A passion for service and an exceptional academic record have earned 21-year-old Ashleigh Onfroy a Governor General’s Achievement Award for the parish of St Andrew.
She was awarded in the 18-24 years old category, which highlights youths who have been excelling academically while contributing to the development of society.
“I never dreamed I would be worthy of this award,” Onfroy told The Beacon. “I am eternally grateful because it’s a testament to collective growth.”
The aspiring historian is a past student of St Andrew High School for Girls, where she served as Head Girl as well as National Public Relations Officer for the Jamaica Prefects Association in 2019.
She previously attended Kingsway Preparatory School.
In her sitting of regional exams administered by the Caribbean Examination Council (CXC), Onfroy copped 17 subjects. They comprise nine at the CSEC level and eight at CAPE.
Of the 17 subjects, Onfroy attained the highest grade attainable (Grade One) in 13. She was also placed second in the region for CSEC Caribbean History.
Onfroy has just completed a Bachelor’s degree in History and Archaeology and Social Anthropology at the University of the West Indies (UWI), Mona. She managed to maintain a grade point average of 3.6 and above for her entire university tenure, which earned her a place on the dean’s honor roll for all six semesters of her programme.
With such an exceptional performance, it comes as no surprise that Onfroy was a recipient of the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information’s Emancipation Scholarship. It covered her tuition, maintenance and other learning materials throughout university.
She was also a finalist for the 2022 Jamaica and Commonwealth Caribbean Rhodes Scholarship.
Outside of her academic pursuits, Onfroy has dedicated much of her life to service, which she does on a local and regional level.
She currently serves as Public Relations Officer for the Caribbean Regional Youth Council, which is the collective voice of National Youth Councils across the region.
She served as a youth parliamentarian in 2021 and is the outgoing librarian for the Students’ Guild at UWI, Mona.
Onfroy is also an active member of the New Haven Seventh Day Adventist Church, where she serves in different capacities and participates in a number of outreach activities.
Onfroy told The Beacon that her passion to serve others was greatly influenced by her maternal grandmother, Joyce Mighty, who taught her from a young age the importance of being a blessing to others.
“My grandma always told me that, if other persons aren’t uplifted by my actions, it’s best I not do them,” she said. “It is meaningless if we don’t create a legacy of love.”
By Jamar Grant, Jamaica Beacon Journalist
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