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PM: Storm is an entrepreneur

PM: Storm is an entrepreneur

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A judgment call was made in sending Storm Gonsalves, youngest son of Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves, to the United Kingsdom to pursue his Advanced Level studies, says Gonsalves.{{more}}

The elder Gonsalves spent the week of September 5, 2010, in the UK, seeing his 17-year-old son settle into a British college.

The Prime Minister disclosed that his trip was a personal one, which he financed entirely.

Storm was sent to the UK to complete his A’Level studies after he was involved in an accident on Wednesday, January 6, 2010, in which he received serious injuries. He lost his spleen and broke both arms.

Gonsalves disclosed at a press conference on Monday, September 13, that this caused his son, a first year student of the St.Vincent and the Grenadines Community College Division of Arts, Sciences and General Studies, to miss classes for 10 weeks as well as his examinations.

Gonsalves said that besides Storm’s academic work at the College here, the young man had started a business called “Ras Shack” that he spent a lot of time in.

“Storm is, simply put, an entrepreneur, and I am glad that he is an entrepreneur, but I want him to finish his education, including a university education. In fact, Storm was even saying to me: ‘Should I go to university? I have the skills in Maths, I understand business, I have IT skills and so on, I can just do my business.’

“In short, if Storm had stayed here to repeat the year, he would have done Ras Shack business. I am in the best place to make that judgement. This has nothing to do with Community College not good enough,” said Gonsalves.

Storm was pursuing studies in Mathematics, Economics, History and Communication Studies at the Community College.

“I had to simply look at the issue as a father, as a parent, and said, should Storm do over his A’Levels here, go over the year, or should I send him somewhere else?

“Another child of mine, I would have said, sure do it over here. Do over the year here, but each child is different and this one called, Storm, is an entrepreneur,” said Gonsalves as he explained his interest in having his son focus on his academics at this time and not on his business.

Gonsalves, a former university lecturer, said he also pointed out to his son the importance of being trained at university.

The Prime Minister said since Storm turned 13, he has been involved in the business of breeding dogs.

“He used the money from it to begin to buy laptops and sell to fellow students. He has set up his business, he is an agent for LIME. He sells telephones, he sells music, he sells energy drinks, he sells dog food…onion and garlic,” said Gonsalves.

Gonsalves stressed that he does not understand the rationale for making an issue about the matter, because his daughter, Isis Gonsalves, graduated from the Community College a few years ago.

The Prime Minister explained that while there, she won two scholarships: A University of the West Indies (UWI) Open Scholarship and also a National Exhibition Scholarship, which gives her six years free education in total.

Gonsalves, however, noted that former Prime Minister Sir James Mitchell’s children did not pursue their academic studies in St.Vincent and the Grenadines, but he never made an issue about it.

Likewise, he mentioned, the children of Arnhim Eustace, Leader of the Opposition, studied overseas and he did not fuss about it.

“It shows the depths to which the Opposition is and how desperate they are,” said Gonsalves. (HN)