Vincentian scoops UWI scholarship
September 4, 2009
Vincentian scoops UWI scholarship

For most young females, Mathematics is not a popular choice of study. However, Melissa De Freitas’ passion for the subject may very well have been a deciding factor in her nabbing the Dame Bernice Lake Scholarship award from the University of the West Indies.{{more}}

Informed of her good fortune since June, 19-year-old Melissa recalled how elated she was when the university contacted her to let her know she had received the award, which she had applied for earlier this year. “I couldn’t believe it! I thought it was a prank, because I never win anything!” Once she realized that it was for real, she screamed so loudly that her father came running – thinking that someone had broken into the house!

An easy-going yet determined individual, Melissa seemed confident of her impending success at university. She will be pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Mathematics at the St. Augustine Campus, Trinidad. Although the full scholarship is designed to run only for the 2009 – 2010 academic year, once she maintains a GPA of 3.0 and above there will be scope to receive more assistance with tuition and accommodation for the duration of her course.

Keen on pursuing a career in Engineering, Melissa is hoping to switch to that programme from Mathematics after the end of her first year at UWI. She abhors the idea of having a desk job, so she feels that a marriage of Math and a job that requires a lot of fieldwork would be a match made in heaven.

In her spare time, Melissa, a Belle Vue resident, enjoys reading fictional novels, particularly fantasy and the works of Dan Brown. She is also very much involved in her Church’s youth activities. But above all, Melissa is highly anticipating her move to Trinidad because this will be a new experience for her. “It will be the first time I’m away from mommy and daddy for so long!” A daunting thought, but the confidence she exuded will surely see her through it.

Melissa is the daughter of Trevor and Annetta De Freitas, who are both teachers.

The UWI Regional Endowment Fund established the scholarship in recognition of Dr Dame Bernice Lake’s steadfast and ongoing commitment to ensuring that financially disadvantaged students are afforded the opportunity to pursue education and their career goals. Lake is one of Anguilla’s top legal scholars. (JSV)