‘Follow your passion’, young Jamaicans

Minister of State in the Ministry of Education Alando Terrelonge, speaking at the Jamaica Tertiary Education Commission’s (J-TEC) Go Higher Conference on Thursday (October 31) at the Jamaica Conference Centre in downtown Kingston. (Photo: JIS)

State Minister in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Alando Terrelonge, is encouraging the nation’s youth to follow their passion and to be prepared to put in the work that is required to make it a reality.

“Preparation and passion; those are two things that you must never forget. Have a passion for what you want to do in life and make sure that you are prepared to do every single thing you need to do to get to where you want to in life,” he said.

The state minister was speaking to students attending the Go Higher Conference at the Jamaica Conference Centre, downtown Kingston, on Thursday (Oct. 31).

Terrelonge, in a rousing motivational talk to the students, recalled his own journey in life, which saw him as a young inner-city boy from Grants Pen in Kingston matriculating to Campion College for secondary school and later to the University of West Indies, Mona, to pursue law, before securing the prestigious Chevening Scholarship and interning in Madrid, Spain.

“So, I was in Madrid for six months working, learning Spanish, having the time of my life. It was amazing and it all started out by having a passion for what I wanted to do and by always being prepared to get to where I wanted to be in life,” he said.

“It really is that simple. It really is, and so I want to encourage you all, there are vast opportunities that come every single time you empower yourselves and education, my kings and queens, is the best gift that you can give to yourself,” he told the students.

He noted that education is something that no one will ever be able to take away from them.

Terrelonge (left), greets head boy of York Castle High School Bobby Francos (right), at the Jamaica Tertiary Education Commission’s (J-TEC) Go Higher Conference on Thursday (October 31) at the Jamaica Conference Centre, downtown Kingston. At second right is President of the Students’ Council at York Castle High, Mark Johnson. (Photo: JIS)

“That is your future,” he said.

The junior minister further encouraged the youth to be solutions-oriented and to be consistent in their resolve to succeed.

The Go-Higher Conference, now is in its second year, was organised by the Jamaica Tertiary Education Commission (J-TEC).

It brings students together in a forum where they are empowered and provided with information about college preparation, brand building, entrepreneurship, finances, accessing higher education and other useful information.

Commissioner of the JTEC, Dr. Dameon Black, encouraged the students to soak up as much information as they can and to use it to make wise decisions.

“Knowledge is power but critically, how you use the information that you gain is even more powerful,” he said.

— JIS