The Grenada Revolution Online

St. George's University School of Medicine

On the 7th of June 1983, the very same day Prime Minister Maurice Bishop was meeting in Washington, D.C. with National Security Advisor William Clark and Deputy Secretary of State Kenneth Dam, a plan was afoot to help the privately-funded United States medical school in Grenada move to a soon-to-be-closed U.S. naval facility on the island of Antigua.

The matter was left to the State Department to communicate with Doctor of Law Charles R. Modica, Chancellor of the medical school, to determine if Dr. Modica was interested in the move.

Two members of the United States National Security Council - Alfonso Sapia-Bosch and Oliver North - signed off on an offer of aid for the school to then Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs Robert C. McFarlane, to

volunteer to intercede with the Antiguan government to lay the groundwork for further negotiations between the two parties.

According to a declassified memorandum, a couple of months before 7 June 1983, then Latin American desk officer on the National Security Council, Alfonso Sapia-Bosch, said:

one of the school's attorneys visited me [Sapia-Bosch] to say the school wanted to leave Grenada but had been unable to reach agreement with Antiguan Premier Bird.

Dr. Charles Modica must not have had an interest in moving the school, but his contacts with the U.S. National Security Council were not over. More was to transpire and will be included in the next chapter to come.

The St. George's University Medical School stayed on in Grenada, and remains an active center for medical and academic studies.

The St. George's University School of Medicine Ltd., established by an act of the Grenada Parliament in July 1976, started its first classes on 17 January 1977. From over two dozen countries, 197 student were enrolled.

The campus, on the island's south coast, is, according to Hughes -

located on Government property leased for 10 years at US$21,500.00 per annum and the Company has agreed that 'as long as its school is in operation and commencing with the clinical programme of 1979, it will pay Government in medical supplies and equipment the sum of US$100,000.00 for use at the Hospital and/or other health facilities in Grenada and, in addition, US$75,000.00 to be used for Government purposes.

The first graduation ceremony was held in Grenada's National Convention and Conference Center on 24 May 24 1981. Ninety-nine students were graduated . . .

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