Cabot Saint Lucia in partnership with the Sir Arthur Lewis Community College (SALCC) is awarding Hospitality Scholarships for students entering the new academic year. The scholarship is intended for students who are economically challenged but have demonstrated academic and behavioural capacity to succeed.
According to SALCC, this will increase the pool of students who can access training in tourism and hospitality, thereby creating a broader and richer talent pool in the industry in Saint Lucia. The scholarship will also provide internship opportunities where students can develop their skills and knowledge.
Cabot, earlier this year, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with SALCC’s Department of Hospitality and Sustainable Tourism. The MOU, which promises to be a long-term partnership, will start its journey through the awarding of scholarships to students for their two year programme.
“We have no intentions of going anywhere we’ve only just started with our relationship and our partnership with the college so it’s not just the scholarships but it’s how do we embed ourselves in what happens at the college that we really do make a difference and we don’t just give lip service to what we say we’re going to do; that we actually walk the talk,” Gale Jean-Baptiste, Cabot’s Vice President of Human Resources said at a ceremony celebrating the partnership.
Cabot’s Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Rita Hawkins indicated that the opportunity is a great one for students, noting that the tourism industry is “the industry that employs the most persons in Saint Lucia and if we get it right then we can compete on the world stage.”
“I hope that this will encourage more young people to get into the vocation because tourism is our mainstay,” she added.
Noting the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, Chairman of the Board of Governors at SALCC Cletus Springer thanked Cabot for its initiative which he described as a ray of hope.
“These are difficult times for many families (and) it will continue to be as the lagging effects of the pandemic continue to take hold. Inflation is going to rise even more; prices are going to increase, and many families will experience hardships trying to get their students in here. Any help that they can get is going to be a massive contribution to the social and economic development of the country,” Springer said.
“We thank you (Cabot) for the ray of hope that you are giving to our current students and also future students who walk through this college,” he added.
Through this initiative, Tanya Warner (Head at the Department of Sustainable Tourism and Hospitality at SALCC), said “we can reach people throughout the lengths and breadths of Saint Lucia who have the skill, talent, ability (and) academic acumen to be able to come to Sir Arthur Lewis and be able to get an education; to come to our unit in particular to be able to develop their skills, so that at the end of the day they can contribute in a very positive way to the industry by extension.”
Applicants are required to write a 400-500 word essay, explaining and supporting why the scholarship should be awarded to them.
The scholarship will cover the full tuition for successful candidates. It also includes a ‘Chef’s Package’ that will cover kits and uniforms, computer, and transportation allowance. Candidates, however, must maintain a minimum grade point average of 2.7 and participate in at least two Cabot Cares initiatives related to community service.