ABIC To Launch A New Education Award

November 18, 2016

The Association of Bermuda International Companies [ABIC] has launched a new education award aimed at assisting locals, who are interested in upgrading their skillsets, to pursue new educational and career goals.

Speaking at ABIC’s 13th Annual General Meeting, Chairman Patrick Tannock said while there is much to celebrate in terms of Bermuda’s position as a leading business jurisdiction, there is still work to be done in the midst of economic and social challenges.

“Next year will mark the 40th anniversary of the ABIC Education Awards [“ABICEA”],” Mr. Tannock said. “As part of our celebration of the anniversary, we have invited ABICEA alumni to contribute to this special award that will help mature individuals, who are interested in upgrading their skillsets so that they remain relevant in an ever evolving, highly competitive global marketplace, to pursue new educational and career goals.

“Through the ABICEA Give Back Campaign we plan to raise funds directly based on financial donations from our alumni, many of whom have excelled in their professions and have made significant contributions to the island’s business sector.”

Noting that ABIC’s mission is to promote a sound business environment in Bermuda for International Business and the Bermuda community and to advocate for balanced government policies that maintain Bermuda as a well-respected domicile of choice, Mr. Tannock said ABIC is encouraged by the spirit of collaboration between the ruling and opposition political parties on important matters such as social stability.

He pointed out that ABIC had also made significant strides during the year.

“We are making progress in raising the awareness of the value of International Business and improving the dialogue,” Mr. Tannock said. “This includes:

  • Executing on the ABIC Communication Plan for 2016 which involves meetings with key stakeholders such as political parties, unions and public schools. We meet regularly with the leadership of both political parties to ensure there is an understanding of the needs of our sector.
  • Participating in Government’s External Affairs Strategic Steering Committee. The committee has brought together representatives from the Finance Ministry, Bermuda Monetary Authority, Bermuda Business Development Agency [“BDA”], Association of Bermuda Insurers and Reinsurers [“ABIR”] and ABIC to develop a shared agenda and collaboration on international regulatory and tax initiatives.
  • Continuing to partner with the BDA in the delivery of the Everybody’s Business Campaign. The campaign strategy continues to focus on public awareness of the value proposition of International Business, taking our message to a wider audience and sharing information and messages via social media, including a dynamic video and animated graphic. The campaign continues to leverage the well-received live radio talk-show panel discussions hosted by Cyril Whitter of the ABIC Executive and we have been working with Chris Famous to produce podcasts on the topics covered in our radio programs. The campaign features Bermudians in International Business and the Everybody’s Business team sharing the message of why International Business is so important to each of us.”

Mr. Tannock said ABIC also continues to invest in education. This includes this past year:

  • Meeting with curriculum officers and teachers from the public middle schools to develop an economics curriculum, particularly courses whereby students learn about the Bermuda economy, the value of International Business and the challenges and the opportunities in the International Business sector. The curriculum is expected to be rolled out in the New Year.
  • Ensuring that Bermuda students are aware of the careers in International Business. ABIC and a panel of young professionals recently met with S3 and S4 students at CedarBridge Academy and Berkeley Institute to talk about career choices, challenges along the way and the importance of networking, mentoring and perseverance. They plan to meet with S1 and S2 students at both schools in the New Year.
  • Supporting the Virtual Enterprises International [“VEI”] program at Berkeley. VEI is a hands-on, interactive teaching and learning tool that introduces students to the world of business across a multi-disciplinary agenda. Berkeley students in the VEI program are learning how a business works by creating a virtual product and selling services to other student groups in schools around the world. They have an opportunity to meet senior business leaders in Bermuda and will graduate from Berkeley and VEI with an understanding of sales, marketing, finance, administration, presentation and leadership skills. VEI will be offered at CedarBridge next year.
  • Through the ABICEA, ABIC is supporting 21 students with scholarships this year. Over the past 10 years, the ABICEA has supported more than 570 students, and thanks to the investments of ABIC members, ABICEA donations have totaled more than $5 million.

Mr. Tannock thanked Christian Dunleavy, Chair of the Education Awards, and Samantha Froud, Chair the Awards Scholarship Committee, for their excellent work throughout the year.

He said in 2017 ABIC plans to continue:

  • Efforts to increase the awareness of the value proposition of International Business
  • To build on efforts with government, the opposition and unions
  • To strike a balance between infusion and retention of high quality intellectual capital and commitment to developing local talent to ensure a win/win that will drive innovation and help Bermuda keep its competitive advantage.

He concluded: “I would like to thank the members of the ABIC Board and every ABIC member for making 2016 a successful year. While we can and should be proud of our achievements, we cannot afford to rest on our laurels and take these successes for granted.

“After all, let’s not forget that the challenges of Bermuda Business to remain relevant in the global market are relentless and that economic stability and social stability go hand in hand. And while our value proposition as a top business jurisdiction remains strong, our social fabric is fragile.

“So we need to continue to keep our fingers on the pulse of our Bermuda community and pursue every opportunity to collaborate with all stakeholders to ensure that Bermuda remains the business domicile of choice.”

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