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Studying abroad assists in getting rid of ‘Born Here’ mentality – Sharon Flax-Brutus

Virgin Islander Sharon Flax-Brutus said the 'born here' mentality of some Virgin Islanders could be curbed through living or studying abroad. Photo: VINO/File
The Facebook post by Sharon Flax-Brutus. Photo: Facebook
The Facebook post by Sharon Flax-Brutus. Photo: Facebook
VALLEY, Virgin Gorda, VI – Director of the BVI Tourist Board Mrs Sharon Flax-Brutus has joined the conversation about Virgin Islanders’ having the so called ‘Born Here’ mentality, a frequent topic of discussion.

Mrs Flax-Brutus, in a recent post on Facebook, said, “I would advise any Virgin Islander who gets the chance to live or study abroad to take full advantage of it.”

The view was expressed not in the capacity of Director of the BVITB but rather in her right as an individual to freedom of expression and having an opinion.

She said she felt compelled to make such a statement because she believes that living or studying abroad assists in getting away from this "Born Here" mentality and it exposes locals to a different kind of lifestyle.

“Too many of us have this laid back mentality, you know the one I'm referring to! A mentality where we feel as though opportunities are supposed to just fall into our laps,” Mrs Flax-Brutus added.

She further stated, “Well in reality, that's not how the world works, and if we want to see a positive change in our society we have to start getting up and making our own opportunities! It's your ONLY life, so make it count!"

Her sentiments expressed were the same as voiced by one of her nieces, Ms Sasha D A Flax. “Indeed I was reviewing my past posts and saw this from Sasha a year ago. We need to be the change we want to see but we cannot do it from the viewpoint of a bubble. The viewpoint of living or studying or even visiting another country can be quite insightful,” the tourist board boss said.

31 Responses to “Studying abroad assists in getting rid of ‘Born Here’ mentality – Sharon Flax-Brutus”

  • wize up (18/10/2016, 08:36) Like (49) Dislike (1) Reply
    I agree some of us must be more open minded however at the end the day we have to be given the first opportunity to develop the territory because it is normal for nationals of a given country to be given first preference...the Standard of education must be upgraded so that our children and grandchildren is fully educated to fill vacant post therefore reducing the number of permits:
    • LOL (18/10/2016, 15:02) Like (8) Dislike (1) Reply
      Can you please talk to our elected representatives? They seem to have missed that memo
  • born here (18/10/2016, 08:45) Like (48) Dislike (11) Reply
    Sharon Flax-Brutus where else in the Caribbean can you get a job over a local from that country?
    • Me (18/10/2016, 10:50) Like (21) Dislike (1) Reply
      There will always be need for foreign skilled workers. It doesn't matter which country it is and we must learn to accept that. However that said, agree with Ms Flax in that we must educate ourselves taking advantage of all opportunities.
      • LOL (18/10/2016, 15:03) Like (8) Dislike (7) Reply
        That is right. The problem arises when you are suitably qualified and experienced more so than the expat candidate and they still chose the expat.
        • @LOL (20/10/2016, 20:14) Like (1) Dislike (1) Reply
          Suitably qualified and experienced, maybe, but how is the attitude, how is the punctuality, how is the respect for others, and what is the motivation. BVIslanders will always be top of the list here, and rightly so. Too many slide down that list rapidly for other reasons.
    • LOL (18/10/2016, 11:03) Like (10) Dislike (9) Reply
      What happen to the last nane marssssss
    • huh (18/10/2016, 12:27) Like (3) Dislike (2) Reply
      Many countries in the Caribbean.
    • rocket scientist (19/10/2016, 20:45) Like (1) Dislike (1) Reply
      when i hear stuff like this i think it is conflict of interest
    • Ms wize (20/10/2016, 17:43) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      Every other country except the Bvi. Learn that. Who qualifies get the job
  • VG Realist (18/10/2016, 08:47) Like (33) Dislike (5) Reply
    Yawning. But yet these same people turn their noses down on locals and expats alike. Gtfoh!
  • hmmmmmm (18/10/2016, 08:57) Like (25) Dislike (13) Reply
    So says the Garrot hybrid!!!! spare us the hyperbole will you!
    • From one Garrot to the next (18/10/2016, 16:45) Like (15) Dislike (4) Reply
      hmmmmm do you know what a Garrot is and what it means? Maybe you to need to travel. Marcus Garvey dubbed Antiguans Garrots because they stood up for what they believed and know that they should educate and qualify themselves and earn, not be given top positions because they were "born here". Too many persons in the BVI are in jobs because of politics and not because they can do the job.
  • long look me come from (18/10/2016, 09:22) Like (21) Dislike (9) Reply
    I born here and proud
    • OK Then (18/10/2016, 16:50) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
      The Carrot hybrid...an apt description for these newbie Tolians. I am taking the liberty of storing it for future use.
  • split (18/10/2016, 10:15) Like (23) Dislike (4) Reply
    I agree that you should understand the need to compete, however your home is your home and if you can't get opportunity in your home where the hell else are you going to. So are you telling locals that they should get up and go to some other part of the world and expect to be welcome, be allowed to take the food out of another person mouth and they will be happy about it.

    NO person in their right mind would object to a job being filled by an outsider if there isn't a local to fill it!!!!!

    Non-locals feel the same way and if they say other wise they are lying.
    • Get? (19/10/2016, 11:22) Like (5) Dislike (0) Reply
      Therein lies the problem. BVI needs to go out and make the opportunities. You can only do that when you have the necessary skills. Just as a factor of the size of the country, not all of those skills may be acquired here.

