"Many Studies, One Brotherhood"
Life beyond secondary school can be a very daunting experience. For many it is necessary to experience a safe and steady transition into the responsibilities of further education and the world of work.
The Barbados Community College (BCC) allows students of all ages and all walks of life to study for certificates and degrees in an encouraging and comfortable environment and prepares them for the challenge's they may face in pursuit of their career.
The college was officially established by an act of parliament called the Barbados Community College Act 1968-23. The college was originally set up to provide education and training in the areas of Agriculture, Commerce, Fine Arts, Liberal Arts, Science and Technology.
More than 300 students started with the college, now more than 3000 attend. Since its opening in January 1969, the number of the college's divisions has expanded to include Health Sciences, Computer Studies, Physical Education, The Language Centre and the division of General and Continuing Education.
The college has also established a centre for Hospitality Studies at The Pommerine Hospitality Institute, located off-campus.
Each division offers diverse areas of study which are either offered as a total programme or to be chosen as majors for full-time or part-time study.
There is a vast number of options including studies in:
» Environmental Health Studies
» Sociology and English
» Graphic Design
» Fashion Design
» Visual Arts
» Dance and Theatre
Languages offered include Spanish, French and Italian. BCC is also the only tertiary institution which offers Sports Management.
The division of General and Continuing Education (GEED) offers programmes in Mass Communications, Psychology, Nutrition and Healthy Lifestyle as well as other interesting 'electives'; courses which can be chosen to enhance your study.
There are also subject areas such as:
» Information Technology
» Mechanical Engineering
» Culinary Arts
» Tourism and numerous others.
Students can utilise college facilities such as the well equipped Library and the Counselling and Placement Centre which, "provides counselling, job placements, overseas educational advisement, computer access, community outreach activities and a career and research library."
Students also have the opportunity to join several organisations such as:
» The Students Guild
» Circle K Club
» The University & College's Christian Fellowship (U.C.C.F)
» The Political Society Association
Taking part in sports after school or for BCC Sports (February- April) is also emphasised and many students enjoy participating in Basketball, Volleyball, Cricket, outdoor and indoor Football, Tennis and many more. Not an athlete? BCC students are excited supporters and the cheerleading competition is a much anticipated event.
The college continues to expand with the implementation of the University College of Barbados (UCB): an amalgamation of The Samuel Jackman Prescod Polytechnic and The Erdiston Teaching School.
The construction of the new Language Centre is near completion, and the class room extension in the 'Science Block' will soon be filled with students. "These are just a few of the many changes to come...." says Deputy Principal Dr. Sylvia Hackett.
The college pledges in their mission statement that they will develop the 'physical, intellectual and social development' of their students, to further contribute to the advancement of the local, regional and international community.
The school aids in fulfilling this mission by offering scholarships, grants and loans to help finance a valuable education.
Science student Brigitte Toppin shares ups and downs of the BCC experience, "It's an increased workload but that's to be expected when you go up a level ...when things get hard though, your old and new friends ....from Barbados and other countries are there for you. The school understands your frustration .....they'll take the time to hear you out."
For more information on the Barbados Community College (BCC) visit www.bcc.edu.bb.
Author: Brett Callaghan