INSIGHT: BTVI remains a pillar on Grand Bahama

Grand Bahamians are a resilient people. The same applies for the Bahamas Technical and Vocational Institute (BTVI). Despite destruction during Hurricane Dorian in 2019, the Grand Bahama branch remains the career training institution of choice on that island.

“Dorian didn’t stop us. Here in Grand Bahama, BTVI is really respected. What helps is that our students go out there and perform. We receive excellent feedback,” said associate vice president of the Northern Campus and Family Islands, Veronica Collie.

“The high quality and standards offered at BTVI are comparable to technical programmes worldwide. Our students who further their education abroad reiterate these sentiments,” she said.

Currently, 16 Grand Bahama Shipyard apprentices - who are also BTVI students - are in Liverpool, United Kingdom, to participate in a three-month training programme. It is taking place in conjunction with the Engineering College, where they will be exposed to marine mechanical works and pipe fitting.

Meantime, in keeping with the institution’s high standards, last September, a $1.6m contract was signed for campus renovations after a devastating blow by Dorian. Areas to be renovated and or upgraded include the entire administrative block and labs, including welding, carpentry and auto mechanics. A media technology lab and an auditorium will be added.

“The facilities needed renovation for some time; however, Dorian worsened their state. The facelift and upgraded offices, instructional labs, classrooms and technology will add to the community’s overall perspective of BTVI,” said Ms Collie.

BTVI remains a fixture on Grand Bahama since 1983, the days when it was known as the Industrial Training College (ITC). Over the past 40 years, its partnerships with industry have been strengthened to the benefit of students. Affiliations include, but are not limited to the Freeport Container Port, Grand Bahama Shipyard, Ministry of Youth, Ministry for Grand Bahama and Ministry of Education.

According to Ms Collie, the institution’s credibility has been solidified by its affiliations with these major industry partners.

“We continue to work with industry to gather the technical and vocational needs and address them as effectively as possible. BTVI is here to serve. Further, training is essential and organisations that allow our students to complete internships, some of the interns end up getting jobs at these entities. The record they set speaks for us,” said Ms Collie.


• Gain An Edge is a collaboration of Lyford Cay Foundations, the Bahamas Technical and Vocational Institute and the University of The Bahamas aimed at promoting a national dialogue on issues surrounding education. To share your thoughts, email gainanedge@tribunemedia.net.



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