The Council of Community Colleges of Jamaica (CCCJ) will host its annual conference from June 7-9 under the theme ‘[email protected]:Transforming Lives: Embracing Student-Centredness’. Story Highlights The conference, which forms part of the Council’s 15th anniversary celebrations, will be held at Hyatt Ziva Rose Hall in Montego Bay, St. James. The Council of Community Colleges of Jamaica (CCCJ) will host its annual conference from June 7-9 under the theme ‘[email protected]:Transforming Lives: Embracing Student-Centredness’.The conference, which forms part of the Council’s 15th anniversary celebrations, will be held at Hyatt Ziva Rose Hall in Montego Bay, St. James.Addressing a JIS ‘Think Tank’ recently, Executive Director of the CCCJ, Dr. Donna Powell Wilson, said in all that the Council does, the students are their focal point.Therefore, some of the conference topics will be: maintaining a student-friendly environment, diversity in the tertiary environment, learning to learn, social media in the teaching and learning process, CCCJ platform to higher education, and encouraging a healthy lifestyle.“Students are our clients, so we have to ensure that they are satisfied,” Dr. Powell Wilson said, adding that some of the conference features will include: panel discussions, exhibits, plenary sessions, presentations, networking and demonstrations.“What is important about this year’s event is that we will have more presentations from faculties within the community colleges and increased student participation, because we want to hear from our students,” she said. Keynote speaker will be Dr. Cynthia Wilson from the League Innovation Community Colleges in the United States of America (USA), who is an expert in community college education.Dr. Powell Wilson pointed out that the conference will have both local and international presenters.The highlight of the conference will be the culmination of a Community College Software Development Competition, where students will be presenting software that they have developed over the past three years. Other activities for the anniversary celebrations are the CCCJ expo, scheduled to take place in August, and a banquet to be held in December.There are eight community colleges in Jamaica operating from 25 campuses across the island. They are Bethlehem Moravian College, St. Elizabeth; Brown’s Town Community College, St. Ann; Moneague College, St. Ann; the College of Agriculture, Science and Education (CASE), Portland; Excelsior Community College, Kingston; Montego Bay Community College, St. James; Portmore Community College, St. Catherine; and Knox Community College in Clarendon.Sponsors for the conference include Monroe College in the USA, Jamaica Copyright Licensing Agency (JAMCOPY), E-Tech Solutions Corporation, EBSCO Information Services and others. The highlight of the conference will be the culmination of a Community College Software Development Competition, where students will be presenting software that they have developed over the past three years. Other activities for the anniversary celebrations are the CCCJ expo, scheduled to take place in August, and a banquet to be held in December.
Story Highlights Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, on Tuesday (September 12), tabled the long-awaited Special Economic Zones (SEZs) Regulations in the House of Representatives. Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, on Tuesday (September 12), tabled the long-awaited Special Economic Zones (SEZs) Regulations in the House of Representatives.The Regulations are intended to drive the SEZs, which are expected to open up significant economic opportunities for Jamaicans in terms of employment-generation, manufacturing, small-business development and foreign exchange earnings.The rules do not require any affirmative resolution and will be signed by the relevant Minister to become part of the law.“The players in the industry have been waiting on these to be tabled, so it is important that it doesn’t just pass silently into law, but at least something is said to alert the country and the players that we have now completed a very important part of the framework,” Mr. Holness said.SEZs represent a wide variety of geographically demarcated areas that offer simple and efficient business regulations and procedures for investors.The Special Economic Zones Act, which came into force on August 1, 2016, provides for the designation, promotion, development, operation, and management of the zones, the establishment of aSpecial Economic Zone Authority, and the granting of incentives in order to attract domestic and foreign investments.Prime Minister Holness noted that the Administration is seeking to create a business-friendly environment, with the requisite governance in place.“We have to strike the balance and to ensure the required interconnectivity to drive us forward. It is this relationship among a range of service providers, infrastructure developers, providers of goods and technology and services that will ensure the linkages in our economy, to ensure or growth and job creation success,” he said. The Regulations are intended to drive the SEZs, which are expected to open up significant economic opportunities for Jamaicans in terms of employment-generation, manufacturing, small-business development and foreign exchange earnings. SEZs represent a wide variety of geographically demarcated areas that offer simple and efficient business regulations and procedures for investors. read more
