A new mentoring programme designed to attract Caymanians to professions in the construction industry got under way with a reception at the Discovery Centre in Camana Bay on Wednesday, 9 December.
The cost-free programme is an initiative of the Cayman Society of Architects, Surveyors and Engineers – better known as CASE. It involves local high school or university students participating in four one-day sessions once a month between January and April, during which they will learn about various aspects of the construction industry.
The participating students were selected after the short presentations made by CASE members at various schools in October and November.
John Harvey, the director of the mentoring programme, said he and CASE President Craig Nixon had been working on the mentoring programme for many months.
“We hope the programme will encourage young folks to consider a career in construction industry,” he said, adding Wednesday’s reception was an opportunity for the students to meet their mentors.
“The real emphasis tonight is for you to get to know each other,” he told them.
Mr. Nixon said there were a lot of career opportunities in Cayman’s construction industry.
“Our job as the mentors will be to help showcase the opportunities that exist, and guide the students through the many challenges that may be faced,” he said. “We will also highlight that there is an attainable route towards having a rewarding meaningful career, which hopefully will enhance their lives.”
Mr. Nixon said CASE sees the mentoring programme as something that can benefit the students, the construction industry and the Cayman Islands.
He said although many other professions in the Cayman Islands offer established mentoring programmes, there hasn’t been one focused on the construction industry before.
“As most professionals will explain, building a career at such a young age can be extremely difficult, but with mentored guidance and support, the journey becomes so much easier and rewarding for everyone involved,” Mr. Nixon said.
Architect Burns Conolly, a member of CASE, gave a slide presentation and talk about some of the construction processes employed to create Camana Bay. He said there were many disciplines in the construction industry, including architecture, engineering, interior design, artistic rendering and project management, just to name a few.
Mr. Conolly also spoke about how a career in the construction industry can be personally rewarding when one looks at a completed project like Camana Bay.
“You can get great satisfaction thinking of something years in the past and having it executed and then living it,” he said. “That’s some of the beauty of being an architect.”
For their first session in January, the students will visit the Arch & Godfrey job site at The WaterColours condominium project on West Bay Road.
In addition to Mr. Nixon and Mr. Harvey, other mentors include Louis Mussington, Chris Graham, Garth Arch, Bryan Fitzgerald, Celesia Bancroft, Frank Reed, Jonathan Ashton and Avatar Mathura. Students participating in the mentoring programme who attended Wednesday’s reception included Derrymore Lyon; Hugh Small from UCCI; Enver Rivers from Triple C; Brandon Thompson of the Cayman Islands Further Education Centre; Aaliyah Webster of the Cayman Islands Further Education Centre; Nathan Trumbach of St. Ignatius; William Hayward of St. Ignatius; and Jacob Schultz of St. Ignatius.