Beacon of the day | Young scholar rejected by university in Jamaica dedicates 19 CXC – all Grade Ones – to parents

Isaac Dunkley, whose application to study Medicine at the University of the West Indies (UWI) has been blocked, recently left Campion College with 19 subjects from the Caribbean Examination Council (CXC).

He attained the highest grade possible (Grade One) in all subjects.

What is even more impressive is that the young scholar, who lives at Portmore in St. Catherine, got straight ‘A’ profiles in 15 of the subjects.

“I am very proud of myself as my hard work has paid off,” Isaac told The Beacon.

He attributed his success to the support he received from his family and Campion College, where he served as a senior prefect and rugby player.

The 19-year-old attained the subjects in two different exams administered by CXC.

Those exams are the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) and the Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE).

The exams, as shown below, were done in four different years:

June 2017 (CSEC):

  • Mathematics – Grade One (all ‘A’ profiles)

June 2018 (CSEC):

  • Additional Mathematics – Grade One (all ‘A’ profiles)
  • Biology – Grade One (all ‘A’ profiles)
  • Chemistry – Grade One (all ‘A’ profiles)
  • English A – Grade One (all ‘A’ profiles)
  • English B – Grade One (all ‘A’ profiles)
  • Physics – Grade One (all ‘A’ profiles)
  • Spanish – Grade One
  • Information Technology – Grade One (all ‘A’ profiles)

June 2019 (CAPE, UNIT ONE)

  • Biology – Grade One (all ‘A’ profiles)
  • Chemistry – Grade One (all ‘A’ profiles)
  • Physics – Grade One (all ‘A’ profiles)
  • Communication Studies – Grade One
  • Pure Mathematics – Grade One

June 2020 (CAPE, UNIT TWO)

  • Biology – Grade One (all ‘A’ profiles)
  • Chemistry – Grade One
  • Physics – Grade One (all ‘A’ profiles)
  • Caribbean Studies – Grade One (all ‘A’ profiles)
  • Pure Mathematics – Grade One (all ‘A’ profiles)

With such impressive grades, Isaac applied to study Medicine at the UWI, Mona.

However, the university rejected his application.

In its letter, UWI said: “This decision was not an easy one to make and certainly not a dismissal of your academic ability, or promise, but a reflection of the keen competition among the applicants for the limited available spaces.”

Isaac wonders if he was turned down for financial reasons.

“The current tuition for medicine at UWI is JA$3.94 million per year. I would have to show that I’m able to pay for all five years for the programme. I applied for student loan and many scholarships, which I have not heard from as yet,” he said.

Despite the setback, Isaac, who is now seeking scholarships, has not given up on his dream of becoming a medical doctor.

The young scholar further told The Beacon that he is happy to have made his parents – Norman and Irishteen Dunkley – proud.

The young scholar told The Beacon that, amid the uncertainty, he is happy to have made his parents – Norman and Irishteen Dunkley – proud.

He noted that both parents, who once lived at Riverton City in St. Andrew, significantly value education although they did not pass the Grade Nine level in school.

Isaac said: “Going to school and doing well was always a part of their agenda for my life. They wanted to give me what they didn’t have. So they’ve always been my support system and I could not thank them enough.”

Isaac’s parents are also ecstatic.

“We are very very proud of Isaac… Neither of us have a subject to our name, but Isaac has allowed us to have these accomplishments through him. He has always made us proud,” they said.

Meanwhile, Isaac, a Christian and past student of Dunrobin Preparatory School, has sage advice for especially young people.

“I want to encourage the youth of Jamaica to be determined in all that you set out to do, and to do it with your whole heart and you will accomplish despite all,” he said.

By Horace Mills, Journalist


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