The University of the West Indies, Five Islands
MottoOriens Ex Occidente Lux (Latin)
Motto in English
A Light Rising From The West
TypeRegional, public, autonomous university
ChancellorMr. Robert Bermudez
Vice-ChancellorSir Hilary Beckles
PrincipalProfessor Densil Williams
Students147 [1]
AffiliationsAssociation of Commonwealth Universities (ACU)
Caribbean Community
Association of Atlantic Universities[2]
WebsiteUWI Five Islands

The University of the West Indies at Five Islands is a public research university in Five Islands, Antigua and Barbuda. It is the newest of 5 general campuses in the University of the West Indies system.


Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Gaston Browne approached the UWI to establish a campus in the country. In fact, the Prime Minister stated that if the UWI was not willing to be a partner to establish a university in Antigua and Barbuda, he would seek another partner.[3] As the UWI vice-chancellor noted, the post-secondary education participation rate of students of the OECS sub-region was significantly below that of the countries with landed campuses and even the rest of the hemisphere.[4] Data backs up that the average tertiary gross enrolment rates (GER) for Barbados, Jamaica, and Trinidad and Tobago are much higher than the GERs for other contributing countries that do not have a landed campus.[5] Other attempts to establish UWI campuses, such as in Grenada, have been considered but not yet fulfilled.[6][7]

The ability to complete the first one or two years of a degree or even a full degree in a student's home country is a significant cost saving for the student and the government, where it provides student financial assistance. Positioning the UWI campus at an already constructed complex reduces the needs for new construction, saving the government further money. However, the Prime Minister is continuing to seek funding to expand the campus, including a possible USD 20 million donation from China.[8]

On 27 May 2019, the University Finance and General Purposes Committee (UF&GPC) of the UWI System approved the establishment of Five Islands campus. The first group of 147 admitted students were matriculated on 27 September 2019 and are currently pursuing studies in the Schools of Humanities and Education; Management, Sciences and Technology; and Health and Behavioural Sciences.[1]


The UWI Five Islands campus is sited 7.5 km from the capital, St. John's, co-located with a campus of the Antigua State College. The building itself was originally built by a Chinese state construction firm for a secondary school that was never opened, due to a change of government. Instead, it was retrofitted and transferred to the College. Built to accommodate up to 750 students, it consists of 6,450 square-metres and has various regular and specialised learning spaces. The College's schools of business, education and nursing are presently located in the complex. As many of these students are enrolled in the first two years of franchised UWI programmes, they will be able to complete their degree programmes without having to leave the country.[4]

Global initiatives

Harvard University has expressed willingness with UWI Five Islands to work out cooperation arrangements that would benefit the University, in acknowledgment of Harvard University’s historical relationship with slavery, particularly confronting past injustices and their legacies. The Harvard Law School was founded on an endowment in 1815 that was funded from slavery on the Isaac Royall Jr.’s plantation on Antigua.[9]

Schools and programmes

Tuition for Bachelor’s degree programmes at UWI Five Islands is the lowest among all the landed units of the UWI System.[10] In an effort to make the University more attractive, the Government of Antigua and Barbuda said it will be offering scholarships to students from across six countries of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS).[11]

Unlike the other landed campuses of the UWI, which have faculties, the Five Islands campus is composed of three schools:

School of Humanities and Education

School of Business and Management

School of Health and Behavioural Sciences

See also


  1. ^ a b "UWI Five Islands officially accepts first students". Jamaica News. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
  2. ^ "About AAU". Association of Atlantic Universities. Retrieved 12 February 2019.
  3. ^ Price, Sanka (10 May 2019). "Browne is not helping with unity". Nation News. Nation Publishing. Retrieved 29 December 2019.
  4. ^ a b "UWI's fourth campus to open 'in three months'". Barbados Today. 27 June 2019. Retrieved 29 December 2019.
  5. ^ Martin, Michaela; Bray, Mark (2011). Tertiary education in small states : planning in the context of globalization (PDF). Paris, France: Unesco Pub. ISBN 978-92-803-1358-1. Retrieved 29 December 2019.
  6. ^ Government hands over land to UWI Friday, July 20, 2012, St. George's, Grenada
  7. ^ Grenada Hands Over Land for University of the West Indies Campus
  8. ^ Joseph, Carl (28 Nov 2019). "PM looks to China $20 million more for UWI expansion". The Daily Observer. NewsCo. Retrieved 29 December 2019.
  9. ^ "UWI in Possible Link-up with Harvard U." St. Kitts Observer. Retrieved 17 December 2019.
  10. ^ "UWI Five Islands Boasts Lowest Tuition in Region". Caricom Today. CARICOM. Retrieved 29 December 2019.
  11. ^ "Sixty students to benefit from scholarship to UWI Five Islands". Antigua Observer. Retrieved 17 December 2019.

17°07′08″N 61°52′50″W / 17.11889°N 61.88056°W / 17.11889; -61.88056