Speaking at the official opening ceremony of the University’s campus at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre over the weekend, Minister of Education, Technological and Vocational Training Santia Bradshaw disclosed that the Ministry had started discussions with the university, long before the opening, about having local students attend the medical school.
Additionally, she said they were also in discussions about possible synergies between the Barbados Community College and Chamberlain University – one of the universities which fall under the umbrella of Adtalem Global Education, Ross’ parent company – to improve the quality of the College’s local nursing programme.
“We consider it a privilege to have an accredited private medical school join our academic fraternity and while the economic impact may be apparent, your commitment to collaborative research and development alongside our local tertiary institutions aligns well with our strategic goal to provide wider access to allied health programmes in Barbados.
“Ross University School of Medicine will certainly contribute to Barbados moving forward the modernization of our community healthcare structures, while at the same time becoming a stronger competitor in the global health education arena,” the Minister told the audience of local officials and representatives from Adtalem Global Education.
Bradshaw said the partnership with Ross University was one that brought with it “very high expectations” and opportunities, adding that Barbados was chosen as the location for Ross’ flagship school because of its strength, diversity and amenities.
She also pointed out that the Ministry would be holding the Medical School to account “as we expect you to do the same with us”.
“Let me temper my welcome and well wishes with a caution. In Barbados, we continue to strive to improve our standards of excellence in systems, accreditation and expectations. We’ve come to expect excellence not only for performance in the classroom but in the character of those who operate within our boundaries…
“You are about to devote an enormous amount of resources, energy and time to producing doctors. And, most of your students will complete their courses of study successfully but the true essence of their greatness will be in the skills not found in the medical books. You will influence the level of empathy expressed, the respect for life and patient choice and the importance of being earnest. Please don’t leave these human markers behind,” the Education Minister urged.
She said the Ministry and Ross University would work together to protect the expectations of Ross students and local students, noting that the future of both entities was “meshed in a pursuit of high ideals and medical successes for students and faculty working together”.