National donates 50 tablets to tertiary students
Several students have received electronic tablets as a donation to continue their online education during the COVID-19 pandemic. The National Baking Company gave a helping hand through The University of the West Indies Development and Endowment Fund (UWIDEF) by offering 50 tablets to tertiary students to support the transition to online learning.
With the donations, these students will get the chance to log on to the distance-learning programmes and new online class schedules now offered by the university.
Georgia Houston, a graduate student from St Catherine studying international public and development management, is among the beneficiaries. The mother of three found it extremely burdensome to not only homeschool her children, but to balance working from home while completing her graduate degree online without an appropriate device.
“When I heard that I would receive a tablet it was a relief because I purchased a Chromebook for one of my children as the high school she attends requires it, so I couldn’t have made that kind of investment twice. I can’t share it with her because when she’s not attending online classes, she still has assignments to complete outside of school hours,” she said.
In expressing her gratitude, Houston said she is thankful to National and the UWIDEF. “The tablet has provided me with access to my lectures, so I can finish my last two courses and my final research paper.”
Another student who faced challenges with online learning is SeanMichael Barnett, a first-year medical sciences student.
“It was quite challenging because I only had my phone, so I couldn’t multitask or interact with my lecturer properly because my phone doesn’t have a large keyboard like a computer or tablet; it made it difficult to transition to online school. Another issue I had was downloading lectures using my phone. So now, with the tablet, I’m able to have much more storage space to download and store a full load of materials.”