Commonwealth Bank has increased support for its 'Emerging Leaders' scholarship programme at the University of the Bahamas this week with a donation of $50,000.
It was the seventh consecutive year that the BISX-listed bank lent its support to the programm it created, taking total donations to $350,000. The funds endow scholarships for students who show leadership potential and choose to study economics, finance or other disciplines that prepare them for business, social or political decision-making positions.
"This is the seventh time we have donated to the 'Emerging Leaders' programme, and just as the institution has evolved from college to university, we have watched, with satisfaction, the respect for leadership training gain significance in higher education," said Denise Turnquest, Commonwealth Bank's senior vice-president of credit risk.
"We are extremely grateful for Commonwealth Bank's commitment to higher education and this endowed scholarship programme," said Davinia Blair, UB's vice-president of institutional advancement and alumni affairs.
"When the bank partners with us in this way, it reaps tangible benefits for the scholars and the country. We cannot build the University of the Bahamas in isolation. We are developing an expanse of skills and talents that will fuel our economy, and supporters of higher learning are vital in that regard."
Mrs Turnquest emphasised: "It is in the challenging times, whether it is dealing with economic challenges, health issues, climate change or consequences of social change, that true leadership is tested.
"We do not want to be found wanting. We want to ensure that there is a generation of leaders who are agile, and well-educated, who approach decision-making with careful balance and analysis, and can communicate their decisions effectively. That is a tall orde, and we are very pleased to be working with the University of the Bahamas to make it a reality."
Support for the university level program is part of Commonwealth Bank's commitment to education. For the past decade, it has partnered with the Ministry of Education in numerous initiatives, including back-to-school events, parenting workshops and supplying school supplies and backpacks for tens of thousands of students throughout the islands.
In 2016, its donations reached the highest amount ever - more than $830,000, with emergency assistance following Hurricane Matthew accounting for nearly $400,000. The bank also supports youth development and makes annual contributions toward its $500,000 pledge to the Cancer Society of the Bahamas Cancer Caring Centre.