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UTT to grant doctorates to Clarke and Spence

Trinidad Express
Wednesday, January 13 2010
Julien Neaves jneaves@trinidadexpress.com

FORMER president Sir Ellis Clarke and agriculture expert Prof John Spence will be receiving honorary doctorates from The University of Trinidad and Tobago (UTT) at a graduation ceremony on Saturday to be held at their O’Meara Campus, Arima.

UTT president Prof Ken Julien made the announcement yesterday at a press conference held at the National Academy for the Performing Arts (NAPA) in Port of Spain.

He noted that Clarke, a former governor general and first president of the T&T, ’has served the country over several years in several capacities’. Clarke was one of the first to be awarded this country’s highest honour, the Trinity Cross, in 1969.

Spence, who has received a Chaconia Gold National Award, is a former dean of the faculty of Agriculture at the University of the West Indies and is also an Express columnist.

At the press conference, UTT vice president Oliver Flax said that NAPA will be opening its doors in September and will be offering the following:

- Bachelor of Fine Arts in Acting, Music (Caribbean, Indian Classical, Western Classical, Jazz), Dance, Design Technology and Management,

- Diploma (two years) in Music, Production Management, Sound Technology

- Certificate (one year) in Indian Classical, Steelpan and Music Literacy.

Flax and other officials gave the media a tour of the facility which includes two dance halls, 30 classrooms and two mini theatres.

He said 26 staff members, both local and foreign, have been recruited, though they need more teachers in theatre and dance.

Classes in the seven disciplines are expected to have between 15 to 20 students. Consultant to the dance programme, Sonja Dumas, said they wanted a small student-to-teacher ratio so students can ’receive the biggest satisfaction and best attention’.

Programme professor Katy Gainham, who is from the UK, invited students to sign up, stressing it was not about academic qualifications but talent, motivation and potential.

’If you have a talent come and develop it,’ said Flax.

To contact UTT call 642-8888 ext 27100 and hold for an answer.