zoom With daily advances in technology, it is unsurprising that the complete sensory experience that is ‘virtual reality’ has such an impact on our lives. No longer just a tool used to draw in the online gamer or consumer, this exciting piece of technology has started to influence, and enhance, the possibilities in ship design and construction. Imagine a one-stop shop for maritime engineering, where you can find all disciplines on Technical University and higher vocational education level, and be able to truly interact: Utopia for most ship owners.“The challenge is to break the stereotype of the shipbuilding industry being a traditional craft,” explains Cor Lettenga, Managing Director of DEKC Maritime B.V.“By utilising the easily accessible platforms accepted for modern day gaming consoles, our company has found a way to make our extensive knowledge more readily available to the shipbuilding and shipping market. Converting complete 3D ship models into a gaming platform means the client can literally ‘walk through’ their future vessel to experience the functionality of the design. They don’t require high-end computers, dedicated design software or viewers – simply any gaming console in combination with a virtual reality headset.”Evolutions in name and knowledgeInitiated in 1972 as an integrated detail-engineering department of a renowned Groningen manufacturer of steel building kits, the semi-independent engineering company launched as an independent divestiture in October 1990. After several name changes, they became DEKC (Design Engineering Knowledge Center) Maritime in July 2017.“The latest name change is due to change in ownership. With this turnaround, we were given the chance to supplement our scope – to allow for a one-stop shopping experience for maritime design knowledge, unique in the Netherlands. Offering the complete package of design, engineering and operational support services, our company is based on four pillars: Naval Architecture, Structural Design, Detail Engineering and Mechanical Engineering. We do not envisage growth, but rather promote stability, quality, and strong client relationships,” Lettenga added.Addressing the needs of the industry“Offering clients this convenient one-stop shop concept allows them to choose from a wide range of maritime engineering services, which even includes operational support for ships or offshore vessels/units already in service,” Cor Lettenga explains.“It’s what shipping companies, operators and ship owners are looking for. The benefit for the client is having a reliable partner, providing convenient and efficient services, saving them a lot of time and effort compared to visiting a separate institution for each area of need. It also gives them a sense of flexibility, having an ‘expert external co-maker’ available on call, whilst not having to invest in the expansion of their own resources.”All involved types of work and technical disciplines, including programme management, planning, and work preparation, are fully integrated and coordinated by DEKC. Clients benefit by having one point of contact and the process with all associated communication, is taken out of their hands. There are also savings to be made by investing in a total package from one supplier. In short: complete care.Experience the design functionalityLettenga summarises: “Virtual reality is developing fast, and in five to ten years it will be an integral part of people’s lives. We are already seeing these developments within the consumer markets for kitchens and cars. In modern day shopping, people want to walk around a real size, 3D kitchen set-up, and interact with objects. Likewise, when buying a car, it is very common that we use a car configurator.“These same technologies should become available in day-to-day shipbuilding practice, and we combine these modern technologies with the skills and craftsmanship of 45 years of experience. This expansion to a more customer-oriented way of working was made in the name of co-creation. Virtual reality engineering embraces 3D modelling tools and visualisation techniques as part of the design process. “Enabling people to view their project in 3D, and gain a greater understanding of how it works, gives ample opportunity to spot any flaws, or potential risks, prior to execution. With regular review at various stages to check for faults, structural weaknesses, and other design issues, virtual reality can assist throughout the entire design lifecycle – from initial concept, through to build, implementation and operation.”This article was previously published in Maritime Holland edition #4– 2017.,This article was previously published in Maritime Holland edition #4– 2017. read more
Point Foundation (Point) will honor producer and broadcast executive Michael Lombardo with the Point Impact Award at the organization’s annual Point Honors Los Angeles gala October 1.Point presents its Impact Award to an individual who has made a significant impact on improving the lives of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) community.During Lombardo’s decade-long tenure as President, Programming, for Home Box Office, the network launched some of its most successful series, including “True Blood,” “Game of Thrones,” “Girls,” “Veep,” and “Looking.” Lombardo, who first joined HBO in 1983, continues to develop creative projects for HBO as a producer.“As someone in arts and entertainment, I am drawn to engaging stories about people. But not being able to get a college education because you’ve come out to family and friends as gay, lesbian, bi or trans, should not have to be part of anyone’s life story,” said Lombardo. “Thankfully Point Foundation makes it possible for LGBT young people to live a different story, one where they get their college degree and go on to become doctors, lawyers, filmmakers; whatever their ambition. It is a story of hope I’m honored to support.”“Michael Lombardo, in his leadership role at HBO, has brought more realistic LGBTQ characters to TV in the last decade than anyone else. Many young people have grown up finding reflections of themselves in LGBTQ characters featured in the shows he has helped develop,” said Jorge Valencia, Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer of Point Foundation. “As an openly gay man who has earned the respect of everyone in his profession, Michael is an inspiration to Point Scholars and Alumni, and a good friend of Point.” Past honorees recognized by Point include Jeffrey Tambor, Lena Dunham, Jonathan Groff, and other allies and members of the LGBTQ community. Additional celebrity participation for the October 1 Point Honors event will be announced in the coming weeks. Information about attending or supporting Point Honors is at www.pointfoundation.org/LAHonors.Point Foundation is the nation’s largest scholarship-granting organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer LGBTQ students of merit. Some of Point’s 84 current scholarship recipients and 244 alumni will be present at the event to share with the audience their inspiring stories about how they have overcome challenges to get their higher education degrees. read more