The Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) has launched its scholarship program, creating opportunities for the next generation. Six students are the recipients of the company’s $120,000 four-year scholarship program which will support tuition or any other educational expenses while pursuing undergraduate studies in their desired field.
“We are doing our part to ensure that the next generation of leaders have what they need to succeed,” said Sameer Bhatti, BTC’s CEO. “As a telecoms provider, we recognize that we have a duty to assist our community in many ways and, at BTC, we strongly believe in the importance of training and developing students and nurturing talent. We believe that the introduction scholarship program is a great way for us to begin our own countdown to the nation’s 50th birthday, and we believe that this is a great gift for our young students.”
The six BTC scholarship recipients, presently in their first year of study at various colleges, are Ashton Cartwright, a computer science and mechanical engineering major at Philander Smith College in Little Rock, Arkansas; Aaliyah Harrison-Brennen, a molecular biology major at The University of the West Indies, Mona; Calvinae Jolly, a biochemistry major at Springhill College in Mobile, Alabama; Vania Deal, an aerospace engineering major at Georgia Institute of Technology; Arthur Maycock, a psychology major at University of The Bahamas (UB); and Waydeja Rolle, a finance major at Voorhees University in South Carolina.
“Learning is the first pillar of our corporate social responsibility, and we believe in lifelong learning and education,” said Bhatti. “Let me say that it was not easy when it came to selecting the recipients. Applicants were expected to be well-rounded students immersed in extracurricular activities and with a cumulative GPA (grade point average) of 3.00 or higher from their respective high schools. They were also required to submit a statement of purpose. We also selected students, not only based in New Providence, but also the Family Islands – and to our six scholarship recipients, I’d like to say, ‘Congratulations.’”
BTC will track each scholarship recipient for the next four years and will also support them with summer internships. Students are required to maintain a 3.00 GPA for the duration of the scholarship program.
The launch of BTC’s scholarship program comes on the heels of several learning and training initiatives that were recently introduced to support the future development of youth.
Last August BTC, in conjunction with its parent company, Liberty Latin America (LLA), launched its “Graduate Program” to attract and develop young professional talent that will be ready to assume managerial roles upon finalization of the program. People hired as graduates are mentored and supported by senior leaders at BTC and are placed in a fast-paced rotation program to learn insights into core business areas. In return, BTC officials said they will build a bench of leaders to take on management roles, also positioning the company as the employer of choice in the telecoms market.
Following International Women’s Day, BTC, in partnership with LLA, also continued to demonstrate its leadership and its commitment to the community with the launch of the “Future Tech Stars” program. The all-expense paid, 20-week program included over 800 participants from the Caribbean and Latin America, with 17 girls graduating from The Bahamas. Students were immersed in digital and crypto literacy, web development, and programming in Python. They were also exposed to a mentorship program where they had the opportunity to learn more about the field of technology from key movers and shakers within LLA and Cable & Wireless Communications.
Over the years, according to BTC officials, they have also made countless contributions to the Gentleman’s Club scholarship program and the Bahamas Primary School Student of the Year program, with the view of supporting excellence and education. In previous years, BTC has also collaborated with UB, providing a $250,000 four-year scholarship program.
“In the coming years, it is our hope to strengthen our scholarship program with an increase in the amount awarded, simply because we are aware of how important education is to the success of our students, and to nation building as a whole,” said Bhatti.