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About Us: History

The University of the West Indies (UWI) was founded in 1948 as the nucleus of a dream to bring “light, liberty and learning” within the reaches of the people of the Caribbean. The University grew rapidly, beyond all projections, and today is a multi-campus institution with an international reputation for excellence in teaching and research, and a focus on providing West Indian society with the tools for unlocking its potential for growth.

Over the last six decades, UWI has evolved from a fledgling college in Jamaica with 33 students to a full-fledged University with over 40,000 students. Today, UWI is the largest and most longstanding, higher education provider in the English-speaking Caribbean, with main campuses in Barbados, Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago, and Centres in Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, The Bahamas, Belize, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Grenada, Mont¬serrat, St Christopher (St Kills) & Nevis, St Lucia, and St Vincent & the Grenadines.

The second campus was established in Trinidad in 1960 and in 1963 the Barbados campus was opened, with 118 students, at a temporary site near the Deep Water Harbour. In 2009, UWI launched its Open Campus, a virtual campus with over 40 physical site locations across the region, serving over 16 countries in the English-speaking Caribbean.

UWI is an international university with faculty and students from over 40 countries and collaborative links with over 60 universities around the world. Through its seven Faculties, UWI offers undergraduate and postgraduate degree options inEngineering, Humanities & Education, Law, Medical Sciences, Pure & Applied Sciences, Science and Agriculture, and Social Sciences. In Barbados, affiliated to UWI, there is Codrington College which offers the Bachelor of Arts and theLicentiate in Theology of the UWI; the Caribbean Meteorological Institute which teaches the meteorology portion of theBachelor of Science with Meteorology; and the Cave Hill School of Business.

Cave Hill Site

The Cave Hill Campus in Barbados overlooks the island’s capital and principal commercial centre, Bridgetown. The scenic attractiveness and relatively small size of the university community creates an inviting, intimate and friendly atmosphere.


Latest News

  • The UWI Five Islands Campus has a New Principal

    The University of the West Indies (The UWI) is pleased to announce the a...

  • Telecoms providers grant UWI students free access to websites

    Over the next month, tertiary level students will sit their end of year and degree awarding examinations from the comfort of their homes for the first time in the island’s history of higher education. Starting tomorrow and running until mid-June, students at The University of the West Indies Cave Hill Campus will undergo final assessments for the just concluded semester in an online or remot...

  • COVID 19 Presents Opportunity to Fix Underlying Race Class Issues in Health Systems

    Regional Headquarters Jamaica. Wednesday, 06 May 2020. With over 3 milli...

  • UWI scientists provide daily COVID-19 surveillance and monitoring

    Daily surveillance and modelling of COVID-19 from the George Alleyne Chronic Disease Research Centre (GA-CDRC) at The University of the West Indies (The UWI) is now publicly available to provide evidence-based decision-making in the Caribbean. The Centre’s reports gathered currently from 20 Caribbean countries can be accessed at

  • Scientist lauds Region’s Early Response to COVID-19

    Deputy Dean of Research at the George Alleyne Chronic Disease Research Centre, Dr Madhuvanti Murphy has commended the early intervention of Caribbean countries to contain the spread of COVID-19. Dr Murphy told an April 22 online discussion forum on the topic ‘UWI on the frontline: Combatting COVID-19 through Data’ that countries in the region had implemented a number of non-pharmaceutical in...

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