Regional

IUC says Bon Voyage to Redwood

BY ALICIA SUTHERLAND Observer staff reporter sutherlanda@jamaicaobserver.com

Monday, May 20, 2013    

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MANDEVILLE, Manchester — Tributes flowed as the International University of the Caribbean (IUC) said farewell, a week ago, to outgoing associate vice-president Stanley St John Redwood.

Redwood, former president of the Senate and a son of St Elizabeth, is migrating to Canada with his family.

A citation read at the function hailed him for his "deep and abiding love" for St Elizabeth and for his drive in helping to build IUC centres in Santa Cruz, St Elizabeth; Kellits, Clarendon; Old Harbour, St Catherine; Albert Town, Trelawny and Darliston, Westmoreland.

"... (He) grasps at every opportunity to enhance its growth and development," the citation said of his commitment to St Elizabeth.

"He was therefore instrumental in allowing the university to acquire The Education Centre (TEC), which initiated the birth of the IUC TECH programmes and the growth of the Santa Cruz Community Campus, forcing its removal from Hayles Plaza to its current location at Ledgister Plaza," said IUC vice-president of Research and Publication Jane Dodman, reading from the citation.

A trained Moravian minister, Redwood started as a staff tutor in 1996 training and supervising student pastors at the College for Leadership and Theological Development (formerly Institute for Theological and Leadership Development). Over the years, he served in different teaching capacities, including part-time lecturer in psychology, counselling and theological courses in the South Middlesex region, regional dean and assistant vice-president.

The citation said Redwood's full-time tenure at the IUC began in 2005 and was "marked by rapid growth, expansion and camaraderie". He assumed the associate vice-president position in 2012.

Referring to IUC Santa Cruz as "my baby", Redwood urged the staff to ensure that it continues to grow.

"Let me know how I can support it from afar," he said.

Senator Wensworth Skeffery, who recently joined with Senate colleagues in Parliament to say farewell to Redwood as president, noted that with the availability of modern technology, the latter would be "just a stone's throw away" and could continue to make his contribution to parliamentary matters.

"The global world is just a click of a button; you are still here. You can still make your contribution... Feel free to always send that email on national issues," he said.

North West Manchester Member of Parliament Mikael Phillips said that Redwood was "a good son of Jamaica" and would be a good ambassador in Canada.

"Even though he ran twice in the general election and was not successful, he never gave up on his Jamaican people or politics...," he said.

Redwood, representing the People's National Party (PNP), was beaten by the Jamaica Labour Party's JC Hutchinson for the North West St Elizabeth seat in 2002. In 2007 he lost to the JLP's Dr Christopher Tufton in South West St Elizabeth.

"The decision that you have taken (to leave) will come back with great rewards," said Mayor of Mandeville Brenda Ramsay, who described Redwood as "principled" and a "great thinker".

An emotional Redwood told the audience that the weeks leading up to his departure — scheduled for today — have been "really hard". The evening, which was dubbed one of "friendship, food and merriment", was also shared by two of his five children — Karisanne and Kara.

IUC was founded by the United Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands. It consists of the College of Leadership and Theological Development and the Mel Nathan College. According to the institution's website Mel Nathan College began operation in September 2004 as the tertiary arm of the Mel Nathan Institute for Development and Social Research (MNI). MNI, in a "mission-focussed" way, is said to have operated as the human and community development agency of the United Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands since 1978.

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