John Gray students hone interview skills

Jordana Clarke, head of training and development at Walkers law firm, interviews student Allena Rankine.

Focusing on exuding professionalism, aptitude and motivation, Year 11 students at John Gray High School recently took part in mock interviews as part of the school’s Career Activities Week. The event was designed to inform students about the prospects available to them in the workforce and what it takes to be competitive in a global marketplace.

Student Ariaya Russell is interviewed by Beth Hiryok, training manager from Red Sail Sports.
Student Ariaya Russell is interviewed by Beth Hiryok, training manager from Red Sail Sports.

A press release states the interviews, which took place on Wednesday, Feb. 17, were intended to help the students prepare for future careers when they leave school.

Representatives from a number of local businesses conducted simulated job interviews with the students, asking questions they would expect real-life candidates to answer.

Appleby, Cayman Airways, Creative Tech, CUC, Deloitte, Ernst & Young, Health City, Maples and Calder, Grand Cayman Marriott Beach Resort, Public Works Department, Red Sail Sports, the Turtle Farm and Walkers all took part.

The mock interviews tested the students’ communication skills, ability to write a coherent resume and cover letter, attention to dress code and professional appearance, and the confidence to ask relevant questions.

“The idea behind the interviews was to provide students with an opportunity to demonstrate their interviewing skills, and to receive constructive feedback from industry professionals,” said careers services manager Heather-Ann Cahill, who is based at the Cayman Islands Further Education Centre and helped organize the event.

“Additionally, students were able to network with company representatives. They received excellent advice, information and guidance as they prepare to apply for summer employment or upcoming internship positions.”

The career week also featured a motivational speech by Olympic swim coach Bailey Weathers Wednesday, and a visit by Minister of Education Tara Rivers and Ministry Chief Officer Christen Suckoo to the Career Fair held on Thursday, Feb. 18, which featured over 30 employers from a range of sectors.

At the fair, Year 11 students were encouraged to present themselves prepared to network and discuss possibilities of internship opportunities during the summer holidays. Year 9 students who attended were encouraged to gather information and advice on the subjects required for particular career paths, as they finalise their options for CXC/IGCSE examinations.