UWI pro-vice chancellor and principal Professor Brian Copeland

After a two year delay, the University of the West Indies South Campus is finally ready to be opened for the September 2020 academic term.

Principal Brian Copeland made this revelation in a letter sent to Oropouche East MP Dr Roodal Moonilal on Wednesday.

Moonilal had written to Copeland since September last year requesting details on when the campus will be opening.

In response, Copeland said the UWI is well-positioned to begin operations from September 2020.

“There will be an initial mix of programme offerings from the Faculty of Humanities and Education, Science and Technology, Food and Agriculture and Medical Sciences. The UWI Roytech will also be operating its south-based programmes from the UWISC beginning in September 2020,” Copeland added.

He explained that the team responsible for operations art the UWISCC has been working closely with the Penal/Debe Regional Corporation and the Penal/Debe Chamber to engage with key stakeholders in the area and identify opportunities for public/private partnerships.

“In fact, this year we presented the PDRC with a draft MOU which we hope can be signed in short order. The MOU will reflect discussions held with the chairman, chief executive officer and other members of the PDRC on areas of collaboration including areas of technical/functional cooperation and capacity building,” Copeland added.

He said a similar MOU will be presented to the Chamber for its consideration and “that MOU will also reflect the spirit and scope of ongoing discussions between the UWISC and the Chamber President.”

“It is my hope that you would accept our invitation to tour the UWISC at a mutually convenient date in the near future,” Copeland said.

Contacted for comment, Moonilal said he was looking forward to the campus opening.

“I have received the letter dated Feb 26 but remain cautious since the UWI has promised to open this facility since September 2018. The academic programmes keep changing and now there is a planned relocation of Roytec programmes for the UWI. I will believe it when I see it—a graduating class could have left that campus by now had they completed the facility in 2017 as proposed,” Moonilal said.

Chairman of the Corporation Dr Allen Sammy, also weighed in.

He said several promises were made in the past about the campus opening and none had materialized.

“I am not holding my breath. When it’s done, I will believe it,” Sammy declared.

He said the campus had the potential to revitalize economic and social activities in the southern region.