RODNEY BAY, St. Lucia – “The establishment of the OECS School of Diplomacy will offer new career options for Montserrat’s youth,” says Director of Information and Communication, Nerissa Golden.
Golden along with the Assistant Secretary in the Office of the Chief Minister, Colin Fergus are participating in a two-day Continuing Education seminar for OECS Foreign Service Officers.
“There are new opportunities being created within the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) which our young people can consider as they plan their future,” explained the director. “As a founding member of the OECS, Montserrat is very well positioned to actively represent the member states on the international stage.”
“The development of a joint foreign service would mean that our students presently studying abroad and others about to go off to school can consider degrees that will enhance Montserrat’s ability to negotiate with donor agencies, international political groups on our own behalf and as part of the OECS. They can come back and serve in the OECS Foreign Service or be stationed at the OECS mission in Brussels or new ones that will be established,” added Golden.
Colin Fergus added that in light of “the proposed new constitutional arrangements for Montserrat which would give the island greater input in making decisions previously reserved to the governor, the school would be beneficial in equipping our people to better articulate our position.”
Participants in the seminar looked at the draft preliminary framework for the OECS School of Diplomacy and proposed changes and refined the documents. The initial road map for the school includes the need to create the institutional structure, establish partnerships to house the school, and develop the courses for the programmes both online and face to face.
A feature of the OECS School of Diplomacy would be courses that discuss the history of the organization and its unique integration model. The new proposed framework for the school will be presented to heads of government at the next OECS Authority meeting. The vision for the school is to offer two undergraduate programmes and eventually a fully accredited Masters Programme.