Saturday, August 4, 2018

High Schoolers Dive into Technology at BTVI

Students at work discovering the wonders of technology. Photos: Shantique Longley

Young Kwsaind Turnquest made one of the best decisions when he decided to sacrifice his summer vacation to participate in the Information and Communication Technology Summer Youth Program at The Bahamas Technical and Vocational Institute (BTVI).

Kwsaind has always been a knowledge hungry student, and the ICT program is just one of those things that satisfy his appetite to learn.

“I’m excited to continue in this program because it is going to help me secure my future. It’s a part of achieving my career goal to become a Computer Engineer and Music Producer,” said the fifteen year old.

For this video game player, the most exciting part of the program so far has been learning how to make programs and video games. He most recently learned how to make his own music in the program and cannot wait to share his experience with family.

Fellow participant, Bria Hanna, has always been interested in technology and is excited that she has finally gotten the opportunity to learn more about it.

“I was hoping that I would be able to establish my future career while I’m still young and when I learned about this program I was like, ‘Wow, that’s it.’ What really excites me about the program is the hands-on approach. We’re not just sitting down watching videos; we’re actually getting to do things,” said the 14-year-old.

Bria has already begun sharing her experiences with her friends and is excited to go deeper into programming. Her goal is to become a lawyer, focusing on cybercrime cases.

Both participants plan to continue into one of BTVI’s associate of applied science degrees in the information technology field after high school – which they will be able to complete within a year, thanks to the ICT program.

Program Instructor, André Bethel helps two students.

The participants will conclude the face-to-face learning portion of the program on August 3, and continue into online learning for four weeks.

BTVI’s Chair of Information Technology, Anthony Ramtulla said earlier, “With this program, the seed will be planted for these young people to become the leading experts in Software Engineering, Network Engineering and Information Technology Management in the nation.”

Agreeing with him is BTVI’s Associate Vice President of the Northern Campus, Veronica Collie, who believes the program commenced at the right time.

“As Grand Bahama becomes a technical hub, we want the students leaving high school to be able to keep up with the changes. The ICT program is taking them in the right direction and preparing these young people for the job market when they graduate high school,” said Ms. Collie.

The students will sit their first international certification exam in August.

Kwsaind Turnquest (right) assisting his classmate with an assignment.

The three-year summer program – launched in partnership with the Ministry of Education and the Office of the Prime Minister – trains upcoming 10th graders in the modules of I.T. Fundamentals, Linux Unhatched, Introduction to Cyber Security, Python, JavaScript, professional performances and ethics.

There are 126 students presently enrolled in the program in New Providence. It is also being offered at BTVI’s Grand Bahama campus with 54 students.