Avasant Foundation has concluded its first training cohort of 60 candidates benefitting from the Digital Skills Training Program in Guyana. The program designed by the Avasant Foundation, concentrates on the development of transversal, entrepreneurial and technology skills required for the future of work. It equips youth aged 18-26 with the relevant skills to succeed in the digital economy. Modules of training were presented on the topics of professional skills, communications, leadership skills and social behavior, Office 365, Project Management, UX Design, Mobile Application, Web Design and Development, Master Data Management, Entrepreneurship and more. The Digital Skills Training Program was made possible in Guyana in partnership with The University of Guyana and supported with funding from the Inter-American Development Bank Lab.
Avasant Foundation Executive Director, Chitra Rajeshwari hosted the graduation ceremony virtually to celebrate the accomplishments of candidates. In attendance were many supporters of the program including representatives from the IDB and Avasant Consulting LLC. Key program collaborators such as Vice Chancellor Professor Paloma Mohamed of the University of Guyana and several lecturers were also present. Inspirational addresses were delivered by Kevin S. Parikh, Global CEO of Avasant and Chairman of the Avasant Foundation and Vashtie Dookiesingh, Senior Specialist for the Inter-American Development Bank Lab.
In his opening keynote, Mr.Parikh congratulated the graduates for their commitment and perseverance through the challenges of the training program and COVID-19 pandemic. Mr.Parikh discussed the key skills and talent requirements for the future workforce highlighting that digitalization is enabling more youths with job opportunities and career paths they did not have before. A proponent of technology freeing us from the mundane and giving us more time to innovate and carry out more thoughtful work, Mr.Parikh challenged the graduates to unleash the full power of their imagination. He posits that the Digital Age has unlocked a new era for creativity and innovation and encourages the graduates to leverage the digital skills and be fully imaginative.
Senior specialist at the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) Vashtie Dookiesingh also echoed similar sentiments as she asserted that the development of an innovation and entrepreneurial mindset will be crucial to survival in an increasingly technologized and globalized world. Ms Dookiesingh noted that Guyana is experiencing tremendous economic growth and acceleration in the adoption of technology. However, for organizations to fully benefit from technology, they must support the development of a workforce with digital skills.
Vice Chancellor Professor Paloma Mohamed of the University of Guyana pledged continued support for the delivery of the Digital Skills Training Program in Guyana. Prof. Mohamed remarked that the pandemic has made more evident the digital skills gap and need for a digitally proficient workforce. The impact of skills training can be profound in helping individuals stay competitive and assisting young people to pivot into new careers. Connecting youth with opportunities to learn creates a pathway into jobs with more opportunity.
Avasant Foundation Executive Director, Chitra Rajeshwari noted to graduates, “You are the pioneers for Avasant Foundation’s fully digital online training model which delivers a combination of skills necessary for youth empowerment and workforce transformation. With the achieved levels of digital skills mastery commences a transformative journey not only for you the graduates but for all of Guyana and the region.”
The event concluded successfully with graduates being awarded their certificates and being invited to be ambassadors for the Avasant Digital Skills Training Program which continues in Guyana.