UCCI students get hands-on experience

| 15/12/2008

(CNS): The University College of the Cayman Islands (UCCI) in collaboration with the Cayman Islands Investment Bureau (CIIB) has just concluded a 10 week programme of practical hands-on experience for the University’s Business Students. The Student Consulting Programme, now in its second semester, allows UCCI students to get first hand experience utilizing the skills and knowledge gained from the theory of their Entrepreneurial and Business studies.

The programme benefited from the sponsorship of Cayman National Bank, which covered the out-of-pocket expenses incurred by the students over the course of the projects.

The small business clients that participated in this Fall’s programme were selected from a pool of applicants and given an opportunity to reap the benefits of having the Student-Consultants working with them and their businesses.

The two companies selected were: Shauna’s Early World and Business Links. The students met with the business owners to identify key objectives and parameters for the students to work through. The goal at the end of ten weeks was a comprehensive report which sought to address the identified challenges for the business and its owner.

“The Student Consultation Programme’s genesis is rooted with collaboration and integration as a strategy, to the broader longer term Economic Development objectives for Business and Entrepreneurial Development,” commented Dwene Ebanks, CIIB’s Business Development Advisor and the coordinator for the programme. “The Investment Bureau is pleased to be able to carry through with our goals for increased awareness and practical applications of entrepreneurial education. Our Learning Intuitions are the gateways for good Human Capital Development, one such tenet of the broader Economic Development.”

The final student presentations were made to a small audience on Tuesday, 2 December, at UCCI. These presentations were well received by the business owners, lecturers and sponsors of the programme. Shauna Haylock of Shauna’s Early World said “I am very pleased and grateful for the excellent work of the students. They have opened my mind to the many opportunities for growth and have helped me to better focus on the business issues of running my business and making a profit.”

“The experiences of the students were invaluable and allowed them to explore the limits of theory, practicality and the day to day realities for businesses and their owners,” said Annette Murphy, one of the UCCI Lecturers involved with the programme.

Manager of Bank Marketing, Marilyn Whittaker, said, “We are pleased to sponsor this very useful programme as it presented a win-win situation for all involved. The students have an opportunity to study all the facets of a small business and the business owners are provided with recommendations on how they can improve the operations of their business and its profitability. All business owners are reminded that Cayman National Bank offers small business facilities. We are committed to working with the Investment Bureau during the next semester.”

The Student Consulting Programme will be offered during the January 2009 semester. Businesses that are interested in participating in the programme should contact the Investment Bureau 945-0943 or via email at info@investcayman.gov.ky. For more information, visit www.investcayman.gov.ky 

Photo: Student teams, partners and sponsor at the final project  presentations at UCCI. Front row (left to right) – Shena Ebanks, Maribel Guballa-Dada, Lotoya Dell, Marilyn Whittaker of Cayman National Bank. Back row (left to right) – Annette Murphy (UCCI), John Frederick (UCCI), Shauna Haylock (Shauna’s Early World), John Bogle (Business Links), Nicola Williams, Dwene Ebanks (CIIB), Giselle Webb.


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