Bermuda Post

Tuesday, Sep 29, 2020

Ministry of Public Works - Staff Accomplishments and Summer Interns

Update from Ministry of Public Works:
Good morning and thank you for coming.

As many of you know, I relish every opportunity to deliver good news - and today, I again get to do just that.

Joining me today is a group of outstanding young people, some of whom are summer interns and one who has worked with the Ministry for several years.

As part of the Government’s Summer Internship Programme, 4 students worked over the summer in the Ministry. Through this opportunity, the government assists students with reaching their full potential and allows them to showcase their talent.

Also among this group is Ricardo Graham-Ward, Trainee Civil Engineer with the Department of Works and Engineering.

Ricardo began his career with The Government as a summer student in 2010. Upon graduating from university, he joined government full time in November 2015. Over his time with the government, Ricardo has worked either as an engineer or project manager on:

The Swing Bridge rehabilitation;
Cross Island development;
Bermuda Airport Redevelopment;
Swing Bridge and Longbird Bridge replacement structures; and
The PGA Bermuda Championship.
Of note, Ricardo spent over a year in the UK on secondment to Ramboll UK - with international Bridge designers for the Swing and Longbird Bridges. His involvement was not only a great opportunity for professional growth, but was of tremendous valueto the country as his local input and expertise helping design bridges that will be suitable and long lasting for our unique environment.

For the PGA Championship Ricardo was also instrumental in managing and coordinating several critical development projects that ensured the event was a success. These included refurbishment of the rockaway ferry terminal, erection of the grandstands and program management of all activities for the public works portion of the event.

As a crowning achievement, just a few days ago this month, Ricardo passed his Institution of Civil Engineers Professional Review Examination and became a full member of the Institution and a Chartered Civil Engineer.
This accomplishment is something Ricardo and his family should be very proud of. Not only has he demonstrated his competence and capabilities through his work, but he is now recognized internationally as a professional in his chosen field of expertise.

I’m certain Ricardo will agree with me that many people in the Ministry helped him along the way, but none more so than the former Chief Engineer, Yves (Bob) Lortie and the current Chief Kirk Outerbridge. This has been a team effort and I congratulate Ricardo on his success thus far and I look forward with great anticipation to see what he will accomplish next.

And now to the summer interns working with the Ministry - Hezekiah Rampersad, Marcal Wilkinson, Sekai Wainwright-Basden and Ayana Bean – in that order.

Mr. Hezekiah Rampersad graduated from the Bermuda College Technical Program in 2017 and entered the revived Government Power Engineering Trainee Program in 2019. Having been accepted into Cambrian College Applied Arts & Technology program, Hezekiah demonstrated his natural leadership abilities by getting elected Class President of his Cambrian College Power Engineering Program.

Hezekiah has grown from strength to strength and continues to be a shining beacon and role model for others to look up to. In his first year of study, Hezekiah achieved an amazing 4.0 GPA in his academic studies along with exemplary feedback from his Cambrian College teachers. Hezekiah has also completed his 4A examination and continues to study for the completion of his 4th class license which was interrupted by COVID-19.

Mr. Marcal Wilkinson.

Marcal also graduated from the Bermuda College Technical Program in 2017 and entered the revived Government Power Engineering Trainee Program in 2019. Having been accepted into Cambrian College Applied Arts & Technology program, Marcal has set his sights on excelling in academics and on the job training.

Marcal has always been a focused young man willing to sacrifice for his long term goals.

He has shown tremendous initiative with his professional and personal development, even taking time to volunteer at the Tynes Bay Facility where his commitment was rewarded with a paid summer intern position.

Having arrived in Canada to start his studies Marcal experienced a major health scare that required a month’s hospitalization and recuperation. He did not let this deter him and managed to complete the year with a GPA of 3.88. Marcal has also successfully passed his 4A exam and is currently fulfilling his required on the job training. Marcal’s perseverance to achieve is remarkable and should be commended.

I must add that many of their work colleagues have given both Marcal and Hezekiah high praise for their sense of initiative and willingness to go above and beyond in every regard. We are very proud of these two young men and as I expressed in the Press Conference last year, we have the utmost confidence in them.

Next up is Sekai Wainwright-Basden

Sekai was originally selected to pursue Power Engineering in 2019, however, he was currently on track for the completion of his Associate Degree in Fleet Management at the New England Institute of Technology where he graduated with a 3.8 GPA.

It should also be mentioned that Sekai is also a graduate of the Bermuda College Technical Program, having been classmates of both Hezekiah and Marcal. Sekai is a very focused individual and the committee supported his endeavors as it would only lead to a better-trained candidate for our Power Engineering Program.

Sekai is no stranger to the people of Bermuda as his technical accolades have been featured over the years. Sekai has a background in diesel mechanics acquired through training at BELCO and expressed a keen interest in Power Plant Operations. In collaboration with BELCO, the government introduced Sekai to the field of Power Engineering and he has been passionate about joining our program since.

Sekai is a self-driven trainee who has continued to lift our organization with his mechanical attributes and willingness to learn. We are looking forward to Sekai starting his journey towards Power Engineering in September and we are honored to support him.

And finally Ayana Bean

Ayana graduated from the Bermuda College in 2016 with an Associate of Arts degree. Her journey into the technical world has been unique.

Having been a standout candidate, Ayana did not have the traditional background of other candidates, however, she showed the tenacity to do what was necessary. Having an initial shortfall in the science pre-requisites, at the advice of the program managers, Ayana agreed to enroll again at the Bermuda College to complete the pre-requisites for Cambrian College and upon successful completion was accepted into the school.

It is important to mention that Ayana has created history as the first female Power Engineering Trainee to enter the Government Program since its inception over 10 years ago. We are especially proud as we are keen to ensure that young women understand that they too have a place in the male-dominated field of Technical studies and careers.

The success of these four students can almost singularly attributed to the incredible support and drive of the Mr. Kenneth Bartram current acting Labour Relations Officer and TBWTE Plant Manager, Mr. Nasir Wade. Their personal commitment to the success of these 4 students has been extraordinary. Gentlemen, your determination to see them all succeed is made even sweeter by their determination, commitment and success – thank you.

I made a statement a few weeks ago that we were building an army of young people who are bright, with clear vision and determined to make a success of their chosen career and likewise we who are in a position to help make that happen - are equally determined to demonstrate to them that we will make a way for them in the country of their birth.

We highlight these young people to acknowledge their success thus far and to encourage others that they too can have similar success and we stand ready to help them achieve their goals too.

I must say that all 5 of you are an extraordinary group of young men and a woman. We in the Ministry join your families in congratulating you for what you have accomplished thus far in your short lives.

I now invite Ricardo followed by the summer interns the opportunity to come and share a few words about their journey thus far.
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