WI are more than just cricket…

IMG_0629(Photo Courtesy: West Indies Cricket Board)

I graduated from university a couple years ago and I made the decision that I needed a break from academics before I pursued my Master’s degree. But this past week I would have given anything to be an undergraduate student at the University of the West Indies (UWI) Mona campus. The UWI through the Caribbean Institute of Media and Communications (CARIMAC)  and the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) signed a Memorandum of Understanding for five bursaries beginning September 2017. Head of CARIMAC, Professor Hopeton Dunn says “the programme is geared towards affording students with a specific interest in cricket as they pursue further education in Media/ Communications programmes to include undergraduate studies in Integrated Marketing Communication, Journalism (Radio, Television, Print and Online) and Digital Media Production.'” The MOU has prompted CARIMAC to add two new courses in the short term – Cricket Commentary and Analytics and Sport Culture and Caribbean Media which will be offered in the new academic year.

Being a Sports Journalist for the past 3 years, I’ve covered lots of different sports, as far as Sydney, Australia in 2015 for the Netball World Cup where Trinidad & Tobago participated. But my love has ALWAYS BEEN and WILL ALWAYS BE cricket, particularly WEST INDIES Cricket. So you see my grouse when this educational partnership and opportunity was announced.

The five bursaries are being named in honour of five Caribbean media stalwarts. The honourees are the late Roy Lawrence and Tony Cozier; Tony Becca, Headley Samuels and Joseph Perreira. Men who have been the voices and words of West Indies cricket from time immemorial. The opportunity goes further, as President of the WICB, Dave Cameron said  “the students who get selected for the bursaries will have access to work experience in WICB’s international and regional series and with other partners where applicable.” All undergraduates who are eligible for these bursaries should be rushing forward to grasp at the opportunities, I know I would have.

IMG_0614(Photo Courtesy: West Indies Cricket Board)

This partnership is something innovative and promising as it has never been done before in the long history of both the UWI and WICB. The West Indies Cricket Board is showing that it means business in developing cricket in the Caribbean, not just the 11 players on the field but all West Indians. Not all boys and girls are cut out to be cricketers but they still love the sport, this now, is their chance to be a part of WI game and WI culture. The WICB is reaching out to the future generations and ensuring that “WI are all in”.

Australia, England and the other cricket superpowers are all building cricket from off the field. They are engaging some of the most brilliant minds and enthusiasts to grow the game via the development of cricket software and applications to engaging them in internships with office administration or as team assistants. And now, the WICB following suit, taking its first steps in ensuring that the coverage of West Indies Cricket and its traditions are passed on to competent, qualified and most importantly, PASSIONATE individuals.

So I’ll sit here, behind my computer and write this blog, still SOUR because I am not an undergrad student at CARIMAC at the UWI, Mona Jamaica.

But sour as I may be, I will NEVER love West Indies Cricket any less. One Love…

“Rally… NOW… and forevermore, Rally round the WEST INDIES”.

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