UG Berbice Campus English graduate publishes eight academic articles
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Ashwannie Harripersaud
Ashwannie Harripersaud

Juggling between family life, a full-time job, publishing academic articles, dealing with a host of other personal and professional commitments, all the while being a final-year student at the University of Guyana, is certainly not an easy feat. But 36-year-old Ashwannie Harripersaud, an educator by profession, has proven that she has what it takes to be resilient and make her mark in the education sector.

Harripersaud, a Senior Assistant Mistress at the Canje Secondary School in Berbice, will be one of over 2,200 graduands who will “walk” the virtual graduation stage when the University of Guyana hosts its series of virtual graduation ceremonies beginning February 4.

The proud mother of two has successfully completed the requirements for a Bachelor’s Degree in Education. She explained that even though the final year of her studies was extremely demanding. Yet, she managed to publish eight full-length academic articles in international, scholarly, refereed journals. She also co-authored a scholarly book on West Indian Literature which was accepted for publication by Austin Macauley Press in the United Kingdom. The book, entitled Wholeness and Home in West Indian Literature, will be available in February 2022.

Some of the articles that were published during her final semester at UG include: “The Classroom Re-Imagined and Re-Designed: The Pandemic-Ready Teaching and Learning Station”; “The Quadratic Equation Concept”; “Matrices: Concepts and Real World Contexts”; “Dueling Banjos: Classroom Contrapuntal: Creole versus English”; “A Review of Daizal Samad’s The Mirror Tells its Tale”; “History Through Place Names”; “Psychological/Perceptual Inhibitors to the Teaching/Learning of Mathematics”; and “The West Indian Emerges: George Lamming’s In the Castle of my Skin”.

Ashwannie also has several other articles on language and culture under consideration by international journals. She insisted, “The intent of my publications effort was to be demonstrably multi-disciplinary in approach”.

According to Harripersaud, one of the most challenging periods of studying at the University of Guyana (UG) was having to shift gears from having physical classes to online learning. “Online learning defied real interaction with other students and with lecturers,” she shared.

WELL-ROUNDED, CONFIDENT INDIVIDUAL
Despite the challenges of online learning and not being able to physically communicate with peers and lecturers, she praised the university for the role it played in helping her to become a well-rounded and more confident individual. “I am more thoughtful and self-aware rather than being self-serious and arrogant,” she said.

“There were lecturers who were driven to truly teach by example and to involve themselves in unheralded scholarly accomplishments. These were the people who drove me to think deeply about this noble profession called teaching, to understand that to teach well needs a philosophical sub-structure, that original scholarship is both a moral and professional obligation,” the proud UG graduand explained.

Reflecting on her days on campus, Harripersaud noted that if she were to go back in time she would tell herself to shut out the noise and ignore the gossip. “I would aspire to be lofty in scholarly ways and be more self-critical,” she remarked .

When asked about her experience as a student at UG, the young educator responded, “My most fond memory was sitting in a class where we were encouraged to think about things far beyond our limited individual experiences, a class that conveyed information with ease while allowing us students to learn more about ourselves: why do we think the way we think? Why do we see what we see while neglecting to see other things? Why do we behave the way we do and act the way we do? Why do we speak as we do and relate to others in ways that we do? This was joyous and refreshing indeed — to leave a class knowing a bit more about myself, my country, and my world. ”

This is the 55th Convocation for the Turkeyen Campus and the 20th for the Berbice Campus. (UG)

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