Message from the Vice-Chancellor - International Women's Day 2020 | Saluting our UWI Women

The UN recognises 2020 as a pivotal year for advancing gender equality worldwide, as the global community takes stock of progress made for women’s rights.

As an institution, for over 71 years we have been witness to UWI women making remarkable strides in this cause, through widespread and lasting contributions in the Caribbean region and wider world. This includes women who have worked, or been educated here at our world-class university.

I expect that our University’s progressive movement toward gender mainstreaming through the adoption of The UWI gender policy will continue to provide a platform for greater development in gender equality and more specifically, women’s rights in the region.

In the meantime, it is pivotal that we take time to celebrate progress. In the last year in particular, we’ve proudly welcomed more female faculty and staff to top leadership positions within the institution, achieving firsts in some instances, and seen others recognised with top honours regionally and internationally. Among these, it is significant that our distinguished colleague, Professor V. Eudine Barriteau, a stalwart in gender and the women’s rights movement in The UWI, the region and world, this year received Barbados’ newest and highest national honour – the Order of the Freedom of Barbados. With this award, she is addressed as “The Most Honourable”. We also celebrate female students across our campuses who have risen to the highest student leadership posts and alumna who have earned major accolades across various disciplines.

We salute all our UWI women and look forward to seeing women’s rights and gender equality continue to take centre stage in 2020.

Professor Sir Hilary Beckles