There are many paths to a career in the financial services industry, and Virgin Islands firms are collaborating to offer youths a free opportunity to learn more about the sector.
Next month, Mourant BVI will offer its annual student summer programme for the second time, Managing Partner Eleanor Morgan announced during a press conference on June 9.
“Our programme hopes to help BVIslanders coming to the end of their high school careers to understand the opportunities available to them in financial services in the territory,” Ms. Morgan said.
The two-week programme — which is open to ages 15 to 18 — will give participants an opportunity to visit offices in the industry, gaining a first-hand view of the variety of jobs available in financial services.
Last year’s initial run included 20 teens, and organisers hope to accommodate 35-40 this year.
Tyzel Peters, one of those first-year participants, also spoke at the press conference.
“It was an enjoyable experience because it took me out of my comfort zone,” Mr. Peters said.
He added that he was able to work on his presentation skills, and he encouraged his peers to seize the chance.
Mourant Facilities Supervisor Kadeem Hodge said the curriculum “allows the students an opportunity to learn and develop new verifiable skills.”
“This is designed to support the acquisition and development of their personal, professional and technical knowledge and associated skills to support a career in the BVI financial services industry,” he added.
Mr. Hodge also noted that the original application deadline has been extended to June 23, and that the session runs from July 10-21.
Ms. Morgan said organisers prioritised making the programme free so students from a diverse array of economic backgrounds can get access to resources about the industry.
“When we talk about diversity, often people think about diversity along the lines of race or gender or sexual orientation,” she said. “But also socioeconomic diversity is every bit as important.”
She added, “Making sure the course is available for everybody means hopefully the people who might not have previously thought of this as an industry where they might have opportunities will have a chance to see that it can be open to them.”
Mr. Hodge said more than a dozen VI industry partners have invited students to come during a day of off-site visits. The Attorney General’s Chambers, he added, is among them.
The programme is designed to introduce students to a variety of careers at law firms, trust companies, insolvency practices and accounting firms.
Mourant BVI is hosting the programme in partnership with the Robert Mathavious Institute for Financial Services at H. Lavity Stoutt Community College.
RMIFS Director Chidi Liburd said students will also get an overview of the industry in the VI and learn about the structure of professional firms that keep it running.
Transportation to the college and lunch will be provided.
Students from sister islands are invited to apply and will be accommodated, organisers said.