Jenine Shepherd ’20, the subject of a Spring 2019 Amherst Magazine article, was recently quoted by Caribbean Life concerning efforts to better encourage young educated professionals from her native Jamaica to give back to their birthplace.
“Jamaica is in the top 20 countries for the highest immigration rate of educated people,” said Shepherd, speaking at the 8th Biennial Jamaica Diaspora Conference, held mid-June in Kingston.
Jamaica’s “brain drain” means a financial loss for the country, she told conference attendees. “The government is missing out on valuable revenue they could have gained from taxes, or other investments made in the country,” she said.
“Shepherd, who received the Prime Minister’s Award for Nation Building, and is in the process of expanding her company to the USA and the Netherlands where she will build schools for refugees and inner-city children with the support of their heads of government and the UN, noted that Jamaica needs [young diaspora professionals] to make a contribution,” the publication reported.
She proposed that the Global Jamaica Youth Council back a Jamaica Youth Network initiative, a “transformative arm of the council” dedicated to better connecting Jamaicans with each other in the diaspora.
“She has been working closely with the US Embassy, consulates and the ministry to ensure that the voices of approximately 800,000 Jamaicans residing in the USA are heard on issues of cultural estrangement how they can get involved in policy making,” Caribbean Life added.