Shujah Reiph sees future with university graduate in every home

POSTED: 06/27/11 2:05 PM

St. Maarten – Leading cultural activist and recent University of St. Martin graduate Shujah Reiph wants to see “a USM graduate in every St. Martin home.”

Reiph made his statement while delivering the “Address of the Class of 2011” at the USM commencement exercise at the Westin resort Saturday a week ago. He told the graduating students that he believed in them and in the university’s potential and increasing contribution to the development of the entire island.

Reiph said that as the nation’s premier institution of higher learning, he looked forward to the day when there would be “a USM graduate in every St. Maarten home.” He received a vigorous applause from the graduates, USM officials and faculty, and their over 200-odd guests.

Reiph was elected by his fellow students to deliver the Class of 2011 address. He recounted with admiration the “sacrifice and commitment” made by the students, and pointed out that a number of them worked full time and had their own families to care for while pursuing a college degree at USM.

One student, said Reiph, had to bring her child to her evening classes at USM for two years. Another, attended lectures dressed in her casino uniform and would then rush off to work after her evening classes.

Reiph himself worked fulltime as a supervisor at EDF (the French-side electricity company), while studying at USM for his associate’s degree in general liberal arts. Along with Reiph, seven other students obtained the AA degree in liberal arts, and three received an associate of applied science in business information management. An additional 20 associate degrees were bestowed in business at the graduation ceremony.

Nearly half of the USM graduates were awarded a bachelor’s degree in education, business administration, or hospitality and tourism management.

The Bachelor of Arts (BA) and Bachelor of Science (BS) courses in business and tourism were offered at USM in conjunction with UVI, UNA, and CURISES. One teaching certificate was awarded.

The class of 2011 constituted about 58 students, making it the largest single group of USM graduates since the university was founded in 1989. Reiph commended his fellows for “making history” as the largest USM graduating class, which included at least nine men, also the largest number of males graduating in one group to date at USM.

The keynote speaker at the graduation ceremony was Vivian Roberts, MA, a USM alumnus and principal of the Sr. Marie Laurence School. In her address, Roberts repeatedly called on USM and government officials to find ways to cooperate in developing the university in the interest of St. Martin. USM is a private institution.

Did you like this? Share it:
Shujah Reiph sees future with university graduate in every home by

Comments are closed.