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We’re pleased to announce the matriculation of Jedidiah Francis into Oxford University to read for a DPhil degree in Statistics. Jedidiah, or “Jed” as he is affectionately called, attended the St Mary’s RC School in Kingstown, and completed his secondary education at the St Vincent Grammar School. His intellectual abilities became evident during his years at the St Vincent Community College where he graduated as one of two ‘Students of the Year’ in 2000, receiving awards for being the best Biology and Mathematics student.

In his search for opportunities for higher education, Jed joined the British army in February 2001 and was trained as a soldier and then as an Electronic Engineer. In July 2002 he received an honorable discharge from the army to pursue his personal academic goals. Having received acceptance from Queen Mary University of London, Jed was granted a NCB scholarship to read for a BSc degree in Biology with Business Management in 2003, and graduated with first class honours in July 2006.

His interest in mathematics and biology converged in his BSc dissertation, where he developed a statistical model to describe the proliferation of transposons or “jumping genes” in mosquito populations. His work on modelling jumping genes has gained him entry into Oxford University where he will be working alongside leading researchers to develop statistical models of HIV genetic evolution.

When asked about his motivation and drive, Jed ascribes all his success to the faithfulness of God, and highlights the input of his parents, Mr & Mrs Eli and Vienna Francis and family. Jed acknowledges the financial support of the Marriaqua Friendly Society (Bun Pan) during his Secondary School and A-level years, the National Commercial Bank for providing the finances to complete his BSc degree, and Prime Minister Gonsalves and the Government of St. Vincent and the Grenadines for their sterling support.

We take this opportunity to wish Jed success in all of his endeavours. May he continue to go higher and higher in the strength of the Lord.

His Family.