      BVI will always need immigration because of its size but Locals should put themselves in the position to create and compete for the top jobs. You don't do that by sitting around not competing in the global workforce.

      You need to understand that the chase out expats mentality often chases away the job not the person. To wit, Bermuda and Cayman, while they have their own issues, see an opportunity to take business from here because they can provide a better business environment while we can't process work permits, business licenses, company transactions and regulatory issues efficiently and without interference. We don't have much time to sort this out.
  • Opinion (18/10/2016, 10:46) Like (14) Dislike (9) Reply
    Totally agree with Ms Flax-Brutus, for us to develop we all have to broaden our horizons and get educated and not just expect as we are "born here" to get a job. Thats how we compete in the world and get better and make the BVI, as it is NO 1 in the Caribbean. Not many other countries in the world have the structure that its own people get preference over jobs, education and experiencing other Countries and the way they think are the way froward and also for us to celebrate and promote Natures Little Secrets
  • Born here have to run from here to survive (18/10/2016, 11:04) Like (26) Dislike (3) Reply
    When I was going to school in Barbados I went to renew my student visa and I asked the immigration officer what will I have to do in order to get a part time job seeing that I was going to school full time and he said to me (don't u think that what ever job u can think about there is a Bagon who can do that job
    With all the experience that I have in my field and all the exposure and all the interviews I cannot get a job in my country but the ethnic cleansing that is going on here in the BVI some body will have to answer for it .
  • Understand (18/10/2016, 12:35) Like (26) Dislike (2) Reply
    I understand what you are saying, the “BORN HERE” mentality which is associated with “I don’t have to work hard,” “I don’t have to be competitive” “things should be provided and readily available for me,” “I could be rude, disrespectful and do whatever I want and treat others mean,” GOT TO GO. We the mature thinking ones know exactly what you are saying. You are not saying that we Virgin Islanders should be second class in our own country. Perhaps some of these bloggers need to do some travelling, explore and see what life is really about.
    • Happy BVIslander (18/10/2016, 17:09) Like (5) Dislike (2) Reply
      I think it is so wrong when a whole people is to be ashamed of their nationality because others want to discriminate against them. Where did this "Born Here in the BVI" originate? Didn't it begin with those expatriates who wanted to laud the entitlement of their children being born here as being equal to those who were bona fide BVIslanders with one or both BVI parents? Now, all and sundry for their purposes of discrimination want to use it against BVIslanders as if BVIslanders should not even let anyone know that they are of these islands. Where else are we to claim if not our own homeland? I born here and am happy to be.
    • Straight (21/10/2016, 23:08) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      @understand You share the sentiments of a lot of people. We are not saying that jobs are to be taken from BV Islanders; what we are saying is that the born here mentality where you are unwilling to give your all on the job simply because you are shielded by the fact that you were born in the BVI must go. There are a lot of times when BV Islanders cry for the job and when they get it, the show up for work when they feel like, how they feel like and do their jobs like the business or the company belongs to their parents.
  • Really (18/10/2016, 15:36) Like (5) Dislike (2) Reply
    I gave 3 young men a ride the other day as it was raining. The conversation was 'man meen ain going back to work', so I being curious asked why. I was told because it's raining; I was like do you work outdoors? They were like no, but we work for family so they have to pay us anyhow. Maybe not the young ladies but that is the mentality of alot of the young men in society.
  • Student Abroad (18/10/2016, 16:36) Like (9) Dislike (3) Reply
    I agree with Mrs. Flax-Brutus 100%! I too had the mentality of expecting things to be handed to me until I realized that opportunities around me were being taken by other students.....students who worked hard for them and took hold of every single thing that was offered. Scholarships, job offers, workshops. I was sitting back and watching others benefit from the same things that I was eligible for. We as Virgin Islanders need to become more aware of all that is offered to us. We need to work just as hard or even harder as everyone else.

    We need to stop getting upset when others start taking what we clearly don't want. Studying abroad opened my mind to that and I am grateful for the opportunity granted to me by the Government of the Virgin Islands to study abroad.
  • I BAHN HEH (18/10/2016, 17:31) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
    The "I Born Here" mentality was taken from a place of high consciousness and intelligence to the lowest of the lows. So we have gone from expressing our proud origins and culture in a constructive and unified manner to what it is now. As we try to express ourselves with such limited understanding of its TRUE meaning, it deviates drastically from what it was meant to mean. We need to have more elevated "Born Here" mentalities and bring our unity back, however, i do not think studying abroad is the solution unless we are sure when our young ones return, they return with an improved state of mind that encapsulates the Native culture and well-being of their home. The state of our country is a DIRECT reflection of the state of minds running it, the ones who made this country such a beautiful attraction to the rest of the world were not those in suits who gave it exposure, but those who worked the soil and on their seed.
  • uhh (18/10/2016, 17:35) Like (8) Dislike (0) Reply
    Mrs Brutus.....Have you strolled into any of the schools here in the bvi and take a good look at the conditions they are in? The money we use to send our young away should stay here to invest in proper educations that can built our society. All we will be doing is manufacturing more and more children that we gon end having to send abroad.
  • Forbidden Truth (18/10/2016, 22:41) Like (10) Dislike (0) Reply
    Guy Hill born here but look how the politics and internal cannibalization is being played out. Keep messing with people's lives. Everything only for a while.
    • wize up (19/10/2016, 06:59) Like (1) Dislike (4) Reply
      @ forbidden truth: stay focused because hill and ritter are both belongers
      • Taiwo (19/10/2016, 20:34) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
        @Wise up. Point taken but Experience, dedication diffrent from political Fluff


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