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CTI OPEN HOUSE Continued from pg. 4 trade and real skills that are marketable.” Sentiments of new beginnings were also echoed by Errol McPhee, chief executive officer of CTI, and a long-time educator. “For many, being a part of CTI is a second chance,” he explained. “Some had not completed high school or had the opportunity to improve educationally or as individuals. With our learn and earn program, we target the 50% to 70% of secondary school leavers who are most likely unemployable and assist them by providing a vocation that will help them earn a living.” Currently, CTI’s major program is the learn and earn program that is unique to vocational education in The Bahamas. Students attend courses for 2 days per week and work in their trade while earning a stipend for the remaining 4 days. CTI states that it is an effective approach that improves educational attainment and promotes a locally employed workforce. The certificate of achievement for the learn and earn program includes 10 steps that build character and improves lives. They are: demonstrably upgrading in literacy and numeracy, developing a technical skill that would afford entry into field of study, developing a life plan and budget, establishing a bank account and a savings goal, obtaining standard forms of identification (E.g. voter’s card and a passport), achieving computer literacy, completing CPR/first aid training, BahamaHost training and completing 50 volunteer hours. Support from The South Eleutheran Mission with an afterschool literacy and numeracy intervention program aids students for their literacy and numeracy requirement. Assistant program coordinator, Ade Pinder explained, “Twentyfive percent of the students were operating at a reading level below their grade. Through our education literacy and numeracy intervention program, we worked together in an afterschool program and there has been a 77% success rate.” So far, an average of 81% of the trainees have passed their academic courses with an average grade of 75%. All students have created budgets compared to none when they first enrolled. Many have also set up bank accounts with the One Eleuthera Cooperative Credit Union, another organization working to positively change some of the negative trends of this small island state. Other programs at CTI include workshops and certificate courses for CTI’s affiliates, local nonprofits and the public. The Retreat that is CTI’s hotel and Eleuthera Community Farms (ECF) is an operation that offers education and a commerce aspect where food is grown for learning and economic purposes. Plans for a canning factory will complement the use of crops grown on the farm. Ingraham and McPhee believe that CTI is a driver of innovation and a creator of economic opportunities and social entrepreneurship for a more viable economy in Eleuthera. They seek to expand offerings and at present are reviewing programs in entrepreneurship, hospitality, nonprofit management, and administration and construction, with Institutions like University of Delaware, Bahamas Technical and Vocational Institute, Drury University and Kent University. For more information, visit www.oneeleuthera. org/CTI/projects or call 242-334-2703.
In The Photos: CTI Staff, Students and Donors. The attendees all mingled during the open house to showcase and gain appreciation for the accomplishments of the past year.
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