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First Graduation: B.A. (Hons) in Political Studies from Trent University in Ontario, Canada

"Where would I be without the people who believed in me? Thank you, for helping me achieve my first degree" - Boykin G Smith

One of my many mantras is “manners and respect will take you all around the world” and my journey has been just that. After attending St. Anne’s Anglican School and obtaining a $17,000 scholarship prize from Beautillion Committee: Gentleman's Club, a Ministry of Education National Grant award, and the Trent International Scholarship award, I was able to complete a B.A. (Hons) degree in Political Studies with a minor in Economics from Trent University in Ontario, Canada.

At Ontario’s #1 undergrad university, I immersed myself in community service, student government, and purposeful research. I served in various leadership roles championing global citizenry and environmentalism. For instance, I worked as an Executive Director and the Vice President of Campaigns and Equity for the student's union - a multimillion-dollar organization providing services such as grocery assistance, a unified bus system, health and dental care, campaign financing for a fifteen (15) million-dollar community centre, and political advocacy at the local and national level for a population of 8,000 students.

In particular, one of my four overarching campaigns was called #BleedGreen to promote environmentalism on campus and combat climate change. I was able to coordinate 20 active volunteers to carry out various tactics throughout the year including encouraging divestments from fossil fuels; promoting sustainable and alternative methods of transportation in the community (i.e., cycling, bus, and carshare services); implementing a Charter of Student Food Rights for access to ethical and nutritional meals; raising funds for the UNICEF Canada Water project and promote access to water as a fundamental human right, and conducting workshops to develop student’s waste management and recycling skills. As a result, I received several accolades including the very first, and only black, recipient of the prestigious 3M National Student Leadership Fellowship nomination, Andrew Priestman Memorial Prize in Politics, Continuing International Student Award, David Morrison Award, and Dr Mike Allcott Award. Being a Trent alumnus has instilled an active ethical awareness to strive for an eco-friendlier world and prepared me to be an exceptional leader for my country.

In 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, I returned home on one of the very last flights from London, UK, before the global lockdowns, and immediately put this degree to good use by running for public office in the 2021 General Elections. I currently reside in the Garden Hills constituency, which is prone to severe flooding and water sanitation issues in certain communities. I ran a ‘For Hope’ campaign that spoke to environmental policies at the constituency, national and international levels. Despite being unsuccessful at the polls, I received the National Youth Award for Governance and participated in the first-ever Virtual Caribbean Youth in Parliament on Climate Justice hosted by the Caribbean Climate Justice Project (CCJP) in collaboration with the Caribbean Regional Youth Council (CRYC). I am very humbled to have spoken on the impact of climate change on the economic sectors in this parliament. I also proposed the resolution item for a global carbon tax (GCT) to finance a climate change loss & damage fund for SIDs. More recently, I spoke about the GCT and our 13 action item resolution at The Bahamas' (Regional) Conference of Youth on Climate Change, the 2022 Latin America and the Caribbean Multi-Stakeholder Leadership Dialogue Consultation for Stockholm+50, and a zoom meeting with The Bahamas' Minister of You