||Central Bank Of Barbados
Sheldon Shepherd, a final year Economics and Finance
student at the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill, is the 2017 Roland
Craigwell Memorial Scholar. The Central Bank of Barbados-offered scholarship
provides a $8,000 cash prize and a three-month internship at the organisation.
“I never had a chance to meet Roland Craigwell, but
from hearing some of the stories about him and from reading some of his papers
– the contribution he made to not only Barbados but also the Caribbean as a
whole, it’s very humbling to win a scholarship in his name. It’s very humbling
and very inspiring at the same time,” the 26-year old scholarship winner said
while discussing the award. “To win something like this makes me feel good and
is a validation of the hard work I had to put in in the past three years.”
The former Louis Lynch Secondary student admitted that
initially his dream had been to be an accountant, but that when Louis Lynch closed
and he transferred to Harrison College, his Accounts teacher there, Kelly Ward,
introduced the class to the market demand and supply model, which kindled his
interest in economics.
He also credits the education he received while
studying at the Barbados Community College (BCC) and in particular the tutelage
of Margaret Scott-Thompson for setting him on his current path. “Sitting in Ms.
Scott-Thompson’s Intro to Micro [Microeconomics] class, I started to blossom…
that’s where my foundation really began.”
After graduating from the Barbados Community College,
Shepherd worked for four years before applying to university. His intention
when he did register was to pursue a degree in Banking and Finance, but an
oversight in his application forced him to have to redo some of the Economics
courses he had previously done at BCC. It was while retaking introductory
courses in micro- and macroeconomics that he was reminded of his love for the
field. He switched his major to Economics and Finance, a programme that had
only recently been introduced.
Shepherd was full of praise for the faculty of the
Economics Department at UWI, Cave Hill. He identified Anderson “Ras” Elcock,
Dr. Troy Lorde, Dr. Michael Brei, Dr. Clyde Mascoll, and Professor Nlandu Mamingi - whom he called “the godfather
of econometrics” - by name, but revealed that all his lecturers were approachable
and willing to help, even with queries related to courses they did not teach.
After three years of intense study, Shepherd is even
more passionate about economics. He is now looking forward to his stint this
summer at the Central Bank. “I think the internship is going to give me a
practical application of the theory I have been taught and will help me to grow
as a budding economist.” In the long term, he wants to have a career in
International Finance for Development. “I’m looking to see how developing our
local capital markets can help develop not only Barbados but the Caribbean
Craigwell Memorial Scholarship is open to second and final year Barbadian
students at the UWI, Cave Hill, who are pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree
in Economics or a combined degree in Economics and a related discipline. The
scholarship has been offered since 1996 and was previously called the Central
Bank of Barbados Scholarship.