The 14th annual Summer Internship Training Program hosted by the Department of Youth and Sports on Nevis officially closed Aug. 11 after 52 school leavers took part and 51 were placed on job sites.
On Wednesday, the Observer spoke with the director of the department, Zahnela Claxton, who noted that the program targets school leavers in both fifth form and sixth form college. The program begins shortly after school closes in July and participants attended a number of workshops.
The participants are trained in all aspects of finding a job, from filling out an application to the interview process. The participants are then placed on different jobs sites in what Claxton calls a safe environment.
“The participants were placed on their interest and opportunity,” she said. “In the beginning, we gave them a form to fill out with three areas of interest.”
Participants were placed at media houses, banks, insurances companies and number of other places. All type of fields of work were available.
“Not everyone wants to become a doctor or lawyer or a teacher,” she said, “so we made sure we had different fields of employments.”
She said that the job attachment last for five weeks and a number of employers agreed to take some of the participants for the allotted time. Participants were also paid $100 per week by the department of Youth and Sports and matched $100 by the employer.
“Some of the employers have already informed of their intentions to take back some of them during the Christmas vacation and some have also been hired,” she said.
In addition to the program, participants are asked to complete a number of hours of volunteer service to the community of Nevis and are given a year to complete it. After the program ended, Claxton noted the department will act as support system to the participants.
“We will keep a track of them, help them with their resume, make sure they are doing well,” she said.
The closing ceremony was held Thursday at the Nevis Performing Arts Center NEPAC.