Archive for September 30th, 2014

UCCI expands classes with Penn State hook-up

| 30/09/2014 | 0 Comments

The University College of the Cayman Islands is using technology to increase learning opportunities for its students. The college has entered into an on-line partnership with Pennsylvania State University’s World Campus to ensure students can take specialist course that may otherwise be too costly or keep up with classes that are cut locally because of low student numbers.  “At UCCI we are always seeking to build strategic alliances, both locally and internationally, so as to afford our students opportunities to access the best learning experiences available,” UCCI President Roy Bodden said.

He said the local college’s size should not impeded students’ access to excellent educational opportunities. The on-line access to Penn course can also help working adults who may want to update their knowledge or skills.
This alliance synchronises with UCCI’s 10th charter year as a University College offering graduate, undergraduate, technical, and professional training in the Cayman Islands.

“It has always been my vision to compensate for the constraints of size, financial affordability and changing technologies by developing relationships with institutions on the cutting edge of educational developments,” Bodden added. “Building alliances with reputable institutions such as Penn State affords UCCI students access to their resources, reputation and academic integrity which a small institution like UCCI would normally find as being unaffordable and unsustainable.”

To learn more about the UCCI-approved courses available through Penn State’s World Campus, existing students should check with their advisors or department heads. Non-students may contact UCCI’s Admissions Office by calling (345) 623-0507

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NWDA should do permits

| 30/09/2014 | 34 Comments

(CNS): The immigration department should be concentrating on border control the employment minister and her councillor have stated. Although Tara Rivers admitted that transitioning the National Workforce Development Agency to deal with the recruitment process for permit applications would require a considerable amount of work and resources, she said it was something she would hope to achieve during her tenure. Speaking at a presentation Friday at the NWDA about the progress at the agency, Winston Connolly the councillor in the ministry said he believed that there should be a very clear role for immigration which was border control and not recruitment.

As a result of the massive demand for overseas workers in the Cayman Islands the Immigration department has, by default, immerged as the government’s recruitment agency making the final decision on every foreign worker who has been recruited for all jobs from gardeners to bankers, as well as dealing with enforcement issues.
Connolly said however, that he believed it was clear that immigration should be concerned only with the security questions surrounding imported workers.

“Immigration should be about border control and the NWDA should be the central body that deals with the employment, training and the work permit side of things in terms of people coming in and applying for jobs,” he said. Pointing to what he said was a lot of room for growth at the agency, he said, given the right financing and personnel it should deal with all of the recruitment side of things leaving immigration to police the borders. “It should be two clear roles,” he added.

The minister supported the comments of her councillor and C4C political colleague but said that while that was the goal it was up to her as minister to try and address the immediate needs of the unemployed now. Transitioning the NWDA as the clearing house for permits would require new legislation and a government restructure.

“That’s where we need to get to but we need to make sure we don’t just have that as the goal and don’t address the immediate needs now,” she said. But Rivers agreed that with the commitment and support from wider government and if legislation could be prioritized in the bottle neck of drafting it would be possible to reshape the way permits are handled.

She said she was tasked with working with the mechanisms and infrastructure that are currently in place and to make those work best for local people looking for work and for business trying to get the right people. The minster stated that there was recognition that government can’t work in silos and as a result a cross ministerial committee had been formed so everyone was working on the battle to address local unemployment.

With the goal of a one stop shop for recruitment and permit process still an ideal rather than a reality she said it was important in the meantime to create what she described as “better synergies” between the immigration department and the NWDA.

“Previously there was no nexus between NWDA and immigration so I am thrilled to be the minister responsible that has done that,” she conceded that there was still work to do but that communication link alone was a great improvement.

The minister said however that government had to examine where the regulation of employment law is best placed and to shift it all to the NWDA would have to be a decision made by all of government. In the interim she said that five new enforcement officers announced by the premier last year are currently being recruited but there was still no start date for these individuals. Acknowledging some of the problems and barriers faced by the unemployed she said companies can and should be doing a lot more to train their staff.

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Girls’ football moves to Saturday mornings

| 30/09/2014 | 0 Comments

(CUC-GPFL): The ‘new’ Girls’ Primary Football League (GPFL), which is scheduled to begin this Saturday, October 4th, will be sponsored and coordinated by Caribbean Utilities Company, Ltd. (CUC). The GPFL will runalongside the popular CUC Primary Football League (PFL). Several primary schools across the Island have been participating in the GPFL for the past few years but with CUC now taking responsibility for the League, it was decided to move the games from during the week to Saturday mornings. The girls’ games will now be played at 10:00 a.m. between the CUC Primary Football League (PFL) Under 9 games that begin at 9:00 a.m. and the Under 11 games scheduled for 11:00 a.m.

The PFL Committee has been working closely with Martha Godet and representatives from the Women’s Committee who have been designated by the Cayman Islands Football Association (CIFA) to develop the women’s game in the Cayman Islands. In certain instances, the Women’s Committee has provided personnel to assist with coaching a few of the school teams and will strive to provide female referees to officiate the GPFL games.

The decision to move the games to Saturday mornings was aimed at assisting the Women’s Committee in monitoring young female players playing at the primary school level. In addition, the Saturday morning games gives parents the chance to watch and support their daughters, something that was very difficult for them to do when games were being played during school hours on weekdays.

The GPFL will cater to girls under the age of 11 and will follow similar rules that apply to the PFL Under 9 league. Participating schools are split into the same two divisions as the PFL with Group A consisting of Cayman International School, George Town Primary, Savannah Primary, Sir John A. Cumber Primary and St. Ignatius Prep. Group B includes Bodden Town Primary, Cayman Prep, NorthEast School, Prospect Primary, Red Bay Primary and Triple C.
The PFL Committee urges everyone to come out on Saturday mornings to the various primary schools and other venues across the Island and support these young PFL and GPFL players.

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