Katalyxt 2017-18 Youth Innovators’ Competition TAKES FLIGHT

Moderator Cheryll Stewart

THE LAUNCH of Katalyxt 2017-18 Youth Innovators’ Competition (YIC)took place at the José Marti Technical High School on Thursday, November 2, followed by a sensitisation session on November 16. There was excitement when several schools gathered to be stimulated by thought-provoking challenges delivered by the sponsors, industry stakeholders, and organisers of the Katalyxt YIC programme.

The theme of this year’s competition is ‘Planting the Seed of Entrepreneurship in Fertile Soil’. The launch kicked off with moderator Cheryll Stewart welcoming all to the seventh staging of the Youth Innovators’ Competition, and acknowledging the main sponsors and industry stakeholders: Development Bank of Jamaica (DBJ) Limited, Jamaica
National (JN), EXIM Bank Jamaica, Tru-Juice and Jamaica Producers. Katalyxt team leader Winsome Minott welcomed all to the launch and shared the team’s continuous commitment to providing tools, information, training and inspiration to students in high schools to become innovators and job creators.

Minott stressed the importance of being resilient in the face of adversity. “Entrepreneurs always face problems; however, it is our attitude and our ability to persevere that allows one to become successful,” she reminded the audience before ending her message on a high note by having the students repeat the YIC mantra: “We are innovators, we are job creators, we are the best of the best!”

Marlon Williams, senior education officer, represented Dr Grace McLean’s office at the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information. He publicly announced the ministry’s endorsement of the YIC and encouraged the students to make the best of the opportunities provided and to compete at the highest standard.

Tyrone Wilson, president and chief executive officer of eMedia Interactive, was the guest speaker. He shared his entrepreneurial journey and gave the budding entrepreneurs useful tips on how to become successful. Despite starting 

out as a youth from the inner city, he had big dreams to be a successful entrepreneur. His passion led to the preparation of his detailed and well-thought-out business plan. He explained that he introduced his idea to Chris Williams, chief executive officer of Proven Wealth Management Limited, at a meeting of the Jamaica College Old Boys’ Association, and there he found a willing partner. Wilson’s case
confirms that when passion and preparation meet opportunity, there can be success. Other special guests, sponsors and industry stakeholders who attended the event were Kereen Reid (Ministry of Education; Region 6); Karlene Segree (Ministry of Education); Carl Carram (eMedia Interactive/ iCreate).

The schools represented at the launch included:

  • Ardenne High School
  • Bridgeport High School
  • Bustamante High School
  • Calabar High School
  • Camperdown High School
  • Edith Dalton James High School
  • Jamaica College
  • José Marti Technical High School
  • Kingston College
  • Kingston High School
  • Kingston Technical High School
  • Lennon High School
  • McGrath High School
  • Mona High School
  • Nain High School
  • Penwood High School
  • Roger Clarke High School
  • Tarrant High School
  • Vere Technical High School
  • Waterford High School
  • Wolmer’s Trust High School for Boys
  • Yallahs High School


The sensitisation workshop of Katalyxt 2017-18 YIC took place at Medallion Hall on Thursday, November 16. Karene Reid, teacher at The Queen’s School, opened the session with a prayer. The team leader stressed the need to build on a solid foundation. Part of that foundation will be the training that students receive during the 2017-18 YIC year. Fundamental keywords and practices shared with the students,
which highlighted skills they will need to employ in order to become successful entrepreneurs included vision, perseverance, focus. The youth innovators were introduced to Karl Hendrickson’s success story.
They were also made aware of the dangers of becoming complacent in the field of business. These stories set the pace for the morning. The students then huddled into their groups for the break-out sessions in
which they were challenged to do the following: have a clear entrepreneurial vision, identify problems and solutions, and prepare a business plan as a road map. The sensitisation workshop ended with the teams well armed with the information needed and attitudes necessary for success.

Next Stop: Sensitisation workshop/training for St James, Westmoreland, and St Elizabeth.

Asics Onitsuka Tiger

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