Cayman students Aleigha General and Ayanna Davis-Eden will be attending schools in Asia this year after they were selected as the 2019 United World College scholars.
The UWC Cayman Islands board of directors and national committee announced on Monday that Aleigha, 16, will attend Li Po Chun UWC in Hong Kong and Ayanna, 15, will attend UWC Thailand.
“It is inspiring to receive applications from some of Cayman’s best students each year,” said Martina Jackson, chair of this year’s selection committee. “Aleigha and Ayanna both stood out as individuals who not only have strong academic abilities and are involved in the community, but individuals who also have a strong passion for the future of the Cayman Islands and will represent our country well.”
Studying for the rigorous two-year International Baccalaureate Diploma, Aleigha and Ayanna will live and study overseas alongside other young people from diverse cultures and backgrounds.
Aleigha, who is currently a student at John Gray High School, is in the top 10% of students in her year group and is the school’s deputy head girl. Aleigha devotes much of her time outside the classroom participating in Junior Achievement, Key Club, Cadets and Leo’s Club. She volunteers for organisations such as Cayman Animal Rescue Enthusiasts and the Humane Society, and this passion for her community and animals has led her to pursue a career in veterinary medicine. She hopes to open her own veterinary clinic in the Cayman Islands.
Ayanna attends Triple C High School and enjoys filmmaking and cooking. She is a featured presenter on Radio Cayman’s YouthFlex show and has volunteered time working backstage at theatre shows performed at the Harquail Theatre. In 2018, Ayanna and a partner competed in the Caribbean Junior Duelling Challenge in Barbados where she won gold for both her plates and placed second out of nine teams from across the Caribbean region. Her passion for the arts has led her to pursue a career in film production.
According to a press release from United World College, the UWC’s mission is to use “education as a force to unite young people for peace and a sustainable future”.
“We were delighted to also work with the colleges and our foundation to award scholarship funding to each of our new scholars, ensuring our selection process continues to be carried out entirely on the basis of merit,” said chair of UWC Cayman Islands Aubrey Bodden. “Fundraising activities, direct financial support offered by the colleges on an as-needed basis, and grants from long-standing local donors such as the Maples Group and Aall Foundation ensure cost is never a barrier to the most deserving students accessing a UWC education.”
Other students from Cayman who are at UWC schools abroad are Fenna Madison, who is attending UWC ISAK Japan; Mark Plowright at UWC Adriatic; Juliana Gaspar at UWC-USA in New Mexico, Elijah Samson at Li Po Chun UWC in Hong Kong; Marley McCoy at Pearson College UWC in Victoria, Canada; and Courtney Thomas at UWC Maastricht in Holland.