Hundreds Graduate from YES Project
Basseterre, St. Kitts, August 27, 2010 (SKNIS): More than 700 young people have been certified as competent in various technical skills acquired through the Youth Empowerment through Skills (YES) Project.
The third and final ceremony was held on Thursday (August 26) at the St. Johnson Community Center. The proceedings were chaired by Accountant General Levi Bradshaw who reflected on the March 2009 launch of the social development, work-experience and job placement programme for persons between the ages of 16 to 35 years. He highlighted the importance of the project.
“We need trained technicians. We need trained mechanics, we need trained persons in hospitality, trained persons in construction,” Mr. Bradshaw stressed, citing the growth of various industries. “To date Project YES has facilitated well over 1,200 participants. We have also been able to provide opportunities for persons with special skills [who] functioned as trainers and facilitators and we have had the benefit of having persons attached to well over 38 businesses. … this has been a success and we are here today to [celebrate] that.”
The graduates were drawn from the various focus areas included in the Project. Minister of Youth Empowerment Honourable Glenn Phillip assumed the Ministerial portfolio responsible for the YES initiative on February 07, 2010. He told the graduating class that this was a proud moment and encouraged them to do some soul searching.
“I would like to encourage all the graduates to think positively of the future that lies before you. Each of you must think of maximizing the benefits of your training which not only provided you with technical skill … but also with self disciplinary concepts and attitude that will help you to achieve success in life,” he remarked. “I want also to encourage you to impress and influence your [peers] with the acquisition of such positive skills and attitudes so that they too would desire to acquire similar experiences … and ultimately contribute to the growth of our nation.”
Director of the National Skills Training Programme (NSTP) Fritzroy Wilkin encouraged the participants not to view this as an ending but rather, a step towards a professional career.
“You should see this as a beginning because you have now laid a foundation in your respective occupational areas and you should begin to build on that foundation whether it is to start your own business or to advance your studies,” he emphasized.
Those who are continuing their education were encouraged to consider enrolling in the NSTP, the Advanced Vocational and Education Center (AVEC) or the Technical Division of the C. F. Bryant College.
YES graduates that did not attend in the graduation ceremonies can collect their certificates at the YES Secretariat. The YES Project continues for the remaining participants.