To mark its silver anniversary, TIP Friendly Society – the friendly society for employees in the education sector – has contributed $3.86 million in scholarships to 54 students for the current school term.
In addition, a member of the Friendly Society, Fabian Wainwright, Education Officer at the Ministry of Education was the successful recipient of the TIP President’s 25th Anniversary Scholarship Award in the amount of $200,000.
The recipients were presented with their cheques at a Scholarship Awards Ceremony on Monday, September 26 at the Terra Nova.
Among the scholarship awardees are 28 top boys and top girls in the PEP examinations per parish; five children of staff members; six repeat PEP awardees; seven undergraduates, six postgraduate students and two education grants.
Since the launch of the TIP Friendly Society Scholarship Awards programme in 2002, more than 950 students have benefitted.
Guest speaker, Jazeel Martin, Associate of Myers, Fletcher & Gordon, kept his audience spellbound with his “rags to riches’ story. He illustrated his times when he lacked money and food as a student from August Town, St Andrew attending St George’s College.
“But my mother taught me to put on a brave face and not tell people my business,” he said to nods of agreement from the adults in the audience. To illustrate the point that when in such circumstances persons have to do what they have to do to survive, he spoke about cleaning houses for the upper echelon where he was paid premium rates, because of his diligence to the job.
Judy Miller-Smith (left), Marketing Manager, TIP Friendly Society presents a plaque with the words “Everything you do, do it for the greater glory of God” to guest speaker Jezeel Martin at the TIP Friendly Scholarship Awards Ceremony at the Terra Nova Hotel
In addition, Martin said his movement up the education ladder was only possible through the altruism of several persons, who covered his school fees, books, transport and lunch. He benefited from these contributions right up to the tertiary level of studies at the University of the West Indies and then Norman Manley Law School.
“About three months before I graduated from law school, two of the most prestigious law firms in Jamaica offered me jobs and I took the one at Myers, Fletcher & Gordon,” he related.
He is now serving five years with that prestigious law firm; having worked on some major transactions, including a US$2 billion deal. At 26 years old, he owns a 4-bedroom house in a sought-after residential community and credits his success to his mother’s cheerleading and God’s mercies.
“I am telling you my personal story, not to brag and boast, but I want you to know that although your circumstances can be challenging now, you must remain focused and not yield to distractions because you can be whatever you want to be no matter where you come from,” he noted.