UVI Board Approves Free Tuition Policies and Procedures

University of the Virgin Islands (File photo)
University of the Virgin Islands (File photo)

In a special session Wednesday, the University of the Virgin Islands Board of Trustees approved policies and procedures to aide with the implementation of Act No. 8155, the Virgin Islands Higher Education Scholarship Program, which requires that financial aid be granted to residents of the Virgin Islands for post-secondary education at UVI.

The board voted unanimously to approve the policies and procedures, with several amendments. The university did not provide any information on what those policies and procedures, but Wednesday’s news release said they will be posted on the school’s website by Feb. 1.

“This is a very historic accomplishment for the university and the territory,” UVI President David Hall said. “The board should be proud for putting this issue on the territory’s agenda and for the overwhelming support that we received from the legislative branch and the executive branch.”

Act No. 8155 or the Virgin Islands Higher Education Scholarship Program was signed into law by former Gov. Kenneth Mapp and introduced by Lt. Gov. Tregenza Roach, who was a senator at the time.

The scholarships will be available to all Virgin Islanders who graduate from a private, public or parochial high school regardless of age, date of graduation or household income.

Recipients of the tuition aid, which would supplement students’ federal scholarship awards, university scholarships, and private donations, will be required to maintain a GPA of at least 2.5 and to work in the territory for a specific length of time after completing their studies. The university will collaborate with the Department of Labor to secure job placement for scholarship recipients.

In other business, while in executive session, the board approved the June 2, Aug. 31, and Sept. 18, executive session minutes. The Board also approved the nomination of Dr. Bradley Ebersole to the Foundation for the University of the Virgin Islands, addressed a personnel matter and received an update on legal matters.
The next scheduled meeting of the Board of Trustees will be held March 2. A complete list of board meetings is available on the Board of Trustees page of the UVI website.