Twenty-two (22) British Virgin Islands’ professionals completed the first of its kind Fintech Training Programme and are now certified to help develop the BVI’s FinTech ecosystem.
The graduates are Henry Creque, Lorna Smith, Deshawn Douglas, Dawn Alexander-Joseph, Mikal Dawson, Courtney Jones, Ronald Emanuel, Trevaughn Smith, Elise Donovan, Margaret Jones, Chad Maduro, Kimberly Copaceanu, Ouida Nisbett-Turnbull, Floris Lettsome-Lewis, Beverly George, Calwyn Parkins, Samantha Sayers, Shanica Smith, Shaquille Byron, Helen Marquis, Carla Hodge, and Michelle Smith.
Premier and Minister of Finance of the British Virgin Islands, Dr. the Honourable Natalio D. Wheatley congratulated graduates and affirmed his support of the programme, highlighting the Government of the Virgin Islands’ endorsement of the $60,000 grant as a means to prioritise public service transformation and to show commitment towards digitalising the government’s processes and systems to increase efficiency, effectiveness and service delivery.
He said, “We also believe that the development of the digital economy provides for our business community, employment opportunities and revenue for the government; and this investment in tech is a great compliment to our existing pillars of financial services and tourism, that may become a significant pillar if we properly position ourselves. Having a cadre of fintech professionals is key in meeting this aspiration.”
Premier Wheatley also thanked all those that made planned and executed the programme such as BVI Finance CEO, Elise Donovan; former Director for HLSCC’s Robert Mathavious Institute (RMI) for Financial Services, Dr. Derry Hodge; and Founding Director of the National University of Singapore Fintech Lab, Keith B. Carter and other instructors from academia and business, the graduates and professionals of the RMI for Financial Services that assisted in any way.
Professor Keith B. Carter highlighted that global competition within the fintech ecosystem is strong but that the BVI project presentations were among the best in the capstone projects he had facilitated. He went on to encourage those participants to keep it going and use the fintech ecosystem to their advantage.
President of the H. Lavity Stoutt Community College, Dr. Richard Georges stated that he was extremely impressed with the level of expertise in the showcase by the graduates and commended all those that made the programme possible. He said that one of the blessings of being in a small place is the ability to transform it at a speed and a scale that is impossible in larger places.
“While we may be in a microstate, I encourage you all to continue to think big and outside the box and to think of the ways in which what you are doing with this course can not only create commercial ventures but a better quality of life for all Virgin Islanders and residents,” said Dr. Georges.
Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Education, Dr. Marcia Potter congratulated the graduates on behalf of the Minister of Education Honourable Sharie De Castro saying that it was a pleasure seeing the projects being brought to fruition and the Ministry of Education was delighted in aiding the first cohort through and will continue to support future programmes of its kind.
BVI Finance CEO Elise Donovan who was an organiser and course participant expressed gratitude to Professor Carter for working alongside herself and Dr. Hodge with BVI Finance and the RMI to conceptualise the Fintech Training Programme and the teams for completing the course.
Former Director of the HLSCC’s RMI for Financial Services, Dr. Derry A. Hodge, also congratulated the cohort for completing the course and hoped for the continuation of the programme.
The Fintech Training Programme began in March 2022 where students completed a coursework phase that featured four intensive courses on the fundamentals of FinTech and business-related programme concepts, and a project phase that involved the practical implementation in a local partnering firm.
The four capstone groups were as follows: FSC Fintech Advisory Group which focused on Robotic Process Automation; Money Buzz which focused on Automation in Banking; HLB Works Task Management Suite which focused on Task Management Application; and Transport Me BVI which focused on Automation in DMV services.
Participants who completed the Fintech Training Programme were then able to receive their certification of completion from the NUS School of Computing. A fully BVI organised and run programme will be set up for 2023.
The Fintech Training Programme is a collaborative project amongst the HLSCC’s Robert Mathavious Institute for Financial Services; BVI Finance; and the Government of the Virgin Islands through the Ministry of Education, Culture , Youth Affairs and Sports Fisheries and Agriculture.
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