High on the list of priorities for the University of the West Indies is Student Housing. According to Western Jamaica Campus’s Director, Dr. Luz Longsworth, “In terms of WJC, until late last year there really was no major problem, however this year we have had an unusually large intake of students. With that increase, more medical students are coming to do their rotations in Montego Bay.”
Currently underway on the Mona campus is the ‘138 Student Living’ housing project and plans for expansion of the WJC are also in the pipelines.
At present, the Buccaneer and 600 Block hold 183 spaces combined. Important to note, of that 183, 70-80 are allocated to students from the Faculty of Medical Sciences conducting their rotations at the Cornwall Regional hospital. Eight spaces allocated to staff (Lecturers) and the remaining to successful student applicants.
This allocation to the Faculty of Medical Sciences is more than mere coincidence. Truth be told, their occupancy has been a major contributing factor to the ability of WJC to afford the Buccaneer property. According to Mr. Peter O’Sullivan, Manager of the Offices Student Services Department for the WJC, without their investments, a major spike in hall fees is probable. “Medical students on rotation pay significantly more than our local students in order for us to afford the lease amount that is being paid.” He continues, “Were it not for the medical students, local students rate would probably have to go up 30, 40, 50%.”
With an influx of students from the Faculty of Medical Sciences contributing in more ways than one, now more than ever, the need to break ground in Hartmont and the Barnet Estate is of dire concern.
Image credit: @AndraeAdenji
Dane S. Lewis
WJC Insider Writer