By Christopher Tobutt
More than 40 different companies and organisations took part in Cayman Islands Further Education Centre CIFEC opened its doors for their annual Careers Fair, and more than 100 CIFEC students were busy talking to their representatives to see just what careers they might like to pursue, and signing up for their internship programmes.
Jenine Stewart, Career Services Manager, said: “At CIFEC the students will go to work two days per week, and they are in school for three days. The internship programme starts in October each year, and it ends in April the following year. We have 200 students on roll, and we have the awesome task of placing all of these students in work places. Thus the Career Fair today.”
Ms Stewart said that in addition to the40 companies represented in the CIFEC Common Room, there were an additional 60 companies taking part in the programme. “Its been an awesome partnership with the community and we are really grateful of the help they have given us,” she said.
Jarod Wilson, Senior HR Representative at Appleby was joined by Tabias Bush, a former CIFEC student and intern who shone so brightly Appleby gave him a permanent job. “We come here year after year,” Mr. Wilson said, “I think it’s really important for the kids to get some work experience. Every year we take on a number of interns from CIFEC, and Last year we took on five students from here. Some work in IT, some in HR, some work in finance, some work in compliance, and then we have some working in the operations team as well.
Mr. Bush was clearly pleased by his success since joining the company: “I’ve been full-time for over four years now,” as a business administrator. It’s been good. I was an archive clerk at first, and I got promoted recently.
Samantha Dilbert, a 16-year-old CIFEC student, said “I am looking for jobs or careers in graphic designing and maybe something in writing. So far today I have talked to the National Gallery, the Reef Resort, and the Marriott Beach Resort,” she likes art, but is also interested in a job in the Hospitality industry, she said. Her friend, Denoia McLean Ebanks, had just finished talking to representatives of the Ritz – Carlton Hotel. Like Samantha, Denoia loves art most of all, but doesn’t feel she can necessarily make a s as an artist. “I signed up for the Kirk Market, National Gallery, and other hotels – I gave them my resume, told them all about myself, answered their questions and asked their questions, and wrote down anything they wanted me to write down. I like hospitality, I like to serve people and be good to people, so I thought the hotels would be a good choice for me so I was just looking around to see which one would be the best choice.
The Cayman Turtle Centre had a booth, too. The Centre usually takes on several interns a year. Managing Director Tim Adam said: “Cayman Turtle Centre is very keen on continuing to develop people. We have achieved a situation where, with a total of 104 staff, we only have three on work permits. Bearing that in mind, we only achieve that by finding and by continuing to develop local people. The CIFEC Career fair is an excellent way that young people, who are considering their career choice, can see some of the jobs that we have available,” he said.