What education have you taken?
After high school, I attended the Northern Caribbean University where I pursued a Bachelor of Science in Psychology with Education as my area of emphasis. I am currently pursuing a Masters in Educational Leadership and Administration. I have had training in Supervisory Management, Records and Data Management, Risk Management, TVET Management, Applied Behaviour Analysis, and Assessor Training from various post-secondary institutions.
What accomplishments (awards, scholarships, volunteer work, organizations, memberships, etc) are you proud of?
As a volunteer, I am proud of the work that I have done over my years in community service. I am a product of a home that emphasized helping others in need. We were never raised to think that what we are blessed with is not to be taken for granted. Consequently, from an early age, my parents engaged us in community service initiatives where we provided meals and cared for the elderly, as well as the less fortunate persons in my community and surrounding communities. One of the initiatives that stuck with me for years is my parents preparing meal packages and meals every Thursday for a host of people in need. We found it so enjoyable to be making these packages as children, and doing it with so much care and diligence because it represented someone else’s survival. The preparation would start from the weekend with shopping or donations and would see its completion on Thursdays. My siblings and I were so excited that we rushed home from school every Thursday evening just so we could get to be on one of the trips that went to the people out of town. This practice continued throughout my adult life. The experience also pushed me to engage in youth leadership. I am grateful for the years that I spent in youth leadership, where I nurtured and molded so many young people through Adventurer, Pathfinder and Master Guide Clubs and youth societies. I have spearheaded many programs that rallied young people and sought to bring wellness initiatives to the communities in which I resided. I have seen the impact that the program has had on community members as they continuously sought publications that spoke to health issues and how they could adjust their lifestyle to aid in some of these issues. It also impacted the young people who carried out the work to give them direction, focus and purpose in their lives. Truly, these volunteer experiences have taught me that the relationships that we forge with people are quite important for our survival as human beings and we ought to be intentional about the care and well-being of others in our own space.
Professionally, I was nominated to be a national values icon, I was awarded as an employee of the year, and my institution received one with the highest audit ratings in the island. Based on my work ethic I was awarded the roles of Risk Champion and Change Ambassador. All these professional accolades over the year came as no surprise because my grandmother and parents always taught me to work with due diligence towards anything, even if it is to sweep the floor.
Tell us about yourself/ your background/ your history.
I was born in the seaside town of Falmouth, Jamaica to a very traditional Jamaican home – God first, and education second. I attended infant, primary, and high school in the neighbouring town of Montego Bay. From an early age I excelled academically and represented both primary and high school in academics and sports, where I received awards and scholarships. I had a very humble beginning, but I never thought of myself as poor or knew that I was poor because I was always so happy. My parents spared no expense to ensure that I got the education and opportunities that would shape me into becoming a productive citizen of the world. I have worked in the educational administrative field for many years and I find joy organizing quality systems and creating policies. I am continually amazed at the opportunities that I am given, to be a part of the lives of others and truly believe that I am blessed to be a blessing. I love the outdoors and delight in the simplicities of life as I travel and experience the diversity of people and nature.
How did you become interested in your field of study?
After high school I was mentored by a school principal who took interest in my future career. I did not want to work in a school because education was the last career choice I thought I would make. I worked with her for a year which gave me all the exposure I needed to know that I wanted to be in education. Subsequently, I moved on to university and then found my niche, not so much in the classroom, but in administrative work, where I became passionate about leadership, policies influencing curriculum, policies that would drive equal opportunities for all students, and quality systems.
What is your philosophy in life?
My attitude and vision towards life is guided by the following quotations, by E. E. Cummings and E. G. White. Though I had read them at a very early age, they still ring true and relevant.
‘True education means more than the pursual of a certain course of study. It means more than a preparation for the life that now is. It has to do with the whole being, and with the whole period of existence possible to man. It is the harmonious development of the physical, the mental, and the spiritual powers. It prepares the student for the joy of service in this world and for the higher joy of wider service in the world to come.’ E. G. White
‘To be nobody but yourself in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else – means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting’ E. E. Cummings
Where do you see yourself in the future?
My greatest dream in life is to continue to be service oriented. I definitely will continue my path in service to others whether I stay in education or evolve in other ways that will make my reach and impact greater. I want to establish and plant schools in underserved and undeveloped nations. Education and knowledge is a gift of which no person should be deprived.
Sherine is an international graduate student pursuing her Master’s in Leadership and Educational Administration. Sherine relocated to Brandon from Jamaica to complete her degree and has been an outstanding student in all of her courses. She is articulate, hard-working and intelligent. Sherine has also worked very hard as a research assistant on SSHRC funded research while completing her coursework and helped facilitate the International Student Colloquium in the Faculty of Education during the 2016-2017 academic year. Sherine has made concerted efforts to welcome new students to campus and help them adjust to living in Brandon. She plans to return to Jamaica and apply her leadership skills as a servant leader to increase her contributions in the area of technical and vocational adult education.