The ABIC Education Awards programme now in its 40th year is one of the largest and most broadly supported scholarship programmes in Bermuda, highlighting commitment of the International Business sector to Bermudian students. The awards are supported by more than 50 ABIC member companies and a committee of approximately 20 volunteers from donor companies and colleagues in the business and the academic community looking to encourage young Bermudians to join the sector.
In the past decade the programme has given more than $5 million to approximately 195 Bermudian students pursuing full undergraduate or postgraduate degrees at accredited four-year colleges or universities abroad. Applications are invited from students in both the government and private sector schools, as well as from students already enrolled in degree programmes.
The scholarship awards are made based on a combination of the applicant’s financial need, academic ability and field of study. Other criteria includes the applicant’s specific career focus, awareness of the role of international business in Bermuda, and the level of involvement in and commitment to the community.
Presently the undergraduate award to each recipient is $15,000 per year for a two-year period, while the post graduate award is valued at $20,000 for one year. Some 50 to 60 applications are received from students annually. For the past few years PwC has provided the shortlisted students with an interview training session prior to their interviews, and between 14 and 20 students are awarded each year.
For the 40th anniversary of ABICEA the alumni created an annual Alumni Award intended to support mature individuals who are interested in upgrading their skill sets to retrain for careers in IB, or for those who have plans to pursue an undergraduate degree leading to a career in IB.
Three additional grants are announced at the awards luncheon. The Michelle Outerbridge Memorial Award is valued at $5,000 and sponsored by the ABIC membership. Michelle was a 2000 scholarship recipient and is remembered for her enthusiasm for life, academic ability and all round vitality which left a lasting impression an all that met her.
The Stephen Edwards Memorial Award is valued at $5,000 and sponsored by Lombard Odier Trust (Bermuda) Ltd. Stephan was a 2014 scholar and is remembered as a passionate and athletically gifted young man who was a role model to young and old, local and abroad in the sport of rugby.
The Shernelle Outerbridge Memorial Award is sponsored by Zurich in the amount of $15,000. Mrs Outerbridge, the late CEO of Zurich Investment Services Limited, was a recipient of a 1984 ABIC award. This special memorial award is a fitting tribute to her character and achievements and specifically her contribution to business in Bermuda.
Zantae Dill, a legal studies student at the University of the West of England, is the 2017 recipient of The Stephen Edwards Memorial Award and she had this to say: “I am beyond grateful to be a recipient of one of the 2017 ABIC Education Awards and the recipient of the 2017 Stephen Edwards Memorial Award.
“Both awards have given me the opportunity to continue to pursue my dream of a career in Law. I am honoured to be recognised as fitting for the criteria for the Stephen Edwards Memorial Award, and have seen this award as an inspiration to continue to work hard and strive towards my goals.
“ABIC is a great foundation whose primary interest is setting up pathways to success for its recipients. They have given me the opportunity to be able to network and be in contact with businesses and individuals who will help me to reach my final career destination. I can’t express enough how much ABIC along with Lombard Odier have aided me in my further education. I do encourage those who have an interest in the international business sector to apply for the ABIC Education Awards in hopes of fulfilling your dreams as well. Believe in your goals and work hard until you reach them!”
The 2018 ABIC Education Awards deadline is April 6 and students can apply on www.bermudascholarships.com. All questions about the ABIC Education Awards programme can be directed to Greta Peters at 293-4600 or [email protected]
This article was featured in the 2017, Scholarship Directory, now RG Scholarships.