HSBC offers 5 full scholarships at UCCI

| 12/08/2009

(CNS): Having increased its scholarship financing for the coming academic year, HSBC Cayman also has plans to expand the scholarship programme to include a robust internship programme that gives students essential work experience. In addition, HSBC is open to working with the Ministry of Education to explore ways to speak with students in local high schools about career development and the benefits of obtaining a university education, a release from the bank states.

According to HSBC, the bank is partnering with the University College of the Cayman Islands (UCCI) starting this Fall semester 2009 to provide full scholarships for 5 students, either full or part-time, to complete an associates or bachelor’s degree. Although these scholarships focus on students in business-related degree programs like finance, accounting, insurance, IT and marketing, students pursuing other courses of study are also eligible to apply.

Students are encouraged to submit an application immediately for Fall 2009. The deadline for submissions has been extended in order to provide more students the opportunity to access scholarship funds to begin or continue their studies this upcoming semester.

This new partnership between HSBC Cayman and UCCI is not the bank’s first scholarship program. Previously, the HSBC scholarship was extended to one deserving student per year. For example, Laura McLaughlin, a recipient of the HSBC Cayman scholarship who received her bachelor’s and master’s degree overseas, has returned to Cayman and now works in the bank’s insurance group.

In the current environment, however, HSBC Cayman firmly believes that to ensure a greater impact on the community, more students need to have the same opportunity as McLaughlin. By partnering with UCCI, the bank is able to achieve this goal as it will be able to support more students to successfully complete their degrees.

According to Mary Ann Cannon, Director of Student Services at UCCI, “We are so grateful for HSBC’s efforts to develop this scholarship programme! I am proud to say that HSBC is a valued partner in education!”

In light of the concerns described in recent press statements on the issues facing Caymanian youth, the Cayman Islands government has reacted very positively to this recent partnership between HSBC Cayman and UCCI. According to the Leader of Government Business McKeeva Bush, “The goal of the Cayman Islands government is to educate and prepare students to be successful in the job market. We are extremely pleased that HSBC Cayman has stepped up to make a difference without the government having to ask for help. We encourage other companies in the private sector to follow HSBC’s example. Along with my counterparts in the Ministry of Education, I look forward to working together with companies in the private sector like HSBC to make a difference this year and for the future.”

Minister of Education, Training and Employment Rolston Anglin, echoed Bush’s sentiment. “Given the current economic downturn and its effect on the local job market, this administration plans to make tertiary education a priority for recent high school graduates. I am therefore grateful to HSBC for making funds available, which will allow 5 Caymanian youngsters access to tertiary education. We welcome commitments such as this, from the corporate community and private individuals, and hope that others will follow HSBC’s lead.”

While the HSBC Cayman scholarship program for Fall 2009 involves purely a financial award to cover primarily tuition expenses at UCCI, the bank is planning to grow the programme in 2010 so that students can benefit from the scholarship programme beyond just financial support.

HSBC Cayman’s CEO, Gonzalo Jalles, further explains the importance of expanding the scholarship programme. “Work experience is essential to being competitive in almost every industry—not just the financial sector. Assuch, HSBC Cayman is researching the best way to expand the scholarship programme to include a robust internship programme that gives students essential work experience. In addition, HSBC is open to working with the Ministry of Education to explore ways to speak with students in local high schools about career development and the benefits of obtaining a university education. HSBC Cayman also intends to explore additional partnerships with other local institutions of higher learning to expand the programme’s reach in 2010 and beyond.”

Jalles goes on to say that the primary goal of the HSBC Cayman scholarship is to help local Caymanians be competitive in the local market in any industry they choose to work. “Of course, we would like to support students that are pursuing a career in financial services because the bank is always looking to gain access to more Caymanian talent. While only 30% of our current employee pool is on work permits compared to the market average of 50%, we constantly look to provide increased opportunities for local employees. The bank’s new scholarship programme allows us the opportunity to become familiar with Caymanian students that have the potential to become permanent employees.”

“However,” Jalles clarifies, “The greater need in the community is for Caymanians to be more competitive in all industries. Therefore, if HSBC Cayman can help even a few students to gain a competitive edge wherever they choose to work in the Islands, then the scholarship programme has served its purpose.”

For more information about the program, students may contact, Cherisse Merren, HSBC Cayman’s Marketing Manager at 914-7585 or by emailing, Application materials are also available on the HSBC website.

 Photo: CEO HSBC Cayman Gonzalo Jalles; LoGB McKeeva Bush; Education Minister Rolston Anglin; and Financial Secretary Kenneth Jefferson.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    I think the simple point Nationalism was making, and which seemed to be misunderstood is that in most countries HSBC would be congratulated on providing the scholarships to young people and the nationality of those young persons would not be a matter of comment.  Here the comment is well done for helping young Caymanians.  When we stop seeing people as labels and seeing people as people then we are all likely to be better off.

    The fact that two out of the three responses to that comment were along the lines of "get a flight home" is scary.  That is the response of aggreived, angry, usually ill-educated, nationalistic far right wingers everywhere in the world. 

    • Anonymous says:

      It is a poignant and very relevant response nonetheless. And yes, I am educated and nationalistic, but not angry, aggreived or far-right.

