Students taste careers in finances sector

| 24/09/2019
Cayman News Service
(L-R) Cayman Finance Public Awareness Committee member Baron Jacob, Councillor Barbara Connolly, Financial Services Minister Tara Rivers, Education Minister Juliana O’Connor-Connolly, and Cayman Finance CEO Jude Scott

(CNS Local Life): More than 40 students benefitted this year from participating in Cayman Finance’s Student Education and Work Experience Programme, designed to give them greater insights into the Cayman Islands financial services industry.

The Year 12 students from high schools across Grand Cayman, as well as from the University College of the Cayman Islands (UCCI) Dual Enrollment Programme, participated in eight weeks of workshops focusing on different aspects of the financial services industry, weekly sessions with mentors working in the field, and four weeks of work experience at Cayman Finance member organisations.

“We have focused the programme on creating pathways for young, talented Caymanians into the industry,” said Cayman Finance CEO Jude Scott. “Our aim is to ensure our local students have their eyes opened to the opportunities that await them in the industry that plays an important role globally and is the main driver of the Cayman Islands economy.”

The programme is a public-private partnership between Cayman Finance, the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Financial Services. Over the past five years around 300 students have benefitted from the programme.

“There is a notable synergy between the Cayman Finance Student Education and Work Experience Programme and the Ministry of Education’s scholarship programme, which currently funds over five hundred students pursuing tertiary studies overseas,” said Education Minister Juliana O’Connor-Connolly.

“In today’s global village, it is safe to conclude that real-world experience is equally important as an excellent academic education. This programme fulfills the ministry’s goal to facilitate exposure to opportunities that exist within the financial services industry, with a greater vision to unearth real career paths most suited for students who aspire to significantly contribute to our local economy.”

The minister noted the willingness of all the financial services professionals involved, especially “those who have recently called our Cayman Islands their home” and who have “helped to lay the building blocks for our next generation of world-class, financial services professionals”.

Financial Services Minister Tara Rivers said the programme enabled young people to get theoretical as well as practical experience “in an industry that is so vitally important to our economy. It is important that we continue to provide the platform that allows young Caymanians to have the opportunity to be part of our success story.”

The financial services industry is the key driver of the Cayman Islands economy, contributing more than 50% to GDP and more than half of government revenue, which helps government fund initiatives, including national infrastructure, healthcare, education and scholarships.

The sector also provides employment for over 4,000 Caymanians, some of whom were volunteers in the programme and imparted their knowledge to the students through the workshops and one-on-one mentorship sessions, as well as through hands-on experience in the workplace during July and August.

Scott thanked member of the Cayman Finance Public Awareness Committee for overseeing the programme, and Cayman Finance member firms who allowed their professionals to volunteer their time to either facilitate workshops or to serve as mentors, as well as providing the opportunity for students to benefit from experience in the workplace.

Each student who completed the workshops, mentoring and four-week work placement received a US$1,000 stipend in addition to certificates of completion. Additionally, three students were randomly selected at the celebratory event at the end of the programme to win prizes, including a laptop and an iPad that will benefit them with their further education.

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Category: Education, Local News, Training

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