International College of the Cayman Islands President David Marshall has dug into his own pockets with a $10,000 donation to help pay for improvements at the school.
Now he is encouraging business leaders and college alumni to do the same as he kicks off a new fundraising campaign.
The ICCI Board of Trustees has matched Dr. Marshall’s donation as the college seeks to increase funding as part of a wider drive to improve standards and accountability.
“I think people have to put their money where the mouth is,” said Dr. Marshall, who hopes to raise at least $100,000 to help fund student scholarships, technology upgrades and a new accounting position.
He added, “It’s not enough to say you support the education of young people. I think you have to show that support by digging in your wallet personally to make sure young people have a chance to get where you are.
“Corporate donations are great, but when it gets down to it, individuals on the island also should be making personal contributions to higher education causes.”
Dr. Marshall plans to talk directly to some of the college’s former students who have gone on to successful careers and ask them for donations.
“This meeting on August 17 is a real heart-to-heart with the scores of alumni out there who have done well. It is now time for them to reach back and provide opportunities for current students through donations to improve teaching and learning and to provide scholarships,” he said.
The president, who took over the college in March, has introduced new tougher criteria for scholarship students and says he aims to reform the school’s offering to ensure graduates are able to get good jobs or promotions because of their studies at ICCI.
“The new jobs coming to Cayman will require a workforce with outstanding critical thinking skills, excellent communication skills, and exceptional competencies in math, technology, science, and engineering. There is no other way to produce this workforce other than getting more young people to complete college with the skills employers need,” he said.
“These are the country’s future leaders; they deserve the best,” he said.
Dr. Marshall added that he would be getting on the phone personally to talk to business leaders about the changes at the college and urge them to help.