Ministry moves job training programme to UCCI

| 11/09/2014

(CNS): The education and employment ministry is moving its job-seekers' training programme, Passport2Success, from the ICCI campus to the UCCI. Officials from the ministry stated that data collected over the five years the programme has been running suggested that only 20% of those that graduate from the training go on to college. Ministry officials said in a long release that in order to address these low numbers accessing higher education, the the UCCI could provide an environment that facilitates opportunities for graduates to access higher education and the campus would stimulate, motivate and encourage P2S graduates to take this next step.

The release did not indicate why the desire to further their studies had not be triggered for the graduates at the current ICCI campus.

“I am very excited about the current cohort and the move to UCCI,” said Shannon Seymour, Director, The Wellness Centre. “We’ve always encouraged our graduates to further their studies so with this move we can do so much more to assist them in the process. I believe that being housed at UCCI will help to overcome some of the self-doubt our P2S participants have about their ability to succeed in academics.

“Work skills development continues to be our primary goal, but instilling a desire for lifelong learning goes hand in hand. We would like to thank President Bodden and his staff for the efforts to welcome us” she added.

Now in its fifth year, Passport2Success is an employability skills development programme which has been operated from the campus of the International College of the Cayman Islands (ICCI) for the past four years. According to the statistics one year after graduation over 50% of graduates secure employment. Officials stated that the success of the programme lies in its ability to assist participants in overcoming barriers and gaining the skills needed to access the labour market. 

But the managers of the course believe that more graduates should be going on to further education.

As a result of the various courses, programmes and degrees that the UCCI offers, it can facilitate a seamless transition for participants into higher education. The UCCI offers foundational courses that will provide a bridge to higher education for P2S graduates who have not been successful academically and who are lacking in their high school exam passes. This bridge to higher education is very important to the P2S programme as, officials said, many of the participants historically have not found academic success. As a result access to these basic courses should make for a more successful transition into study.

Over the course of the programme the Ministry has found that many P2S participants are interested in professional pursuits in the technical and vocational areas. The UCCI offers a number of technical and vocational programmes at both the certificate and Associate level. The UCCI campus is also home to the new School of Hospitality Studies.

Delivering the programme on the campus of the UCCI means that P2S participants can engage in the process of building relationships with college faculty, administrators, advisers and students as they explore opportunities to engage in higher education and technical training.

In welcoming the P2S Programme and its Cohort #15, Roy Bodden, President of UCCI said it was a pleasure to share the campus facilities with such a deserving group of young Caymanians.

“I speak for the collective when I invite you to avail yourselves of the opportunity to involve yourselves in college life beyond what is required for your programme completion. It is my hope that some of the P2S participants will be so impressed and interested that they register for programmes offered at the University College,” he said at the opening of the first P2P course at his college on Monday.

The UCCI offers day and evening classes and presents an opportunity for P2S participants to sit-in on a college level class and participate in a higher education environment. 

“The opportunity for P2S participants to engage in activities, assemblies, guest lectures, clubs and associations on the UCCI campus, will further serve to encourage them to continue on in higher education after graduating from P2S,” said Dianne Conolly, NWDA Training and Development Manager.  “We are also hopeful that the exposure to other college students will serve as a positive experience for P2S participants and that this will provide them with the opportunity to find role models among their contemporaries on campus who are engaged in daytime studies.”

She said the hope was that the experience of being there would motivate P2S graduates to explore the educational options to develop the tools, skills and experience needed for success in the labour market.

The latest group in the P2P 12 week programme is made up of 25 unemployed Caymanians between the ages of 17 and 20.

For more information on the P2S programme contact Dianne Conolly, Training and Development Manager for the NWDA at dianne.conolly@gov.ky or 945-3114.

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Comments (4)

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  1. Anonyanmous says:

    Good move government, now cancel so work permits and get Caymanians employed.

    • Anonymous says:

      Very stupid comment. There is more to why caymanians are unemployed  

      • Anonyanmous says:

        There are indeed more factors as to why Caymanians are unemployed, here are a few:

        1. Migrant and cheap labourers are out bidding Caymanians especially in the Construction industry
        2. In better paying jobs; most are often out sourced by labour brokers (i.e. employment agencies) who collect more than 1/2 of the employee wages, can't do that with Caymanians so they won't even send them to interviews
        3. Immigration laws are not tough enough; far to easy to get work permits in Cayman; need to enact better legislation like Bermuda.
        4. Many foreign employers and some Caymanians don't want to employ Caymanians because they cannot pay them slave wages
        5. Like every country in the world some Caymanians are unemployed because they just don't want to work.

        Until government deem it fit to set aside certain sectors of employment for Caymanians or make the permit fees prohibitive then the practice will continue, if an attorney's work permit will cost $120k we will see how many Caymanians lawyers will be unemployed.  If the cost of a Paralegal permit is $75k we will see how many will be unemployed likewise if a Corporate Administrator permit cost $50k and a Secretary's permit is $25k it will be like it was back in the 80s when there were restrictions and zero unemployment.  Irrespective of what many people believe the Cayman Islands are still the best place to live and do business, we are still one of the easiest place on earthto issue a work permit with excellent pay and benefits that is the reason why so many people are here and why for such a small island the total money transfers of just three nationalities out of over 120 can remit well over $300 million in one year amazing I would think.  There are many site just visit the work permit requirement in Bermuda and working in the construction industry and domestic help in Dubai or the UAE.  

  2. Anonymous says:

    OPPS ICCI – big loss for you guys!