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Why is the Caribbean an Up-and-Coming Region for Higher Education?

The Caribbean, as well as being a tropical paradise of beautiful islands and white-sand beaches, is also home to many top quality universities and higher education institutions. And while it may be most well known on the global scene for its quality medical education, it's also an up-and-coming destination for aspiring business leaders, entrepreneurs, and innovators who want to study in fields like business, tourism, and finance. So here's a look at why students are choosing to study in the Caribbean. And we'll tell you everything you need to know about one of the region's best schools.

Sep 6, 2023
  • Study Abroad
Why is the Caribbean an Up-and-Coming Region for Higher Education?

Unleashing the Caribbean’s potential

In 2019 several Caribbean nations announced 19 reforms to stimulate small and medium-sized businesses. The reforms included cutting red tape for starting a business, increased access to reasonably priced energy, tax reforms, a more streamlined clearance process for exports and imports, and clearer guidelines for enforcing business contracts. Santiago Downes, a program manager on the World Bank's Doing Business Unit, welcomes the new measures. He says, "It is encouraging to see that economies in the Caribbean have reinforced their reform agendas. It's an excellent start for the region, and I'm sure it will unlock so much potential for economic growth."

Unfortunately, these reforms could not do much to prevent the negative economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak. But the future is looking up for businesses across the Caribbean. A study by the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean predicts the region's economies will grow by almost 4% during the remainder of 2021While this strongth growth is very promising, it does leave open the possibility of labor shortages, if there are not enough skilled people to fill all of the new jobs created by this economic growth. This is where higher education comes in, with the many great universities and colleges in the Caribbean educating and training young people so that whey they graduate they are fully prepared for the job market, so they can they prosper as individuals and, in turn, further boost the Caribbean.

Responsible economic development

The Caribbean is a beautiful spot famous for its stunning beaches, deep blue seas, and fascinating biodiversity. The region is home to whale sharks, green monkeys, crocodiles, bats, armadillos, and lots of unusual critters. As such, the Caribbean is a popular destination for scientists, researchers, and conservation specialists. For example, The Nature Conservancy (TNC) is, along with partner organizations, doing amazing work to save coral reefs in the region. By using state-of-the-art remote sensing tools, including satellites and laser scanners, its researchers have now assessed the condition of coral reefs in the Caribbean with over 90% accuracy. Along with Planet and the Carnegie Airborne Observatory, it is working on the first high-resolution map of the Caribbean’s coral reefs, in order to put especial efforts into protecting the most vulnerable, by planning, pushing for more investment in reef conservation, and informing strategy and policymaking.

This is just one example of excellent environmental work from scientists and campaigners. Others include a fishing sanctuary in Jamaica, investing in land rights for Indigenous communities to protect the rainforest, youth council environmental advocacy, a ban on gill fishing nets, campaigning against 'aquatic wild meat', marine reserves, and campaigning to protect endangered animals.

In fact, the region's scientific market is booming. Caribbean universities are producing an increasing number of scientific publications, especially in fields like agriculture, biomedical research, and environmental sciences. These essential works are significantly contributing to the global production of knowledge regarding biodiversity and sustainable practices. They're also helping Caribbean schools attract more attention (and funding) from top universities and NGOs in Europe, the USA, and Asia. For example, the Inter-American Foundation (IAF) offers grants of $25,000 to $400,000 for research into improving the lives of people living in the Caribbean through sustainable growth business practices.

Female empowerment is driving economic growth

Empowering women creates stronger economies. Women's economic empowerment increases workforce diversification, boosts productivity and income equality, and leads to many other positive development outcomes.

Empowerment starts with education, and this is one area where Jamaica excels. Women account for more than 60% of higher education students in Jamaica. And these new generations of young, highly educated women are having a massive impact on economic development across the Caribbean. A report by the World Bank found that women in the Caribbean labor market contributed to a 30% reduction in poverty over a ten-year period. And today, more than 30% of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises in the Caribbean are owned and managed by women.

Strong partnerships build strong economies

Success in business and economic growth are joint efforts. And that's why the Caribbean has forged close economic and cultural ties with partners in the US. The Center for Strategic and International Studies is a US nonprofit, non-partisan think tank that works with Caribbean businesses and higher education centers to contribute to practical and timely economic growth. It analyses issues such as migration, trade, development, and energy. Ongoing projects include The Renewable Energy for Latin America and the Caribbean (RELAC) Initiative. Supported and funded by the UN and sources of climate finance in the USA, it's looking at ways to generate economic and employment opportunities within sustainable Caribbean economies that work for people and the planet.

The University of the Commonwealth Caribbean

The University of the Commonwealth Caribbean (UCC) is a prestigious, private university located across five campuses in Kingston, Jamaica. Dedicated to fostering innovation and future business leaders, UCC offers a range of professional certificates, diplomas, and undergraduate and postgraduate degrees.

UCC students learn real-world business and industry skills by studying human resource management, information technology, marketing, hospitality management, business, finance, and business administration. Taught by world-class academics with years of industry experience, all UCC courses are fully accredited and designed to transform students into the kind of candidates every successful business wants.

To ensure students are fully prepared for what the future of work will look like, UCC has its International Online Learning Academy. These remote programs are also a flexible and affordable option for busy professionals or people looking for a way to balance study with other important commitments, like caring for young children. All you need to study online at UCC is a computer with internet access, a UCC student email account, and a commitment to taking control of your learning.

UCC's online undergraduate programs include Applied Psychology, Business Administration, Marketing, Tourism and Hospitality, and many more. Professionals looking to take their career to the next level can enroll in postgraduate degrees in Engineering, Accounting, Finance, and Entrepreneurship. And there's a range of on-demand short courses if you're looking to upskill in a particular area or get a taste of some of the future's most exciting industries, such as Artificial Intelligence, Data Science, Virtual Reality, and Blockchain.

UCC's commitment to excellence has helped it gain recognition from leading universities and global education organizations. In addition to national recognition from the University Council of Jamaica (UCJ), UCC's law degrees are registered with and recognized by the University of London and the United Kingdom's Quality Assurance Agency. The university has also earned premier status from the Accreditation Service for International Schools, Colleges, and Universities (ASIC) for the quality of services provided to students.

The University of the Commonwealth Caribbean (UCC)

To build on its commitment to make quality education a reality, University of the Commonwealth Caribbean has established a new division which offers online undergraduate and graduate degrees to students from all over the globe. UCC Global offers a variety of programs that are in demand globally; students come from all over the globe and are able to complete their degree without having to leave their home country. These online, asynchronous programs allow students to receive a quality and accredited degree while maintaining their current job and other commitments.

Fourth-year BSc Business Administration student Rusheyne is loving life as a UCC student. She says, "UCC is a special place because of the opportunity to study online and the ability to form friendships with people from all over the world. I always feel inspired and motivated. It's an incredible experience to be a part of this institution."

And Keron, a BA Media Communications and Cultural Studies student, adds, "Studying at UCC has made my life so much better. The programs are flexible, giving me time to work and come to school. I also get the opportunity to be involved in clubs and societies and do other meaningful things that enhance my personal and professional development."

The University of the Commonwealth Caribbean is a unique and exciting school where you can start building the future you're dreaming about. So visit UCC today for more information on how and when to apply.

Article written in association with the University of the Commonwealth Caribbean (UCC).

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University of the Commonwealth Caribbean - UCC Global Campus