UTech, Jamaica Graduates Urged to Hold Fast to Integrity, Excellence and Service


Professor Stephen Vasciannie, CD (at podium) President, University of Technology, Jamaica addressees happy graduates at the ceremony for the Presentation of Graduates held on Saturday, November 4, 2017 at the National Arena. 

“I encourage this Graduating Class to hold fast to integrity, excellence and service to others,” was the urging of President, University of Technology, Jamaica, Professor Stephen Vasciannie, CD in his address at the University’s annual Graduation Ceremony held on Saturday, November 4, 2017 at the National Arena.

In congratulating the almost 1,000 graduates, Professor Vasciannie pointed to the role that they will play in advancing national development through their respective professions.  In their continuing journey,  the President encouraged the Graduating Class to resist “temptations to forget principles of fairness, justice, truth and mutual respect of others.”

His Excellency the Most Hon. Sir Patrick Allen, ON, GCMG, CD, KSt.J, Governor-General and University of Technology, Jamaica Visitor in his absence conveyed his congratulations to the Graduating Class through a message read by University Registrar Mrs Mercedes Deane.  His Excellency expressed commendation to the University “on its consistent growth and expansion,” including the recently gained “accreditation for the law programme.”

Honorary Degrees

The Doctor of Laws Honoris Causa (Hon. LLD) honorary degrees were conferred on three outstanding Jamaicans –  Mr. Gary Hendrickson, CEO Continental Baking Company Limited,  The Rev. Prebendary Rose Hudson-Wilkin, Chaplain to the Speaker of the House of Commons and Chaplain to Her Majesty the Queen and The Hon. Mrs. Justice Zaila McCalla, OJ, Chief Justice of Jamaica.

Chancellor, the Most Hon. Edward Seaga, ON, PC (left) confers Honorary Degrees on (above from top) Mr Gary Hendrickson, the Reverend Rose Hudson-Wilkin and the Hon. Mrs. Justice Zaila McCalla, OJ in recognition of their achievements of international distinction in their respective fields of endeavour.

The citation on business man and philanthropist, Mr Gary Hendrickson, read by University Public Orator Mrs. Pamela Kelly, lauded him for “the remarkable link he has managed to forge between business and charity,” while the citation on Rev. Hudson-Wilkin extolled her for her trailblazing successes in achieving many firsts as a woman of colour.  The Public Orator’s citation on Jamaica’s first female Chief Justice, the Hon. Mrs. Justice Zaila McCalla, acknowledged her considerable distinction in the field of law and in service to the Jamaican justice system.

In his acceptance remarks, Mr Hendrickson dedicated the honour to his customers and staff, noting that “I accept this for them because philanthropy can only be possible by profits.”  In congratulating the graduates, the patriotic philanthropist urged them to “be good to Jamaica” in practising values of civility, discipline, transparency and accountability.  And in highlighting the value of service and giving back, he told the new graduates, “if you are lucky enough to do well and I know you will, it is your responsibility to send the elevator back down.”

Rev. Hudson-Wilkin in her acceptance thanked UTech, Jamaica “for recognizing the work that I have done…which now becomes part of my life story.”  Noting that 97 persons had applied for the job she now holds as Chaplain to the Speaker of the House of Commons, she encouraged the graduates to keep setting their sights on blazing a trail even where there seems to be no clear path.

The Hon. Chief Justice, Mrs. Zaila McCalla also emphasized the values of civility, integrity and exemplary work ethics as imperatives for excellence.

President, Prof. Stephen Vasciannie  (left) and Pro-Chancellor, Mr Richard Powell (right) pose with recipients of Honorary Degrees 2017 (from 2nd left)  Gary Hendrickson,  CEO, Continental Baking Company Limited, The Rev. Prebendary Rose Hudson-Wilkin, Chaplain to the Speaker of the House of Commons and Her Majesty the Queen and The Hon. Justice Zaila McCalla, Chief Justice. 

“Open Doors for Others” - Valedictorian

Valedictorian was Miss Crystal Taylor, First Class Honours graduate of the Bachelor of Arts in Communication Arts and Technology course of study, Faculty of Education and Liberal Studies. She charged her fellow graduates to use their education and beneficial experiences gained at UTech, Ja. to open doors for others in their communities.  “Let this be your charge today, to change the world starting with your community,” the Valedictorian affirmed.

Valedictorian Crystal Taylor delivering her address.

President’s Pins


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The President’s Pin was presented to three outstanding graduates who attained the criteria of a Grade ‘A’ and GPA of 3.75 to 4.00 in the last Academic Year.  Accepting the President’s Pin from Prof. Stephen Vasciannie  are First Class Honours graduates (from left)   Rhona Wong-Reid, School of Public Health and Health Technology who was awarded the Bachelor of Science in Public Health Nursing with a GPA of 3.83,  Chanelle Pearson, Faculty of Engineering and Computing who was awarded the Bachelor of Engineering in Computer Science with a GPA of 3:75 and Shervain Barrett, Faculty of Engineering and Computing, who was awarded the  Bachelor of Engineering in Computer Science with  a GPA 3.76. 

First Class Honours


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University Registrar, Mrs. Mercedes Deane presents First Class Honours degrees (from left) to Nastasia Shields, Bachelor of Business Administration  in Accounting – Finance and Banking, Rakaya Henry,  Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Alexandre Young,  Doctor of Medical Dentistry (DMD) and Stacy Rennalls, Bachelor of Science in Public Health Nursing.


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University Registrar, Mrs. Mercedes Deane presents First Class Honours degrees (from left) to Annestta Samuels, Bachelor of Arts in Communication Arts and Technology, Kadeja Spencer, Bachelor of Engineering in Civil Engineering and Jason Solomon, Bachelor of Science in Applied Science – Industrial Analytical Chemistry.

Achieved with Honours

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UTech, Ja.  Registrar, Mrs. Mercedes Deane presents Upper Second Class Honours graduates Imani Lawrence (left) with her Bachelor of Arts degree in Architectural Studies and Janea Malcolm with the Bachelor of Laws degree.

Masters Graduates


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University Registrar, Mrs. Mercedes Deane presents Master’s graduates with their  degrees ( From left  Kemar Jennings, Master of Business Administration- Marketing, Karlene Smith, Master of Science in Nurse Anaesthesia, Charlene Davis, Master of Science in Dental Therapy, Mathew McFarlane, Master of Architecture and Carl Barrett, Master of Science in Physical Education and Sport.

The renditions by the UTech, Jamaica Choir and Instrumental Band added to the pomp and pageantry of the Graduation Ceremony.


Michelle Beckford (Mrs.)
Corporate Communications Manager
University of Technology, Jamaica
Telephone: 970-5299
Email: mbeckford@utech.edu.jm