Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : August 24th 2015 Contents 4
Monday, August 24, 2015 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
Prior to 1962
It was only during the World Wars when many of the
colonial citizens went to war and could not carry out the
administrative duties in the colonies, the need for higher
education of locals was recognized. Since administration
of the colonies was done as a region, it was decided that
setting up a university should also be established on re-
gional terms. The University of the West Indies was es-
tablished as a regional institution and as a college of the
University of London.
In 1962 however, the UWI became independent from
the University of London.
The UWI became established in the English-speaking
Caribbean countries such as Barbados, Jamaica and
Trinidad, each headed by a Vice Chancellor. Later, the uni-
versity expanded to serve other territories of the sub-re-
gion. The UWI campus is located in St. Augustine,
The Hugh Wooding Law School was formed in this
year. Today it is one of a few Law Schools established lo-
cally to provide professional legal training. Like the UWI,
this Law School is also located in St. Augustine.
Later in 1984, NIHERST (National Institute of Higher
Education, Research, Science and Technology) was es-
tablished to promote the development of science, tech-
nology and higher education in Trinidad and Tobago. Its
mandate also included enhancing the innovative and en-
trepreneurial capabilities of the country's population. Like
the UWI, its head office is located in St. Augustine.
In that same year, the School of Accounting and Man-
agement (SAM) also commenced operation. Although
SAM offered short training courses in Accountancy,
Management and Marketing at its inception, it gradually
expanded its training to include Bachelor and Master De-
In 1987, the School of Business and Computer Science
Limited was formed and today offers a portfolio of un-
dergraduate and post-graduate degrees from some of
the UK's respected Universities as well as globally recog-
nised professional associations.
1997 - 2001
In 1997, The National Energy Skills Center (NESC) was
also established with its primary objective being the
building of the human resource capital of Trinidad and
Tobago. Five years later, in 2001, NESC formally
launched the Trinidad and Tobago Institute of Technol-
ogy (TTIT), a fully operational campus, offering Certifi-
cate, Diploma and Applied Degree Programmes and
established its Head Office in Brechin Castle, Couva.
The College of Science, Technology and Applied Arts
of Trinidad and Tobago (COSTAATT), the largest, na-
tional public provider of tertiary education in Trinidad
and Tobago was also established around this time. The
institution was established by Act of Parliament in 2000,
and at the time, comprised six existing tertiary educa-
tion institutions. The new institution broke with estab-
lished traditional models by offering associate degrees
and a credit-based system of instruction.
2004 - 2006
Then in 2004, the University of Trinidad and Tobago
was formed and subsumed the TTIT under its banner.
The UTT was established as an integral component of
the country's national development plan. UTT as a na-
tional university was expected to allow the country to
keep pace with the rapidly growing needs of industry
while ensuring that quality higher learning was within
reach of the widest possible constituency.
During the period 2004 to 2006, the integration of
other tertiary level institutions into UTT continued in-
cluding the following:
• Corinth Teachers' College and Valsayn Teachers' Col-
lege -- established in the 1970s to reduce the backlog
of untrained teachers.
• San Fernando Technical Institute -- established in the
• John S. Donaldson Campus Technical Institute -- es-
tablished in the 1960s
Initially, UTT focused on programmes in engineering
and technology. However, today UTT's programmes go
beyond these fields.
In 2004, the Academy of Tertiary Studies (ATS) was
also formed. ATS is a University of London International
Programmes registered centre and offers law degrees
and other short courses. That same year, the Act creat-
ing the Accreditation Council of Trinidad and Tobago
(ACTT) was established. The Government Assistance
for Tuition Expenses (GATE) programme also com-
menced in this year (and was revised in 2006). This as-
sisted undergraduate students with 100 per cent free
tuition and postgraduate students with 50 per cent free
In 2005, the ACTT was launched, becoming the princi-
pal body in Trinidad and Tobago responsible for the qual-
ity assurance of post secondary and tertiary level
institutions, programmes and awards.
A year later, the Caribbean Union College became the
University of the Southern Caribbean (USC). Although
the USC was founded in 1927 as the East Caribbean
Training School (and later changed name to the
Caribbean Training College, then the Caribbean Union
College), it was in 2006 that it received accreditation
from ACTT and became the University of the Southern
Caribbean. The USC became the first private, faith-based
University in the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago and
one of the main accredited local universities.
That same year, the Ministry of Science, Technology
and Tertiary Education launched the Higher Education
Loan Programme (HELP) whereby students of Trinidad
and Tobago could access soft loans to fund any aspect
of their tertiary education, both locally and regionally.
Higher education is defined as post-secondary formal education leading to certificates, diplomas or degrees. According to UNESCO paper - Higher Educa-
tion in Trinidad and Tobago (published in 1985), "it was felt [during the colonial period] that education of locals might not serve the colonial interest. In-
deed, the only institutions of higher education in Trinidad and Tobago during the period catered for post graduate programmes, largely for citizens of the
metropolitan countries and excluded those in the colonies."
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