Those of you who are familiar with the successful Terminator series of films staring Arnold Schwarzenegger, would recognise the quote "Old but not obsolete". It comes from the last Terminator Genisys film, staring an ageing Schwarzenegger who would often remind a youthful John Connor that "I'm old but not obsolete".
That is a message that the St. Kitts-Nevis-Anguilla Amateur Radio Society has embraced whole heartedly. In our interview with their President Basil Woods, he detailed their efforts to recruit young people with an interest in getting involved in amateur radio.
Woods said, every year on our anniversary in April we go into the schools and give presentations on amateur radio. However, next year we're planning to do a bit more as we don't think once a year is that effective.
He stated that HAM radio is now getting some competition from the more immediate and modern forms of communication, such as WhatsApp.
"One of the difficulties we have is that we have to make sure that they understand amateur radio. With all the technology around such as WhatsApp and so on, sometimes fellas don't to sit down in front of a radio to send a message. Most people like to use their fingers now so that's a challenge.
"In amateur radio now we have applications such as Paco or Packet, where you can use the computer to send text messages. We have that system that we're putting into place right now."
Jamaica Can Be Silicon Valley of the Caribbean
Jamaica has the potential to be the Silicon Valley of the Caribbean, with a knowledge, tech-savvy generation at its core to drive economic and industrial development, noted University of Technology (UTech) student, Orande Harris.
"My hope is for Jamaica to develop into a real serious type of Silicon Valley of sorts. We could be dubbed the Silicon Island. So by going to China and observing all they have to offer, I am hoping that I can understand what it takes to make the ICT (information and communications technology) industry in Jamaica a very productive one to improve the lives of the people," Harris said.
He is among a group of six Jamaican university students short listed from from the University of the West Indies (UWI), for Huawei's Seeds for the Future Programme.
The students left on Monday for China, where they will participate in a two-week work and cross-cultural trip facilitated by Huawei, one of the world's leading global information and ICT solutions providers.
"Huawei launched the programme to nurture professionals who are urgently needed to drive the development of the ICT industry in countries where we operate," explained Logan Shi, the company's country manager in Jamaica. He said the company was looking to close the gap between knowledge learned in the classroom and the skills required by the industry, while enhancing knowledge transfer.
The Seeds for the Future programme, which has benefited more than 20,000 students in 96 countries, is being launched in Jamaica and Guyana this year, with Trinidad and Tobago and Panama the two other Caribbean territories where it has already been implemented.
Caribbean and Japanese Youth Confront Climate Issues
More than 600 Caribbean and Japanese youth have put forward their recommendations for climate-smart actions for the region following intense dialogue in October at the third Youth Climate Change Conference in Jamaica.
The recommendations from the two-day event themed "Our Climate, Our Voice, Our Change – Advancing Partnerships for Global Impact". Those include: incentivising programmes to promote youth interest and involvement, particularly through educational opportunities; youth involvement in ongoing respective country research as required by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
"It is conferences like this one that equip young people with the facts they need to champion the cause of combating climate change," said Shanielle Allen, a member of the Jamaica delegation, in her reflection of the proceedings.
"After both days, I left empowered and inspired to be a part of the change the world needs to see. I believe I speak on behalf of all youth delegates when I say it was a fulfilling experience and we are now ready to vehemently put forth our proposals to our governments and Heads of State."
The conference was a joint initiative between the USAID-funded Jamaica Rural Economy and Ecosystems Adapting to Climate Change II (Ja REEACH II) Project, the United Nations Development Programme's (UNDP) Japan-Caribbean Climate Change Partnership (J-CCCP) Project and the Government of Jamaica.