In 2014 she was not only named the country’s top Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate [CSEC] top performer but Elisa Hamilton was also, later that same year, bestowed the title of Regional CSEC top performer.
With her 19 grade one passes and one grade two pass, she not only made proud her school at the time, Queen’s College, but Guyana as a nation as well.
Hamilton has not let-up on her drive for success. The young woman who opted to pursue medical studies at the University of the West Indies [UWI] has continued to yield unabated success.
She just recently received an award for being the top medical student at UWI. The award was essentially a reward to Hamilton for maintaining all ‘A’ grades for the six subjects during her first year of medical school. Her father, Lennox Hamilton, was eager to share the news of her sustained excellent performance.
But she had however long outlined that her performance was not because she was exceptional but rather because her priorities were in order.
She, during an interview, recalled spending many nights studying long hours. In fact it was such dedication that she applied towards completing high quality School Based Assessments [SBAs] projects which allowed her to enter the CSEC examination with good scores and set the pace for her to undertake the Caribbean Advance Proficiency Examination.
According to Hamilton, she did whatever was imperative even as she kept in mind that “this goal was temporary…that I would have to work hard yes, but it would not be forever, and that the returns in the end would be worth the work.”
In fact her future was already mapped out in her head before her results were known. She’d already envisioned becoming a doctor before she knew which university she would have chosen to attend.
She was determined to work hard so that she could be eligible for a scholarship and ease her parents of the burden of the financial strain. This was in light of the fact that the fourth of six siblings was determined to not have her parents be forced to pay the high cost of a good quality education she so desired.
“I wanted to get a scholarship to go and study because it would be very expensive for my parents to provide such for me…I knew it would be a bit tough on them so that was my motivation.”
As a top performer at CSEC in 2014, Hamilton, based on an announcement by former President Donald Ramotar, should have been eligible for a scholarship, compliments of the Guyana Government, to study at a university of her choice.
However, due to reported logistics this did not materialise under the former administration which had introduced a scholarship programme for the two top CSEC performers and as well as the two top performer of CAPE.
Hamilton had shared her desire to pursue studies in medicine at Yale University but was later informed that the Government was not in a position to fund this. She reportedly received a notice from the Permanent Secretary of the Public Service Ministry Hydar Ally, informing her that she can apply to pursue studies in engineering, dentistry or medicine in Guyana, China or Cuba.
In 2015 after the APNU+AFC Government assumed office, Minister of State Joseph Harmon said because of Government’s emphasis on young people, a commitment was made to continue the granting of scholarships to the top performers to Universities of their choosing up to 2015.
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