Government Assists COB Athletic Students
NASSAU, The Bahamas — Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture the Hon Charles Maynard presented The College of The Bahamas Interim President Dr Earla Carey Baines with a $100,000 Grant-Aide cheque for the National Hall of Fame Student Athlete Award at a press conference, Monday, September 20.
“For the past three years, the Government has teamed up with The College of The Bahamas to offer funding for scholarships, particularly for Family Island students who have ability in sports, to get their education paid for while training at home at COB,” Mr Maynard said.
The programme has helped athletes who may not have had the funds to receive a tertiary education, he said.
“It has also helped some of our local federations in terms of having these athletes able to live in Nassau, train and compete on national teams rather than being a part of universities in the rest of the world.”
Dr Carey Baines said the grant from the Government bolsters COB’s efforts to recruit and retain exceptional athletes who are pursuing higher education at the College in a range of disciplines from biochemistry and nursing to communications, psychology, education and computer information systems.
“They are doing this while maintaining a keenly competitive schedule as members of our eight varsity teams – men’s and women’s basketball, soccer, track & field and volleyball,” she said.
“Most of these teams have been competing against colleges and universities in Florida.”
Dr Carey Baines noted that 20 new student-athletes joined the college’s athletics teams during the 2010 fall term.
“The members of our freshman class, whom we introduced two weeks ago, have distinguished themselves in a cross-section of sporting disciplines including basketball, soccer and track and field and a few of them have also represented The Bahamas in regional competitions.”
She said the new class includes the college’s first group of Family Island student athletes from the Preston Albury High School and North Andros High School.
Long jumper Tamara Myers, from North Andros High is a recent silver medallist in the CARIFTA games and five athletes, based on their academic achievements in the BGCSE results, have earned academic funding from the Ministry of Education.
Dr Carey Baines added that this year alone, the college has had six of its student-athletes represent the country at various international tournaments; five in track and field and one in volleyball.
“The fact that we are now starting to feed athletes into the national sporting teams speaks volumes about the calibre of our student-athletes, our coaches and our developing athletics programme, she said.
The money given by the Government will go toward helping student athletes with tuition and books.
In addition, funding has been directed toward housing for students coming from the Family Islands.
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