PHILIPSBURG – Independent Member of Parliament (MP) Maurice Lake will present a motion in Parliament regarding the University of St. Martin (USM).
The motion aims at providing a solid foundation to further develop and enhance the quality of tertiary education. “USM should be first of all declared our national university of higher learning. Every developing country has a national university. In order for USM to operate properly and meet the educational needs of our growing society, it must be equipped to do so by being provided with the necessary tools,” Lake stated.
“I will be calling for an increase in subsidy via my motion and that this increase is incorporated into the 2017 budget of the country. The amount that it should be increased to is three million guilders. As a Member of Parliament, I already started the draft Tertiary Education Legislation process with the Minister of Education to recognize the University of St. Martin. This will be a start in enhancing our human capital, creating a stable economy as well as being able to produce more home-grown experts who are able to build expertise. An expanded USM will also contribute to the stimulation of regional tourism where the university offers programs to students from within the Caribbean,” he continued.
“They can follow programs here and their family will visit them from time to time not including the economic turnover of having regional and international students. The time is now to let USM fly to higher heights and become the beacon of the nation for higher learning,” Lake said.
“Imagine 25 percent of our National Budget goes towards education with approximately less than 1 percent going towards our University. That’s a national shame. It’s time for us to put our money where our mouth is if we are serious about making our University a National University instead of just taking pictures and nice talk about our University. USM has produced the best diverse alumni professionals in the Caribbean and the world. Our alumni foundation professionals hold every top position in St. Maarten. As a Member of Parliament, I will take the first step to present this motion to Parliament to make this a reality for our University,” Lake concluded.7