Forty years of university education
November 1, 2003
THE University of Guyana is celebrating its 40th anniversary with a series of activities that include a cricket match tomorrow at the GCC Ground, Bourda.
The match, we understand, will see some of our cricketing stars in action. The list includes former West Indies test players Gordon Greenidge, Roger Harper and Bernard Julien.
This match, a release states, is aimed at "reconnecting not only with past and present students, but also with the Guyanese community and the wider Caribbean cricketing fraternity."
Like the University of Guyana, cricket has been a major institution, which has brought glory and pride not only to those who play the game but also to the society as a whole. Guyanese, like most West Indians, take their cricket seriously and stand by their players, both in times of victory and defeat.
The connection between cricket and university education is not without some significance.
For any society to grow and prosper it must seek to achieve the highest levels of academic excellence, especially in this knowledge-based society in which competition is the name of the game.
The key to success, both at the individual and at the national level, depends on the ability to compete in an environment that is becoming increasingly competitive.
The same is true of cricket. Nowhere is this manifested more intensely as during the World Cup Cricket series, characterized by intense rivalry among the cricketing greats. Guyanese are virtually glued to their television sets hoping and praying that their boys will not let them down in the battle for supremacy in the game.
If all goes well Guyanese may be able to see, for the first time, World Cup Cricket scheduled for the Caribbean in 2007 right here in Guyana. This will be a major boost for the country and, more particularly, the tens of thousands of Guyanese who belong to the cricketing fraternity.
There is no doubt that we have come a long way in the area of sports and academic excellence. Research has shown that there is a positive correlation between fitness and academic performance.
In this regard, full credit is due to those who saw the need for the creation of our own university. There can be do doubt that the university has lived up admirably to the expectations of those who envision a society in which there is equal opportunity for all to access education at the highest level.
As we celebrate the success of the university over the past four decades, let us spare a thought for the late Dr. Cheddi Jagan, whose brainchild it was, and for his steadfastness and resolve in pressing ahead with the university, despite strong opposition by his detractors.