The Jamaica Diaspora Taskforce Action Network (JDTAN) recently held its 8th annual Advancements in Education Summit, which hosted 100 participating educators in Miramar, Florida. The 2023 JDTAN Education Summit—themed, “Advancing our passion for teaching and learning: Rediscovering our Why”—afforded the educators who arrived from Jamaica the opportunity to take part in workshops, panel discussions, and presentations. Educators from other Caribbean islands apart from Jamaica (St Maarten, Trinidad & Tobago, and Aruba) were also able to join in on the Summit, which ran from June 13—16th and was aimed at enhancing the education infrastructure in Jamaica while also addressing the evolving needs of the educators. This year’s Patron for the week’s events was Her Excellency, Audrey Marks, Ambassador of Jamaica to Washington, D.C. and Permanent Representative to the Organization of American States. As it happened, the Summit promoted a powerful network of educators that will serve to strengthen Jamaica’s education focused enrichment programs while bettering the education quality and knowledge transfer between students and their educators.
As stated on JDTAN’s LinkedIn page, “the vision and mission of The Jamaica Diaspora Task Force Action Network (JDTAN) is to create a collaborative approach to engage and mobilize the Jamaicans Diaspora to join forces and support Jamaica to achieve Vision 2030 and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Over the next 10 years, Jamaica, the Caribbean and the rest of the world, will need to position itself for a sprint to the year 2030, making every year count in achieving these ambitious goals to better humanity and our planet.”
The Summit fittingly concluded with the sold-out Gala held at the City of Miramar’s Cultural Center. Several notable attendees and speakers at the Gala include: Hon. Earl Jarrett, CEO of Jamaica National Bank; Dr. Sherika Dacres, Summit Chairperson; La Sonja Harrison, President of the Jamaica Teachers’ Association (JTA); Oliver Mair, Jamaica Consul General to the Southern USA; Leo Gilling, Diaspora Strategist & Engagement Advocate and JDTAN Chairman; Alexandra P. Davis, City of Miramar Vice Mayor; Maxwell B. Chambers, City of Miramar Commissioner; and Hazelle Rogers, Commissioner of Broward County.
Gala Red Carpet Welcome Segment
In the run-up to the official start of the Gala, there was a red carpet welcome that also featured a meet-and-greet complemented by cocktail hour and a variety of hors d’oeuvres.
Gala Was A Well-Dressed Affair
Gala Speakers’ Segment
Hon. Earl Jarrett, CEO of Jamaica National Bank, had the honor of being designated the evening’s keynote speaker. During his speech, he stressed the importance of good parenting and obtaining a formal education while spotlighting the enduring contributions of educators who are committed to shaping Jamaica’s future through education.
JDTAN’s 8th annual Advancements in Education Summit was without a doubt a great experience for all those in attendance and was a huge success thanks to the event’s organizers, partners and sponsors: Jamaica Diaspora Taskforce Action Network, Jamaica Teachers Association, Jamaica National Group, Florida Atlantic University, Union of Jamaican Alumni Associations, and the Patron for the Summit’s weeklong slate of events wasHer Excellency Audrey Marks, Ambassador to the United Stand and Permanent Representative of the Organization of American States.
Photo – Nick Ford