Students gain hands-on experience at Digicel

Three local students from John Gray High School recently got a taste of the telecommunications industry while on a two-week work experience programme at Digicel.

Catherine Ebanks, 15, displayed a keen interest in marketing and was eager to put her creative mind to the test by joining Digicel’s active marketing department, said a Digicel press release.

Catherine assisted in various tasks within the marketing department including merchandising in Digicel’s dealer stores and creating point of sale materials.

Her primary project was researching and creating her own marketing campaign. The project required Catherine to conduct market research by composing a questionnaire, distributing it and summarizing her research findings. At the end of her two weeks, she created a presentation that outlined recommendations for action in a campaign plan utilising a mix of advertising media.

‘It is always flattering when someone takes an interest in your job,’ said marketing manager Tina Trumbach. ‘Marketing is an excellent field to get involved in as it provides the freedom of creativity and imagination while also applying sound business principles.’

Technical department

Aspiring engineer Andrew Ebanks, 16, showed an enthusiastic attitude during his internship with Digicel’s technical department since he thoroughly enjoys electrical technology and plans to pursue a career in that field upon his graduation in 2006.

Andrew was given the opportunity to learn about the planning that goes into ensuring smooth operations of a telecommunications company.

He visited network cell sites checking over equipment for hurricane preparedness and helping to test the site generators for back-up power at remote locations. He was also given an overview of Digicel’s Mobile Switching Centre and received instruction on the function, operation and maintenance of radio base stations.

Digicel’s head of technology, Victor Salgado, said, ‘It is great to see students taking interest in the technical side of the telecommunications industry. Maintaining our network infrastructure is the most important job in telecommunications as without it we would not be able to provide service to our customers.’

Accounting system

A strong mathematician, Avisa Tahal, 15, was eager to learn more about the importance of keeping accurate accounts and decided to join Digicel’s finance department. Avisa was exposed to all aspects of the company’s accounting system and was able to gain a broad understanding of the company’s day to day financial transactions. The knowledge Avisa gained during her time with Digicel should prove useful, since she plans to pursue a career in accounting.

Digicel’s financial controller Christopher Saunders said, ‘Digicel’s finance function is a key area of the business. As someone who is interested in a career in accounting, the inside view of the operations of a busy finance department of a major telecommunications company will help Avisa once she gets to a point in her career when she has to put theory into practice.

‘During her time here, Avisa had visibility of our billing and payables functions and provided valuable admin assistance to our staff in these areas.’

The staff at Digicel thoroughly enjoyed having the students on board and were impressed with their overall performance.

‘It is always great to see such enthusiastic students,’ said Digicel’s CEO, John D. Buckley. ‘We take pride in welcoming young Caymanians to the Digicel team and hope that these students will consider Digicel when making their future career choices.’