501 Youth Empowered with Digital and Life Skills by The Trust for the Americas’ JET Project

JET Project Graduation Cohort 3

Kingston, Jamaica – June 30, 2024 – As the digital landscape evolves, the gap between current skill sets and market demands poses challenges for many young people. In this context, The Trust for the Americas, through its JET Project, addresses this issue by equipping Jamaican youth with digital, entrepreneurial, and life skills to catalyze their growth in the digital economy. Jamaica's future became brighter in this opportunity as 501 young Jamaicans celebrated their graduation from JET. 

The graduation ceremony, held at the University College of the Caribbean (UCC) Campus, was a vibrant affair attended by proud family members, community stakeholders, and distinguished guests. The atmosphere was charged with excitement and hope as graduates received their certificates, symbolizing not just the completion of the program but the beginning of new professional opportunities. 

At the graduation ceremony, Quimey Del Rio, Senior Program Officer of The Trust for the Americas, praised the graduates for their dedication and hard work. “At the Trust, we are immensely proud of our graduates for their dedication and commitment throughout this stage of their journey. We are confident that the skills and knowledge attained throughout their preparation will be instrumental as they move on to the next one. We look forward to witnessing the fruits of their efforts as they move onto the later stages in their professional development.” 

One of the graduates, Shalona Watson, shared their journey, "The JET Program has significantly impacted my life, providing essential digital and soft skills that have boosted my freelance career. The hands-on training and supportive community fostered both professional and personal growth, enhancing my confidence and conflict-resolution abilities. I now feel more prepared and resilient to face any challenges." 

Among the 501 graduates, we are proud to highlight the following remarkable achievements: 

  • 129 graduates are actively freelancing, leveraging their new skills to build prosperous independent careers. 

  • 73 graduates are pursuing entrepreneurship paths, demonstrating innovation and a drive to create their business ventures. 

  • 91 graduates are pursuing internship opportunities to gain invaluable experience through collaboration with the Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF) and the Ministry of Labour and Social Security, positioning themselves for long-term career success. 

The success of this project underscores the importance of investing in youth development. Andrew Pairman, Deputy Chair of the N.C.B. Foundation highlighted the ongoing commitment to supporting Jamaican youth, "Empowering Jamaican youth through programmes like JET is not just a mission for N.C.B. Foundation; it's a testament to our commitment to building a better Jamaica. We are dedicated to ensuring that youths have access to digital education, enabling them to leverage software for online learning opportunities and enhancing their employability." 

These young professionals are ready to embark on their careers, poised to bring innovation and prosperity to Jamaica's socioeconomic landscape. The JET Project remains dedicated to supporting young individuals, providing them with essential digital and life skills, and helping them secure employment, freelance opportunities, or entrepreneurial ventures. 

As these 501 graduates' step into their futures, the ripple effect of their achievements is expected to be felt across their communities. The skills and confidence they have gained position them as future leaders and innovators, ready to contribute to Jamaica's growth and development.  

The JET Project is a collaborative effort spearheaded by The Trust for the Americas, with financial backing from the NCB Foundation, Microsoft, Citi Foundation, and the IDB LAB. The project also benefits from the leadership of the Jamaica Chamber of Commerce (JCC), the Private Sector Organization of Jamaica (PSOJ), the Caribbean School of Data (CSOD), and the Ministry of Education and Youth. This initiative underscores the power of public-private partnerships in effecting meaningful change. 

If you are a forward-thinking organization, join us by hiring our talented interns. Access a pool of skilled, motivated, and innovative individuals ready to impact your business. Register at: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/QC9XFTV



About The Trust for the Americas:      

The Trust for the Americas is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization affiliated with the Organization of American States (OAS). It was established in 1997 to promote public and private sector participation in social and economic development projects in Latin America and the Caribbean. Our initiatives, implemented through local partner organizations, seek to improve access to economic opportunities and foster innovation in vulnerable communities in the hemisphere. To this end, The Trust also promotes social inclusion and good governance. The Trust has offices in Washington, D.C., Colombia, and Canada.      

More information: www.thetrustfortheamericas.org       

About Democratizing Innovation in the Americas (DIA):    

DIA is a regional initiative of The Trust for the Americas that was launched to foster innovation and empower new generations through access to technology training, specialized curricula, collaboration spaces, mentorship, and financial resources for social and economic ventures.  

Press Contact
Lara Bersano Calot
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C. +1 202 460 9573