Six Liberians are proud scholars from the UK Government’s Global Chevening Program. Beneficiaries are 2019-2020 cohorts of Liberian Chevening students who have completed their studies with distinction in various professional disciplines and have returned home.
Among them is a lawyer, Lamay Kabarjoy, who specializes in labor law and corporate governance, and who studied at the University of Bristol in Britain. Cydia Williams-Walor, MA in Energy and Natural Resources Law, Studied at Queen Mary University, London; Yah Valah Baron, MA in Law, Gender and Conflict and Human Rights, Studies at the University of Ulster; Calilo Donzo, MSc in Biomedical Sciences, University of Plymouth; Celia Vania Kaman, MSc in Public Health for Development, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, and Wilma K. Neuville, MSc in Health, Safety and Environmental Management, taught at the University of Birmingham respectively.
The British Embassy in Liberia honored scholars over the weekend in Monrovia, awarding certificates to each of them to go through a highly competitive training starting with applying, meeting all qualification requirements, and traveling to Britain for one year of rigorous academic work in jobs of their choice before returning to Liberia.
British Ambassador here Neil Bradley, who awarded the honorary degrees, says that Chevening is the most prestigious scholarship program offered by the UK government to future world leaders that is highly competitive.
Chevening boasts an alumni network of more than 50,000, including an outstanding roster of distinguished figures in politics, business, law and other fields with at least i8 past and current heads of state who are Chevening alumni, explained Ambassador Bradley.
For many Chevening scholars, the opportunity to advance their careers and study at the world’s top universities is one they might not otherwise have, he said, adding that the academic skills and connections that scholars have during the Chevening program enable them to do so. To become leaders in their specific field – from finance to healthcare to governance – and apply those skills and knowledge to make a positive and lasting impact in their home country.
Liberian Foreign Minister De Maxwell Kimayan, in subsequent remarks, noted that in the absence of the requisite knowledge and experience, it would be difficult to move forward in Liberia, adding, “We express our gratitude to the UK government for this unique opportunity for Liberians.”
Minister Kimayan recalls that the relationship between the United Kingdom and Liberia dates back to Liberia’s independence in 1847 when Britain recognized Liberia as an independent country before the United States, Liberia’s traditional friend, so he is proud of scholars for their individual achievements.