By Christopher Tobutt
Inspire Cayman training celebrated the achievement of 27 Caymanians in fine style at the Grand Cayman Marriott Beach Resort on Saturday 25 March, with the theme, ‘Inspiring Hope.’ Government dignitaries attending the event included Hon. Premier Wayne Panton, André Ebanks, MP. Minister of Financial Services and Commerce, Hon. Dwayne Seymour Minister Border Control and Labour, Hon. Kenneth Bryan, Minister of Tourism and Ports, and Hon. Roy McTaggart, Leader of the Opposition.
Inspire Cayman Training was Founder ,Michael Myles’ dream long before he was able to make it real. Mr. Myles spoke of many hours driving to meet employers to find out exactly what they wanted, and where the gaps in training and workforce preparation were before Inspire Cayman finally opened its doors in February 2019. Since then, many hundreds of Caymanians have benefitted from the many different internationally accredited training programmes that Inspire Cayman offers, helping young Caymanians get real-life jobs in well-paid technical and vocational jobs, which have traditionally been filled by work-permit holders form overseas.
In an inspirational address, Mr. Myles drew on his own struggles making his dream a reality and shared that it is only through praying for strength to endure the storms of life, rather than by running from them, that we grow and get stronger: “If we are going to understand resiliency we are going to have to stop running from difficult tasks, “ he said.
He spoke of all the people who had strengthened and inspired him, including his mother, Grace, and grandmothers Esther Myles, Daphne Smith and Rebecca Hydes, along with all his mentors and coaches and friends. “My faith in God has taught me over the past 49 years of my life, daring greatly is not about being a loser, it is about courage. Courage starts with showing up and letting ourselves be seen. Our honorees have shown tremendous amounts of courage of courage, perseverance, and excellence,” he said.
“At Inspire, we inspire citizenship, hopefulness, persistence, hard work, commitment, accountability and dedication. And, yes, we teach people how to operate heavy equipment, and diving, teach people how to build a house, and many other vocations. But when you ask most of our alumni what they caught from our training it is normally the belief that they can succeed in life, and be whatever they want, once they apply themselves and trust the process .
Premier Panton praised Mr. Myles, and Inspire Cayman Training for bringing hope, and making dreams become reality for so many Caymanians. “Ladies and Gentlemen I want to thank Michael and his team for providing technical and vocational education and training, it is something that we talk a lot about...in the past I have sponsored some young Caymanians to come on your course. Michael sometimes comes across as being tough, and we have to be sometimes. We have to be honest, life is not easy.
“Like many of us, the pandemic forced Michael to rethink exactly how this was going to work, to rethink training and how they were going to deliver, and Inspire Training is now able to provide 4,000 professional development training programmes across diversified industries Ladies and gentlemen, that’s a phenomenal achievement.
There were several presentations from graduates, including certified Dive Instructor Cameron D’Hue, who told the story of how his fascination with the sea began by listening to stories his seafaring grandfather told him. Later, growing up in West Bay, he would ask the people he saw on the dive boats “What it was like down there,” and they would always answer, “It’s amazing”. He said it was then that his ambition shifted from going above the sea, to going below it. Every day is different, as he sees the undersea world and he loves the privilege of introducing visitors to it, he said.