Spanish scholarships awarded to 2 students

From left, Erica Gordon, UCCI chair of arts and humanities, Garth Arch, honorary consul for Spain, students Lydia Ebanks and Lacey Quesada, and JD Mosley-Matchett, acting president and dean of graduate studies and professional development.

Two students from the University College of the Cayman Islands have been selected to attend a language program in Malaga, Spain, this summer.

Representing Cayman in July at the eSPEAK Academy for three weeks will be Consulate Scholarship recipients Lacey Quesada and Lydia Ebanks. This is the second time the Spanish Consulate has awarded students grants for study.

This summer, both students will have the opportunity to immerse themselves in Spanish language and culture at the heart of Andalusia, Spain.

“As honorary consul, I am happy to be able to provide this opportunity to young Caymanians, especially to those who may not have thought that such a rewarding and memorable experience would have been possible,” Garth Arch said.

Mr. Arch, Spain’s honorary consul in Cayman, said he enjoyed a similar experience in Granada, Spain, after attending university in the United States.

Scholarship recipient Ms. Quesada, a hospitality management student. said, “I believe this kind of exposure and the consistent practice of a second language would help me tremendously in both my academic and professional careers.

“I am so excited to explore Spain’s rich culture and beautiful environment, as well as to refine my skills in the Spanish language through daily interaction with locals.”

Science major Lydia Ebanks said, “The opportunity to travel to Spain, all expenses paid, is not one that I’d expect to come around often. You can’t even study online at no cost, so getting to travel to Malaga is very exciting.”

A committee from the Arts and Humanities Department reviewed Ms. Quesada’s and Ms. Ebanks’s applications, and the decision to send both students was vetted by Dean of Academic Affairs Allan Young.

“UCCI expects that the students will perform exceptionally well and be good ambassadors for us. We expect them to learn as much as they can about Spanish culture and the language while educating those with whom they interact about the Cayman Islands. We hope that they will come back and share what they have learned with the other students, who will then see that there is value in learning the language,” said Erica Gordon, department chair and coordinator of the scholarship search.

“When amazing international opportunities are brought to UCCI, it’s heartbreaking if deserving students lack the funds to take advantage of those opportunities,” UCCI’s acting president, JD Mosley-Matchett, said.

“Our nation is engaged in a global competition, and it is essential that our young people are provided with the resources to make their mark on the world stage,” she added.

The Honorary Consulate of Spain first awarded the scholarship in 2011 to UCCI student Kayla Manderson.

All funds raised from the Honorary Consulate of Spain’s cultural dinner event, “La Noche Flamenca,” went toward the scholarship.