Was scholarship opportunity publicised?

| 20/08/2019
Ask Auntie, CNS Local Life, Caymanian status

On 9 August 2019 an article was published in the local media about three Caymanians receiving a scholarship from Flow. According to the article, “The following day, the students met with the leadership team again for a mix and mingle hour. During this activity, the leadership team evaluated the students to decide which applicants would ultimately receive the scholarship money.”

Was the scholarship advertised to give all Caymanians a fair opportunity to apply? And is using a mix and mingle event to evaluate applicants standard practice?

Auntie’s answer: Kayon Mitchell, Flow senior manager in corporate communications for the Northern Caribbean, confirmed that the scholarship programme was open to all Caymanians. She explained that the application details were posted on the Flow Cayman website and the invitation to apply for the scholarship “was advertised in the papers over a period of three weeks”.

To be honest, if that was the extent of their promotion, it was pretty poor. Potential recipients of this scholarship do not tend to fall in the demographic that buys print news, and even many of their parents are likely to read news online. So, and I realise this sounds like self-promotion, if they weren’t also advertising on CNS and sites like Ecay Trade, where young people actually are, it seems as if they fell short. It’s not open to everyone if you don’t try to reach everyone.

I don’t want to take anything away from the generosity of corporate scholarships, but maybe next time Flow should consult boots on the ground to see how to actually make sure they get the message out to everyone in Cayman. I understand that it is a gift but corporate generosity tends to also be a promotion of that entity, so a gift that appears elitist or fudged might not elicit the required publicity.

CNS did not even receive a press release about the scholarships, which, again, is pretty poor on the part of Flow. So I don’t know if or how the criteria for the scholarships was presented to potential candidates.

In evaluating the applicants, Ms Mitchell said the “process used is an internationally accepted one”. Specifically for Flow, this involved a combination of methods, which included “the candidates’ participation in training exercises, a corporate social responsibility initiative and a social engagement. These are all aligned to our work environment and facilitated an expansive assessment of the candidates in various environments which allowed them to be more relaxed and expressive.”

It would have been interesting to learn a few more specifics (training for what?) but again, this is a gift that someone in the Cayman Islands benefitted from, so perhaps we shouldn’t be too critical.

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Category: Ask Auntie, Education, Misc Questions, Scholarships

Comments (4)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    What about the monthly payment government is giving to athletes that are supposed to be training for the olympics, but are not. Another friend scholarship, but from our money, not a private company

  2. Anonymous says:

    As this is a private company and was given to Caymanians, is there any requirement for them to advertise? I mean it is their money, if they want to pick some children to give scholarships to it might not be ethical but I feel it is within their rights. If this was non-Caymanians or government I can see the problem, but here I really don’t see what the issue is.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Family and friends scholarship

  4. Anonymous says:

    Good question!