    • Anonymous says:

      I can assure that I am not ill-educated, nationalistic or a far rightwinger. Aggrieved, certainly. Especially when we read such idiotic comments by someone who is supposed to be a guest in our country. If I had a house-guest who made offensive comments to me you bet he would be tossed out on his ear.

      You seem to miss the point. You cannot make comparisons with other countries. Cayman has a unique situation where Caymanians are a minority in our own country in which the highest paying jobs are typically held by expats because it is said Caymanians do not have the necessary qualifications, experience, exposure etc etc. to fill them. I hope you will agree that it is undesirable that that situation continue indefinitely or it will itself have serious social repercussions. The answer is that you provide opportunities for Caymanians to bridge the gap.  That is what HSBC is helping to do and that is why it very appropriate for them to state that they are helping young Caymanians. 

      The concept is not far removed from that of Affirmative Action in the U.S.

       We both know that the real world is not colour-blind, nationality blind, class-blind etc. We know that Canadians give preferential treatment to Canadians, the rich feel they are a part of an exclusive club that offer benefits only to them etc. etc..  Why are we supposed to pretend otherwise? You appear to live In Utopia.  

  2. Nationalism . . . says:

    "Preparing young Caymanians for the future!"  I have lived in many countries.  In none of them have there been so many many references to the protection of the local nationality over other residents than in Cayman.  In any developed country this would be consdiered exrteme right wing nationalism.  Here it is the norm.  it is disgusting

    • Anonymous says:

      What an idiotic comment. Ensuring that young Caymanians are educated and able to compete is disgusting?! Clearly you would prefer that Caymanians be an underclass to expats. It is your attitude that is disgusting. It is people like you that we can do without.     

    • Anonymous says:

      HSBC is doing an EXCELLENT job in the community! and how dare you say its disgusting! People like you are DISGUSTING!!!  If we do not giveany opportunities to our own  then who will?

      if you think it is so disgusting… why are you here? Cayman Airways will be happy to take you back to "the many countires you have lived"


    • Anonymous says:

      Dear Nationalism,

      There is no need for you to stay if you find it so disgusting and offensive. Catch a flight and Happy Trails to you!

      • Nationalism . . . says:

        Ah bless, the "if you don’t like it then go home" gambit was played very early on this one. 

        • Anonymous says:

          Seems like sound advice rather than a "gambit". If I went to a party and I find it offensive or "disgusting" I would leave and go back home or find another party. I would certainly not stay for the party and continually carp about how disgusting it is.    

          • Frequent Flyer says:

            I agree with the writer that the constant focus of the nationality of individuals is offensive, and certainly non-Christian (you should read and understand the Good Samaritan).  The reaction to the result of the Miss Cayman pageant highlighted how pathetic this bigotry is.

            I should not have to live with narrow minded bigots in a British territory in the 21st Century.  It is not like a party at all.  The comparison is banal and shows how deep rooted such racism can be.  If I have married someone from here, have a family here, run a business here, then the "fly back home if you don’t like our narrow mindedness" line is very much more complex than popping into a party full of racists and deciding to walk out.  But you can be sure that I do not choose to mix with people who talk or think like you do, and yes this influences my decisions when to hire or promote people.

            • Anonymous says:

              What nonsense. The U.S. has many scholarships which are reserved for particular minorities (e.g. African American, Latino etc.) and many that require you to be a U.S. citizen.  There are obviously a lot more expat simpletons here than we thought. And to think they claim Caymanians are not exposed.

              The HRC was clearly wrong in thinking we would not have people who would try to use a free-standing non-discrimination clause in the Constitution to take away preferences for Caymanians with respect to scholarships.  

    • anon1 says:

      On behalf of myself and all young Caymanians that are trying to beter themselves ……….. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU HSBC.

      It is responsible Corporate Citizens like you HSBC that make me proud to be a Caymanian.

      As for you Nationalism …………… OOOH don’t get me started on you…………..


  3. Anonymous says:

    What the elected government should do is look at the ones who didnt get a chance to graduate from High School, we all humans, we all make mistakes, you have alot lot out there that made some stupid mistakes, and didnt get to graduate, but want to make something out of thier life. (like myself) someone really needs to look into that. Cuz everybody deserves a second chance…..

    • Anonymous says:

      Didn’t get a chance to graduate from high school?  What are you even talking about, you can graduate from High School in Grand Cayman without even passing grades, you just need to have 80% attendance.  Do you really think we should help people who are so lazy they can’t even get out of bed 8 out of 10 times?  Your attitude is where the "lazy Caymanian" comes into play.  It isn’t fair or just if hard working Caymanians have to suppose those lazy ones who "can’t even graduate from high school."

  4. Anonymous says:

    This is truly welcomed, I hope that more private institutions will follow HSBC’s good example; also thanks to the Government for engineering this.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Excellent that they did this without government asking: well done

  6. Quincy Brown says:

    Excellent! Thanks HSBC and Thanks to the elected government of the day! Please also remember Cayman Brac students – some of the greatest minds in the Cayman Islands!!  May all other priavate sector companies follow the good example of HSBC!  We must invest in the tertiary education of our people.

    Preparing young Caymanians for the future!


    Quincy Brown