One hundred and twenty-nine (129) Saint Lucians received their certificates at a graduation ceremony held on Thursday, October 27, at the Pastoral Centre, in Marisule, Gros Islet.
The graduates participated in the “Youth and Women’s Entrepreneurship and Financial Inclusion” and “Business Incubator for Start-up Enterprises” programmes, both of which are funded by the Government of the Republic of China (Taiwan).
The graduation ceremony was the culmination of months of professional training for the entrepreneurs facilitated by Sir Arthur Lewis Community College (SALCC).
Seventy-three (73) graduates completed the Jennès Vocational Skills Training Programme, while fifty-six (56) did the Business Incubator for Start-up Enterprises Programme.
Graduates who received certificates for the Youth and Women’s Entrepreneurship and Financial Inclusion Programme did either of three courses: Digital and Creative Entrepreneurship, Early Childhood Development, and Heath Aide. Special awards were also presented to students who performed exceptionally. Recipients of the Top Achiever Trophy were as follows:
- Elaine Clersaint — Health Aide (South)
- Lisa Yarde — Health Aide (North)
- Lenora Moses — Digital and Creative Entrepreneurship
- Nola Alexander — Early Childhood Development
In his remarks, His Excellency Peter Chia-yen Chen, Taiwan’s Ambassador to Saint Lucia, congratulated the graduates for their hard work, and encouraged them to make the most of what they learned for the betterment of their communities.
“Former U.S. President John F. Kennedy once said the following: ‘We must use time as a tool, not as a couch.’ What Kennedy was basically saying is that while we have time, we must make the most practical use of it. Over the past few months, graduates, you have done just that. You’ve made the best use of your time to turn yourself more professionally into entrepreneurs. We could not be more proud of you, so you deserve a big round of applause,” Ambassador Chen told the graduates.
In her opening remarks, Dr. Merle St. Clair-Auguste, Acting Principal of SALCC, congratulated the graduates for persevering despite facing many challenges along the way. She urged them to use their knowledge gained to make a meaningful contribution to society.
“You are well on your way to contributing meaningfully to your country, to your community,” she told the graduates. “You are using your talents, skills, creativity, and experience to work and share with your friends, family and us to improve all of our lives.”
Ms. Esther Rigobert, Permanent Secretary in the Office of the Prime Minister, was also one of the speakers at the graduation. She urged the graduates to challenge themselves by always striving for excellence.
“You all have achieved something significant,” Rigobert told the graduates. “You are all dreamers. It started with an idea and you dared to dream. You desired to enhance your skills and abilities, to develop your product concepts, to seek the support of the Government and other stakeholders, and to participate more meaningfully in our nation’s development.”
Other special guests at the graduation ceremony included Dr. Pauline Antoine-Prospere, Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Education, Sustainable Development, Innovation, Science, Technology and Vocational Training; Mr. Elsi Lafeuille, Director for Commerce and Industry; and Mr. Ajani Lebourne, Guest Speaker — Youth Leader, Training and Development Professional.
SOURCE: Embassy of the Republic of China (Taiwan)