Chemistry scholar goes to the next level
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November 9, 2012

Chemistry scholar goes to the next level

by Stanton Gomes Fri, Nov 9, 2012

A teacher from the Grenadine island of Union has been named valedictorian for 2012 in the Faculty of Science and Technology at the St Augustine Campus of the University of the West Indies.{{more}}

In addition to being named valedictorian, Kevin “KC” Charles, 27, was awarded his degree with first class honours, and received the Anil Deisingh award for the best graduating student entering the Chemistry Postgraduate Programme, at the 17th Annual FSA Faculty awards ceremony held in Trinidad and Tobago on October 23.

“I have learnt a lot in my time here as an undergraduate student, in particular with regards to sleep, a specialty that I have passively acquired. Over the past three years, I have attained three rather impressive skills that are worth mentioning: How to sleep while standing erect, how to do so with my eyes wide open and finally how to sleep while being oblivious to the fact that I was actually already asleep,” Charles said in his valedictory speech.

“Nothing is beyond your reach. It is imperative that you dream big and let no one tell you that you cannot accomplish whatever feat you’ve set out to conquer. Set your goals, assess the difficulty, formulate your own plan and execute it with diligence,” was his advice to youths of today.

Charles, a simple but enterprising young man from Union Island, entered the University of the West Indies St Augustine campus three years ago, to further his studies in the field of Chemistry and Biology. His passion for science started during his early school years at the Union Island Secondary, where he attained 9 CSEC Subjects and graduated as valedictorian; he then took it a step further and excelled at the St Vincent and the Grenadines Community College. He started a career in teaching in 2004 at the Union Island Secondary where he continued his passion by way of teaching these science subjects.

While Kevin Charles is a science scholar, he also has a creative side. He holds the portfolio of owner / producer/ music engineer at Stadic Studio Productions, the first and only recording and music production studio based on Union Island. With a clientele spanning SVG, Grenada, Trinidad, Germany and the USA, the studio produces all genres of music, inclusive of soca, reggae, dancehall, alternative, dance, RnB/Hip Hop etc.

Despite of all his achievements thus far, his journey is far from over. Charles has already started his Master’s programme in Chemistry by way of research. He is hoping to make a scientific breakthrough in the area of antibiotics, specifically with Simocyclinone D. This research is intended to take him all the way to his attaining his PhD, which should be completed in the next four years, he said.

Being very patriotic, one of his goals is to plaster the name of St Vincent and the Grenadines everywhere the wind takes him.

“We live in a great nation filled with individuals with great potential,” he said.

When asked to whom he owes his success, he said “I thank the Lord for all his rich blessings and guidance in bringing me this far. I’ll also like to thank my parents, my grandmother (Lovina Regis) and by extension my entire family for all their support, the many friends who have served as my support system along my journey. Special thanks to Ms Alma Dougan, as well as the department of Chemistry and Life Sciences here at the University of the West Indies, St Augustine campus for providing me with such an opportunity.

“We must strive to make a significant contribution to this world. We must have purpose. We must make an impact. And we can only get there by doing, by taking action. Only then can we make a difference. Why wait for things to change when we have the power to change it now. If opportunity does not rear its head, that’s okay. It just simply means that we will have to find a way to create our own. To every existing problem, there is a complimentary solution. It is our job to find it,” Charles said as he ended his valedictory speech.