Highlights: UTech, Jamaica Graduation Ceremony 2021

University of Technology, Jamaica celebrated the Graduating Class of 2021 in a virtual ceremony streamed live via the University’s YouTube channel on December 12, 2021. Over one thousand graduates who have qualified to receive terminal, master’s and undergraduate degrees, associate degrees, diplomas and certificates in a variety of disciplines were presented with their respective academic awards.

Mr. Richard Powell, Pro-Chancellor, in his welcome, offered hearty congratulations to the Graduating Class, noting that their achievement “acknowledges and celebrates the culmination of all your years of learning, the friendships and lifelong connections made along the way, and the personal growth and development that you have gained.”

Mr. Richard Powell, Pro-Chancellor

As he wished them a smooth transition to the next phase of their journey, the Pro-Chancellor lauded graduates on their perseverance in overcoming the many obstacles of the past few years, and urged them to apply their skills and knowledge to build their communities and their country. 

He also expressed congratulations and gratitude to graduates’ families, sponsors, mentors, lectures and administrators who have supported them in countless ways throughout their academic journey.

Professor Colin Gyles, Acting President, also lauded graduates for their hard work and years of investment resulting in their academic achievements. He invited graduates to “celebrate and savor your achievements, as you move forward to reap the rewards.”

Professor Colin Gyles, Acting President

In expressing hope out that the upheaval brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic will eventually end, the Acting President asserted “I am confident that your UTech, Jamaica academic certification has prepared you well to be positive agents of change and has equipped you well to contribute to rebuilding and strengthening of economies anywhere in the world your chosen careers and continuing journey take you.”

He urged graduates to uphold the tradition of excellence laid out at the University, and to be “ambassadors of good values and attitudes that will preserve and develop our society.”                                                                                                       

Honorary Graduates

The University conferred Honorary Degrees on eminent Jamaicans, Professor Halden Morris, esteemed academic and educator, the Honourable Vincent Stephen Francis, OJ, renowned coach and sports mentor,  and Olympian Mrs. Elaine Thompson-Herah, CD. Citations on the remarkable achievements of the three nation-builders were presented by University Orator, Mrs. Pamela Kelly. All honorary graduates expressed sincere gratitude to the University of Technology, Jamaica for the honour and recognition of their respective achievements. 

Professor Colin Gyles (left) shares an “elbow bump” with Professor Halden Morris, following the conferment of the Doctor of Laws, Honoris Causa (Hon. LLD) on him.

The Honourable Vincent Stephen Francis, OJ (2nd right) is flanked by (from left) Mr. Barry Thomas, Acting University Registrar, Mrs. Pamela Kelly, University Orator and Professor Colin Gyles, Acting President who congratulated him following the conferment of his Doctor of Laws, Honoris Causa (Hon. LLD).

Olympian and UTech, Jamaica Knight Mrs. Elaine Thompson-Herah beams with delight as she displays her Doctor of Laws, Honoris Causa (Hon. LLD) conferred on her by Professor Colin Gyles, Acting President.


Valedictorian Cleveland Tomlinson, who earned First Class Honours, Bachelor of Education TVET in Business and Computer Studies, Faculty of Education and Liberal Studies, offered effusive congratulations to his fellow graduates, noting “in these pandemic years, we came to know resilience, hope and perseverance”, following the transition in teaching and learning to online and remote delivery.

He urged the Graduating Class to give back to their communities and to their country, highlighting that “we have received an immense gift from our university, and now we have been given the opportunity to make our contribution.”

He also thanked UTech, Jamaica for providing a sense of community and camaraderie in an “extended village”, citing the many lecturers, administrative and ancillary staff who supported him and his batch mates during their studies.

High Achievers

Edward Seaga Award

The Edward Seaga Award, which is presented to the student with the highest overall GPA in the 2020-2021 Academic Year, was awarded to First Class Honours graduate, Dr. Julian Walters, Bachelor of Laws, Faculty of Laws who obtained a GPA of 3.91.  The Award which is being presented for the third year, is in memory of former Prime Minister and Chancellor, The Most Honourable Edward Seaga, ON, PC in acknowledgement of his outstanding national service and contributions to UTech, Jamaica.

Dr. Julian Walters, first class honours graduate, Bachelor Laws, Faculty of Law and recipient of the Edward Seaga Award for academic excellence.


(From left to right, top row) Dr. Julian Walters, Bachelor of Laws, Faculty of Law, (FOL); Dona Barrett-Brown, Bachelor of Science in Public Health Nursing, Joint Colleges of Medicine, Oral Health and Veterinary Sciences; Jodene Allen, Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene, Joint Colleges of Medicine, Oral Health and Veterinary Sciences; (l – r, second row) Neethu Manianghattu, Bachelor of Science in Actuarial Science, Faculty of Science and Sport, Stephanie Taylor, Bachelor of Science in Midwifery, College of Sciences and Annay Wheatle, Bachelor of Laws, Faculty of Law.


Michelle Beckford (Mrs.)
Corporate Communications Manager
University of Technology, Jamaica
Telephone: 876 970-5299 
Email: mbeckford@utech.edu.jm