the students. She expressed how grateful she was to USM and the team as she is now enjoying her studies at Birmingham College in the UK. “I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for USM. The experience that I have gained here at the campus has helped me excel in so many ways”.
One of the new students Ms. K Felissaint said her favorite part of the days was getting to know her Division Head. She was able to share her ultimate goal (to become a psychologist) and already got advice on what her next steps (college) should be after completing her degree at USM.
USM President Antonio Carmona was happy to announce that USM is sponsoring a business research project conducted by faculty member Catherine Burns, who is pursuing her MA in Education Leadership and Management at Royal Roads University in Canada. Ms. Burns, who is studying the role that USM can play in recovery and sustainable tourism, has organized focus groups to discuss Sint Maarten’s potential. Participants are called to share their ideas, experiences, and expectations for new programmes and tourism training post-Irma.
“This the first of a series of research lines we hope to develop at USM, in service to the business community and government. Our administration continues to believe that USM can play a vital role in sustainable development. In this third decade of our existence, we aim to become the motor of socio-economic development”, said Carmona in written statements delivered to the press on Saturday. As the enrollment for the Summer and Fall semester is now open, the team at USM welcome new applicants to come by the campus, or visit the website to apply online www.usm.sx