Basseterre: St. Kitts, Tuesday, September 27, 2022: Minister of Education Hon. Dr. Geoffrey Hanley welcomed a courtesy visit from His Excellency Michael Lin, Resident Ambassador of the Republic of China (Taiwan) to the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis on Tuesday September 27.
During the brief and cordial visit Ambassador Lin gave insight into the continued investment made by the government of Taiwan in the development of the Federation’s human resource, through its annual provision of tertiary education scholarships.
“Annually we will provide students with two different scholarships; MOFA and ICDF scholarships for students to seek their tertiary education in Taiwan. Next year we’ll increase the number of students for the MOFA scholarship to 10 students and for the ICDF that will be a little different because the ICDF applicants have to compete with other students from our allies in this region”, the Ambassador explained.
Providing deeper insight into the differences which exist between the MOFA and ICDF scholarships the Ambassador continued,
“The ICDF scholarship subjects are mostly linked to national development; focus is on Agriculture, Civil Engineering, IT, Medicine, Public Health. The subjects are taught in English so the students don’t have to go through their first year in learning Mandarin, which will save them more time to complete their studies in Taiwan. But for the MOFA scholarship because all the subjects are taught in Mandarin, the students will have to spend their first year studying Mandarin. All together the scholarship for the MOFA students is five years and for the ICDF it depends on the degree [Master or PHD] chosen.”
Ambassador Lin expressed hope for future enhanced and strengthened diplomatic relations between the Federation and Republic of China (Taiwan) and congratulated Minister Hanley for his success during the recently held elections.
Expressing gratitude on behalf of his ministry and by extension the people of St. Kitts and Nevis, Minister Hanley stated
“I would like to thank you for the courtesy call and of course you know that St. Kitts and Nevis has been enjoying a relationship with your country for almost 40 years. On behalf of the Prime Minister and the Federation we want to thank you for the contributions you have been making over the years. I am happy to learn that we would have an increase in the scholarship opportunities for our students to travel to Taiwan. This [tertiary education] is deemed very important and as a priority area for us as we try to improve training at all levels [in the economic sector]. As a result the kindness of your government in offering an increase in the scholarship opportunities would only put our students in a better position upon their return to better serve the country. Even the local scholarships that are being offered to the students at both primary and secondary schools, we are extremely happy for this opportunity. We want to thank you on behalf of those thousands of children who have benefitted and those who will be benefitting as the years go by.”
Minister Hanley echoed Ambassador Lin’s expectations for enhanced and strengthened diplomatic relations between the two islands.