Barbadian Certified Landscape Ecologist Awarded First-Ever Thomas J. Greenan Scholarship

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (21 July 2021)A Barbadian certified landscape ecologist with a passion for promoting a sustainable environment for all living species is the recipient of the first-ever Caribbean Tourism Organization Scholarship Foundation’s Thomas J. Greenan Scholarship introduced this year for studies in agro/gastronomy-related subjects.

               Twenty-two-year-old Ramon Robinson will pursue studies in applied horticulture- landscape operations and management at the Houston Community College in the United States.

               “It is very difficult in this world to carve out a career path for yourself and I am not exempt from any of these challenges, so one can imagine what this help means to me to be able to go on and begin my studies in the field of geology so I can have a chance to positively impact and make great changes in the world of sustainable tourism and agriculture,” said Robinson after being advised that he was successful. “This grant will enable me to comfortably begin my studies and knowing that I have crossed one hurdle has truly removed a weight from my shoulders and I feel motivated now more than ever to give my best as I continue my academic journey.”

               The US$5,000 scholarship includes an internship at Adya Global, an organisation committed to sharing the beauty of the world with all, and in ways that honour and respect the land and people who inhabit it. Adya, co-founded by Thomas J. Greenan, works to create sustainable and equitable relationships with its partners across the globe that are community-based and focused on agro and gastro production capabilities. 

               Robinson was selected after a rigorous selection process, which included interviews with the applicants.

               “We are thrilled that the first Thomas J. Greenan Scholarship will go to Ramon, knowing he will be able to take his knowledge and skills back home, playing his part towards ecological sustainability of the tourism sector,” said Nalini Tiwari Greenan, Thomas' partner and co-founder of Adya Global. “As we engaged with a number of worthy recipients during the application process, we are reminded of how much work is left to be done. There are so many young people who want to do their part to make their corner of the Caribbean more just in a number of ways; their determination to do so is inspiring and should move all of us to step up our part in this work.”

               The foundation has also granted its Delta Air Lines scholarship to Brandon Balbosia of Trinidad and Tobago, 35, who has been dreaming of becoming a commercial airline pilot since he was ten years old.

               “Delta is proud to partner with the Caribbean Tourism Organization to support the dreams of future aviators,” said Luciano Macagno, Delta’s managing director for Latin America, the Caribbean and South Florida. “We congratulate Brandon Balbosia on being awarded the Delta Air Lines scholarship and wish him all the best as he continues his aviation studies.”

               Balbosia will pursue an eight-month instrument rating course at Briko Air Services Ltd in his native Trinidad.

               “For many years I have been pursuing the goal of becoming a commercial pilot, however, I have not been able to afford to meet the cost. This scholarship will allow me to achieve my instrument rating, which is a very major step in becoming a commercial pilot. It will definitely give me the foundation I need in terms of financing the training so that I can focus more on the rigorous studies and training,” said Balbosia.

               In addition to Adya Global and Delta Air Lines, the foundation has also received support from Royal Caribbean International and a number of individuals who have contributed via its recently launched GoFundMe page, which is part of a fundraising drive to fund additional scholarships and study grants for Caribbean nationals.

               The CTO Scholarship Foundation has the expressed aim of training and developing future leaders for the Caribbean tourism industry by funding studies in tourism and tourism-related subjects, hospitality and language. Since its inception, the foundation has generated over US$1 million in scholarship funds and has provided over 280 grants and scholarships.