IN JAMAICA: Yemalla Edwards, once homeless medical student at University of the West Indies (UWI) pinned at ceremony after financial struggles and getting massive support from PALAS. Student had 3.85/4.00 GPA in first year and is now doing very well at UWI.....his mother, a vendor at Coronation Market, and his father, a minimum wage worker, Edwards pushed himself to achieve even more as he is propelled by an unshakeable faith in God.

Yemalla Edwards after pinning
 ceremony at UWI
UNIVERSITY of the West Indies (UWI) student Yemalla Edwards is on his way to realizing his dream of becoming a medical doctor.

Yemalla was pinned as a full fledged Medical student at the UWI- Mona Campus on Thursday, March 20, 2014. He was very excited about the reality of being closer to milestone as a Medical Doctor. Before this, Yemalla struggled financially to support himself while in school. He relates the times when he was homeless on campus while sporting a 3.85/4.00 GPA in his first year in med school. 

One early morning at about 2:30 am, campus police found him sleeping under a stairway....he was quickly awakened by the police shouting out, he must be a homeless man on campus. Luckily his student ID saved him from the embarrassment he said, later that morning he went to class.

A friend Brian (L), Yemalla (C) and Teacher Mr. Blake (R)
PALAS Executive Director, Rula Brown met Yemalla on August 22, 2013 at UWI near a lecture theater as he was making preparations for PALAS awards ceremony for 60 students. One of Yemalla's teacher, Mr. Blake, saw Brown speaking to five persons interested to know about PALAS. Blake decided to call Yemalla from a class room to acquaint himself with the scholarship program..... 

Approx. three months later Mr. Edwards received assistance from PALAS of JA$125,000.00, a cell phone, a place to reside across the street from UWI at no cost. Thanks to a good samaritan, Ms. Judy Grant  in Atlanta, Georgia whom Rula reached out to for help and she gracefully said yes.... he is very happy there at his new home. He also received a tablet computer (shown in photo with him) complements of PALAS adviser, Mr. Patrick Campbell. He will graduate with his Medical Degree in 2018. Read about Mr. Edward's story from recent Jamaica Observer article published on Oct 13, 2013. more

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