‘Better late than never’ – Guyanese excels at UWI, placed on Honour Roll

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It is never too late!

Not only did 31-year-old Claudette Hazlewood-Robertson secure her spot at the University of the West Indies (UWI) Five Islands Campus in Antigua and Barbuda, but she completed her first year with a 4.05 GPA and was placed on the Principal’s Honour Roll.

The mother of one says she was surprised when she learned of her performance.

“The Principal’s Honour Roll is basically where they honour the student with the highest overall GPA, so I was awarded the Principal’s Honour for being the first-year student with the highest overall GPA across all the faculties,” Claudette told the News Room.

Claudette who lives in Antigua is from Cumberland, East Canje Berbice. She graduated from high school 15 years ago and never pursued any higher education.

She also passed only six of the eight subjects she wrote at the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate. To put it simply, Claudette did not believe she could do so well.

Claudette Hazlewood-Robertson receives her Honour Roll certificate

When she was accepted into UWI a year ago, she was only accepted as a part-time student and given ultimatums; she had to secure at least a 2.0 GPA at the end of her first year or she will not be able to continue with her programme.

“At the university when they accepted me, they accepted me on a part time basis, meaning I can only do three courses and not five and that is because I don’t have mathematics and also part of their requirement is that you have to have CAPE and I don’t have CAPE.”

But now she gets to pursue her degree in Business Management (Finance) as a full-time student because she surpassed all the requirements.

“Because of my achievement of which I have a GPA of 4.05 at the end of the first year, they have now moved me over to being a full-time student,” an ecstatic Claudette told the News Room.

A couple of years ago, Claudette left Guyana for Antigua. She explained that she had managed to escape an abusive relationship and did not feel safe here.

When she arrived in Antigua, all she had was her suitcase of clothes. She had no money and got boarding at a relative.

She later remarried and with that union, her daughter was born.

Over the years, Claudette said she had this yearning to improve her life and that of her family and so she decided to enroll at UWI even though she did not have the qualifications to do so and she had many doubts.

“At first, I was skeptical about doing business because I have never done any business subjects whatsoever in secondary school so to go into a whole different field by itself, I was very nervous about it and kind of scared but then I said you know what I just need to embrace my fears and just do what I think is best.

“I realized I wanted to make an improvement for both myself and my family, I have a daughter now who is looking up to me, I need to leave a legacy for her, something for her to look up to and so I told my husband I wanted to go back to school and he supported the idea and I registered,” a proud Claudette said.

Claudette Hazlewood-Robertson during her high school graduation

Looking back now, she now knows that believing in yourself and that it is never too late to achieve anything in life is all that matters. Of course, the one thing that was always there was her husband’s support.

“Here it is I left school about 15 years ago and I am saying there are going to be students now coming from secondary school into university also I am saying there are going to be students coming from college into university and here I am graduated since 2008, you know like forgetting everything I did in school and here it is I have these students to compete with and I was like you know what forget about them, just go do what you have to do,” Claudette related.

She works with her husband who owns a painting company and is the mother of a four-year-old girl.

In Guyana, she attended the Cumberland Primary School and then went to complete her secondary school at the Berbice Educational Institute and “from there I never really pursued any other schooling. But it is never too late to start all over again.”

1 Comment
  1. Derk says

    Excellent! Keep going Claudette.

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