She's Certified!!!

With the growing need for trained workers in the Tourism Industry, Edmund Bartlett, Minister of Tourism lauded over 200 graduates who were certified as bartenders, hospitality educators, pastry chefs and culinary tutors. Our very own Paulette Christie was among the few. On Wednesday she recieved her certificate as a culinary tutor at the graduation ceremony for students of the Jamaica Centre of Tourism.

Well done Mrs Christie #certified

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Montego Bay Community College expanding offerings to include Mandarin

MONTEGO BAY, St James —The Montego Bay Community College (MBCC) is adding a number of new courses to its offerings as it continues its drive to transform the education landscape in western Jamaica.

Dr Maureen Nelson, principal of the college, informed that among the courses soon to be offered at the 43year-old institution is Mandarin.

“We are about to sign a memorandum of understanding with the Chinese Embassy, and we are very, very excited about it because they are going to give us a Mandarin teacher, a Chinese national, who is going to teach Mandarin, making us the only one of all the community colleges that will offer Mandarin,” Dr Nelson told the Jamaica Observer West recently.

She added that the institution is currently in the process of securing a work permit for the teacher and classes are expected to begin soon.

In recent years, the college has been introducing a number of new courses, including an associate degree in funeral service and mortuary sciences and a bachelor’s degree in plant science, computer and technical studies in a bid to meet the needs of the population.

Plans are also being finalised to offer courses in stenography and to provide training for members of the Jamaica Constabulary Force.

At the start of the academic year in September, the college started to offer an associate degree course in criminal justice, as well as associate degree course in phycology. Those courses currently have 32 and 38 students respectively.

Dr Nelson noted that the expansion which is being undertaken through various partnerships is necessary due to the growing demand for those programmes. “We are expanding in many different areas,” a proud Dr Nelson said.

The MBCC, which opened its doors in 1975, currently has an enrolment of approximately 2,000 students and more than 65 lecturers at both its Montego Bay, St James location and its Frome campus in Westmoreland, which came on stream almost 15 years ago.

A distinguished educator for more than four decades, Dr Nelson, who is passionate about moulding the lives of students, has been the principal at the institution for just over two years.

Prior to that, she was a lecturer at the college, the coach of the netball team, and vice principal.

Dr Nelson had also taught at the Hanover based-rusea’s High School, her alma mater.

Nathan Robb, chairman of the MBCC board, whose three-year tenure ends in December, says his mandate is to ensure that the college keeps apace with the demands of education and the economy.

“I am not there to create any legacy. I am simply there to ensure that the institution that it is remains solid and grows, in keeping with the demands of the economy and education,” he emphasised.

He argued that the college, under his watch, recognises that the builders of the society are people who do not necessarily seek out the limelight, but are people who by virtue of their talent and by virtue of their genuine contribution, have long displayed an open public scrutiny and acceptance, and are people who have contributed to the development of the college.

As such, he said, last year, the college inducted Westmoreland businessman Russell Hammond; veteran reggae ambassador Dr James Chambers, better known as “Jimmy Cliff,” and environmentalist Hugh Shim, as honorary fellows.

The trio formed the fifth batch to be awarded as honorary fellows by the tertiary institution that started as an amalgamation of the sixth forms of Cornwall College, Montego Bay High and Mount Alvernia High schools.

The college, which Dr Nelson claims is now ranked as one of the best tertiary institutions in the country, last academic year recorded an average pass mark of 90 per cent in the Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE).  (source)

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MBCC’s Career Advancement Programme (CAP) boasts second Place in Diamond Challenge Competition

Montego Bay Community College’s Career Advancement Programme (CAP) boasts second place in Diamond Challenge for High School Entrepreneurs Competition


Excellence, dominance and hard work have always been the mantra of the Montego Bay Community College. Undoubtedly, the Montego Bay Community College has made its hall mark in meeting the criteria of being dubbed the best ‘University College in Western Jamaica’. Under the tutelage of Dr Maureen Nelson, this quote synchronized with the recent achievements made by the Career Advancement Programme (CAP) at the College.


The CAP Programme caters to students who are passionate in skills, relating to cosmetology, entrepreneurship and other relatable trade. The CAP programme is coordinated by Mrs.Sonja Madden who has indicated, in more ways than one, her interest and enthusiasm in this programme. The journey began with the College submitting two entries into the CAP Entrepreneurship Competition: ‘Eco- Lamp’ and ‘Shubby Dust Pan’. From a total of 19 teams across the island that entered the competition, the eco-lamp entry walked away with prizes including, ‘Most Creative Concept’, and ‘Best Overall Concept’ with Noel McDonald getting the award for best male presenter. Subsequently, the original concept was redesigned and renamed ‘Paradise Care’. The impetus to continue resulted in the creation of a national team that was led by Noel McDonald. The Eco-Lamp concept specialized in the removal of waste, thereby educating the population on the importance of recycling. Another target audience involved in the promotion of this concept were surrounding schools. Furthermore, the concept was entered into the Diamond Challenge Competition and was selected as a quarterfinalist from among the over 700 entries.


