Kevin Powell

KevinPowellKevin Powell is a dedicated professional, passionate educator, and Public Speaking and Communications Specialist extraordinaire. He is currently the Head of the Department of General Studies and Behavioural Sciences at the University College of the Caribbean (UCC), where he has been lecturing since September 2004. Over the years, he has lectured the following courses: Academic Writing I & II, English for Tertiary Students, Introduction to Literature, Public Speaking, Caribbean Literature/Cultural Studies, Theatre and Business Communication.

Voted “Lecturer of the Year” for a number of years between 2007 and 2011, Powell inspires students to be the best version of themselves and to respect and enjoy education. His philosophy toward teaching is driven by the words of American Poet, Adrienne Rich, “Responsibility to yourself means refusing to let others do your thinking, talking and naming for you; it means learning to respect and use your own brains and instinct; hence, grappling with hard work.” According to Powell, the principle was imparted to him by his college professor during his final year as an undergraduate student at the University of the West Indies (UWI). When he told Dr. Forbes, his professor, that all he wanted to do after college was to teach, she sharply responded, “Well teach them how to think and half your job will be done.” Today, every student he encounters leaves his course armed with the knowledge that their ideas, opinions and responses are just as worthy of mention as those who they read about in any textbook.

Despite the challenges life has thrown his way … from being diagnosed with Anthrogryposis (a condition affecting his joints) at birth to being ridiculed during his more youthful years, he has fought and endured and overcome. It is this indefatigable spirit which has led him to become somewhat of a celebrated motivational speaker on campus and at conferences and seminars. Complementing this, his personable style, engaging and spirited personality, helps him to connect readily with multiple other audiences on topics relating to successful living, students success, determination and excellence.

This University of the West Indies alumnus, (Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in English in 2004 and 2013 respectively), is also very involved in planning and executing extra-curricular activities for students, delights in writing and editing newsletters and brochures and has produced two publications: “Di Language-The Impact of Jamaica Creole on Economic Development” and the second, a department initiative to promote art and culture islandwide, “Taking Arts to the Streets”.