The Graydon Sealy Secondary School is equipping students with skills to navigate the demanding world of work through its ongoing internship programme.
With special focus on 21st-century skills, returning fifth form students continue to gain real-world experience by interning at various businesses around the island. The school today held a meeting with its business partners, reflecting on its School to Work Programme arm of the internship, which is now in its third year.
The principal of Graydon Sealy Secondary Beverly Bancroft made the internship mandatory as she believes that it is of the utmost importance in the curriculum. Fifth form students who return for another year to gain additional certification also leave with valuable work experience.
The principal said, “Graydon Sealy School still has a vision of how and where we want our students to grow and to develop. We have, therefore, after very careful assessment of our students needs diversified our curriculum so that it is more suited for 21st-century skills.”
The school also added a Caribbean Vocational Qualification (CVQ) arm of the internship where students are attached to businesses to build their CVQ portfolio. This academic year, the CAPE Unit One subjects Tourism Management, Entrepreneurship, and Communication Studies were added to the curriculum.
She lauded the business partners who gave their time and effort to assist the interns and by extension, the school, over the last three years.
Graydon Sealy alumnus and Owner of Terasu Inc. Michael Hinds gave the feature address showing the journey of his life since gaining an internship opportunity at the school. At the age of 14, he became an intern in the kitchen of the then Grand Barbados Beach Resort, which was a stepping stone that propelled him into the 21st century working world.
Hinds implored the government and private sector to work together to provide internships to young people that could help the country achieve its goals. “Many places offer the sea, sand and a smile, these things are commonplace. What will separate us is how we deliver them and other products with the competence which exceeds our visitors’ expectations,” he said.
“In my view, the path to our prosperity lies with the quality of what we produce through our trained, educated and committed human capital operating at a real-world pace,” he explained.
He also urged other schools to offer programmes within their curriculum that cater to work skills alongside academics that will aid in producing competent employees and increase productivity.