YES Programme hospitality class students sit final exams

Instructor Dominic Steven (standing) invigilates as members of his class sit the final exams.

St. Kitts (September 9, 2010) — Thursday September 2 was an important day for the 18 students of the Keys Community Centre-based Youth Empowerment through Skills (YES) Programme hospitality and hotel trades class.

According to their instructor, Dominic Steven, that was the day the students sat their third and final exams after an extensive and exhaustive training period that lasted just over five months. 25 students were initially enrolled for the class but only 18 sat the final exams that were offered at Football House in Basseterre.

“This is my third class in the YES Programme,” said Steven. “This was a very special group in terms of the level of competition in the classroom and from the academic performance point of view which was very high. We have some six trainees all who scored 100 percent in the previous two exams and I am waiting to see what the results for this one will be, but I do expect a high pass mark from this exam.”

During the five months of training, the students also did two practical presentations, the first of which was a drink/cocktail presentation. The second practical was a customer service practical presentation where they served persons and demonstrated what they learnt. The presentation involved serving lunch to members of the successful St. Kitts-Nevis Male U17 football team.

“Going forward the trainees are now aware that they are going to be placed on job attachments,” observed Steven. “In fact two from this class have already been attached at the Rituals Coffee House in Frigate Bay. We had meetings with the Marriott, Carambola and also Fairview where we are looking to put these trainees for their job attachment which will be for a period of two to three months.”

The YES Programme continues and according to instructor Dominic Steven, who is assisted by Jasmine Lake-Isaac, interviews for the next six-month training course for the hospitality and hotel trades will begin next week but the class will meet for the first time on September 21.

Students Vonyea Akers 22, and Chevis Browne 18, who were in Steven’s class said that the training was helpful to them and they hope that after the attachment they will be able to get jobs as St. Kitts is transforming its economy to be service based where hospitality plays a key role.

Akers who is originally from Tabernacle but has been living in Newtown said that before she joined the hospitality class she had done a hairdressing course with the YES Programme. She got a certificate and says that she has high hopes of passing the final exams in the hospitality and hotel trades course as she had done well in the first two papers.

“YES Programme has been helpful to all of us,” said Akers. “It helps you to learn a lot before you go out into the field. It helps you understand what you will need to do when you are out there and what not to do, especially in the hospitality industry it helps you a lot. I prefer to get a job in the first instance and will only go into personal business after I gain enough experience.”

Chevis Browne who hails from Keys Village attended the CFB College after high school and did a course in computer technology. By joining the YES Programme to train in the hospitality and hotel trades it has afforded him the opportunity to be a multi-skilled person as he says that a modern St. Kitts and Nevis requires people who can perform well in more than one field.

“YES Programme has been very helpful in what I am trying to go for,” said Browne in explaining why he took the hospitality course. “There is future in bar tending. Right now in St. Kitts there is tourism which the government is pushing forward to be the main engine of growth after the sugar industry came to a close, it is the tourism industry that will bring the money.”

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