The quarter finals took place in Kingston on Saturday, February 10, 2018. The team, consisting of Noel McDonald, Sophia Morris and other members earned the prize of first place in the social concept track in the Jamaican leg of the competition. However, victory did not end here! The team was qualified to enter the semi-finals--with all expenses taken care of-- held in Delaware, USA. The team showcased their talent yet again and was able to captivate the attention of the judges so much so that they dominated the title of second place. The animated Madden reiterated, “The students were placed second in the Diamond Challenge Competition. The competition started with over 700 entries and in our track we competed against approximately 370 entries from all over the world including Australia, Pakistan, Georgia and the USA. We want to thank the Board, Dr. Nelson, Mrs Walters, Mrs Christie and those staff members who gave us the support that was necessary to achieve such success. The students were very grateful for the opportunity and the experience they gained.”

Madden’s focal point, and by extension, her resilience in making this programme an unforgettable one, has been highlighted in her success of capturing the Regional  CAP Coordinator of the Year Award at the recently held CAP Awards Banquet held February 12th..  Achievements like the success of the Montego Bay Community College’s CAP programme should not go unnoticed and should be celebrated by the people of Montego Bay, Western Jamaica and by extension Jamaica. The school’s motto, ‘The end crowns the work’ and the colloquial phrase, ‘Wi likkle but wi tallawah’ can be deftly employed in these accomplishments as the team has placed the school and Jamaica on the global sphere. This competition has indicated yet again that Jamaicans are creative, innovative and dynamic individuals who work assiduously through ‘sweat, blood and tears’ to fulfil their dreams.


The spirited Dr Nelson publicly announced her excitement and lauded the achievements of the team. She expressed, “The performance from the members of the institution was outstanding in Delaware, USA over the weekend! The CAP programme has been marginalized over the years; however, these CAP students have done the College proud. I just want to laud them and impress upon them that they are the flagbearers to this institution.” Through this medium, the Board of Management, Principal and the rest of the Montego Bay Community College’s fraternity extend their heartiest congratulations to Mrs Madden and her team for an effortless job well done! Below are highlights of the competition held in Delaware, USA:


(L-R) Mr. Noel McDonald (CAP student); Mrs. Sonja Madden (CAP Coordinator) and Ms. Sophia Morris (CAP student) share a moment with the lens.

The winning team of the MBCC CAP Entrepreneurship Competition shares an exciting moment with the camera.


Kemorine Buchanan
Faculty Advisor, The Press Club

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Graduation Ceremony December 2017

Montego Bay Community College's Graduation Ceremony

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All Roads Lead to Hosanna!


“A right turn to numeracy”


 Eleven members of the Montego Bay Community College Math Club took a trip down onto memory lane, by paying visit to the well-known Hosanna Preparatory School. This club initiative served as an avenue to give back to the local community by means of mathematical reinforcement.


Math anxiety is in truth quite existent in our educational systems. This was the basis upon which The Math Club decided to venture out and tackle this stigmatized subject, by returning to the foundation - primary level education. Members of the club were sub-divided into three groups, after which each group was greatly welcomed into the grades four, five and six classrooms. Each group taught the same topic, namely ‘Fractions’, as it was described by the executive body as being a smooth-sailing fundamental topic. The club members had to therefore take steps down from their usual college mathematics in order to impart their knowledge unto the children. They incorporated lively games to enhance their teaching methods and this surely held the attention of the students.

For the fourth graders, it was like a fresh start, as they had only come into contact with the tip of the “fraction-iceberg” in the previous school year. While on the other end, it was obviously just a walk in the park for the advanced fifth and sixth graders.

Club President, Shammitha Pulikanti mentioned, “Being there in the middle of it all brought back wonderful memories from my prep school days.” She also went on further to describe her fifth grade teaching experience as fun-filled and she hopes to do such a project like this again.

Tremendous pressure is consistently placed on the Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) readiness and Hosanna Preparatory School certainly promotes great success in this area. This is due to the conducive environment created for learning provided by the educators. Each student has access to a one-on-one relationship with their teacher, who so skillfully administers the workload unto them. The spacious, well-ventilated classrooms, had creative displays of colourful and informative posters, products of students’ “works of art” (projects) and even streams of popular sayings of wisdom relating to school life along the four walls.

Brittaney Grant, math club member who helped in teaching the sixth graders, mentioned that she was at first a bit skeptical and shy about facing the class. She however overcame such feelings as soon as she realized how entertaining it was to teach such eager children.

Alongside Ms. Grant, Tivoun Wilson (Assistant Secretary), was impressed by the sixth graders enthusiasm, “Seeing how enthusiastic they were, was the highlight of my day. I was really impressed by their level of knowledge.”

All in all, the feedbacks received from the staff advisors and club members on their overall experience, generally consisted of expressions of delight and impressiveness. The purpose of the project was indeed fulfilled, as The Math Club provided their service through mathematical knowledge and ultimately strived to break the barrier of “Math Anxiety”.


                                                                                                                        Bethany Blake,

                                                                                                                        Executive Secretary,

                                                                                                                        M.B.C.C Press Club.

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