Graduates of the third Technology Leadership Forum (TLF) Internship Programme, which aims to encourage Bermuda’s youth develop further their interested in Information Communication Technology (ICT), were celebrated at a ceremony at the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club on Thursday, August 25th, 2011.
The 2011 TLF interns participated in an intensive 12 week summer internship where they acquired experience in the ICT industry through classroom learning, team projects and fieldwork as members of staff at participating companies.
The TLF was founded four years ago because of an identified need for qualified Bermudian talent in the ICT field and is run in partnership with private sector technology companies and organizations. It has recently received registered charity status.
The TLF comprises of key influencers and leaders in the technology industry in Bermuda. Their prime objectives are to encourage dialogue, address issues, propose action steps, mentoring and to be a networking group amongst peers.
The Minister of Business Development and Tourism the Hon. Patrice Minors, JP, MP said “The TLF ultimately prepares our young ICT talent for the future. It is also about inspiring the next generation of technology leaders that can help fuel innovation and using technology to help everyone, everyday, everywhere. Congratulations to the participants. I hope to see you at the forefront of Bermuda’s ICT industry in the coming years, and hope that you will return one day to mentor other students enrolled in the TLF. ”
The 2011 programme culminated in the August 25th graduation, where the interns received a certificate of excellence, which allows industry partners to know the level of expertise they bring to the table because they successfully completed the curriculum designed by the TLF partners.
During the classroom training sessions, students focused on modules such as Business Continuity, Project Management, Data Warehousing, Programming, and Networking, to name a few. These modules were taught by industry professionals and were meant to provide the students with a basic overview of the topics. It is the hope of the TLF that these modules will encourage students to focus on areas of study which are of the greatest need in Bermuda businesses.
One of the benefits of this internship program is the networking opportunities available to the students and the local ICT partners. Additionally, the partners know that students graduating from the program can become beneficial members of the company’s workforce with experience and hands on training. And a success of the programme is the the hiring of TLF internship graduates by organizations such as the Bermuda Hospitals Board, ICS, Nova Limited and BELCO.
Three special awards were also handed out. The Most Outstanding Student Award was given to two interns who had made a positive and lasting impression on the TLF sponsor companies during the summer internship, embodying the objectives of the TLF Internship Programme. While academic and work performance was critical in the consideration of the most outstanding student, these interns leadership potential, maturity and growth during the programme was impressive. This year’s winners were Hannah Collins and Matthew Coelho.
The Most Improved Student Award was given to the intern who had intern who had made great strides in the Programme, taking the instruction and opportunities provided to enhance their skill. While the intern’s performance was an important factor, change in the intern over the summer in their professionalism, networking skill and drive was recognized. This year’s winner was Cornell Castle.
The final award was the TLF ICT Professional Recognition Award. The success of the TLF Internship Programme rests with the participation of ICT professionals who give of their time and expertise through teaching, mentoring and networking with each year’s interns. In a programme where the interns are expected to go above and beyond, it is no surprise that the ICT professionals involved do so as well and more. The ICT Professional Recognition Award is the interns’ acknowledgment of an ICT professional who made an impact on the cohort by providing instruction, advice and counsel to enable them to move towards their career goals. This year the award was given to Jamie Ball of Nova Limited.
The Co-Chairs of the TLF, Dion Tucker, Christian Blais and Nancy Volesky thanked the numerous companies who sponsored the 2011 programme including BELCO, Bermuda Hospitals Board, Quo Vadis, the Department of E-Commerce, ICS, RenaissanceRe, North Rock Communications, Logic, Ignition and the Bermuda College. They also thanked the companies who provided the training: the Department of Labour & Training/ Bermuda Careers Centre, the Department of E-Commerce, Bermuda Hospitals Board, BELCO, First Atlantic Commerce, PriceWaterhouse Coopers, Ernst & Young, Nova Limited and RenaissanceRe.