The Alpha Institute has embarked on a recruitment drive to engage and provide skills training to at-risk youth of inner-city communities in Kingston, with the aim of empowering them to acquire marketable skills and become socially responsible citizens of Jamaica.
According to Charles Arumaiselvam, public relations director at the Alpha Institute, the main purpose of the recruitment drive is to register those students, boys 15-18 years who were unable to complete their secondary education.
“We want to offer them an opportunity in skills training as a way of furthering their education. The institute now has at-risk-youth registered in the various trade training programmes and it is wonderful to see how these inner-city community youth who were out of school are now seeing the opportunities for employment that seemed far from their reach,” Arumaiselvam said.
Beacon of light
The Alpha Institute, formerly Alpha Boys’ School was founded in 1880 and was born of the vision of Jamaican philanthropist, Jessie Ripoll, whose dream was to minister to the hopes and aspirations of Jamaicans who were less fortunate. As such, Alpha has long been a beacon of light and hope for the Jamaican society and has dedicated itself to the development of young people.
During the recruitment drive, the Alpha Institute wants to engage some 250 students who will have the opportunity to take two and three-year courses at the institute to include woodwork, barbering, landscaping, music performance and music technology. This year the institute will also be introducing greenhouse technology as part of the landscaping programme.
“All our programmes follow the HEART Trust/NTA curriculum and standards. The certification is provided by the Alpha Institute to those students who successfully complete the trade course. The trade training programme is geared toward making the students employable. For this reason we go beyond the teaching of the trade training programme and offer social and life skills including entrepreneurial courses,” Arumaiselvam said.
A STEPPING STONE
Arumaiselvam indicated that the students who successfully complete the programme can further their education at any HEART Trust/NTA institution offering higher levels of the same trade skills.
“We also make the recommendations, if necessary, for entry to HEART Trust/NTA institutions,” he said.
” The Alpha Institute is known for educating boys who have dreams of achieving success and even greatness but could not make that a reality because of financial difficulties and social disadvantages. It is the social thrust of the Alpha Institute that even underprivileged, socially disadvantaged boys can become contributing and productive individuals. Alpha’s 13 7 years of service to marginalised youth and their success stories are a witness to this social thrust,” he added.
Graduates of the Alpha Institute continue to create waves on the local and international landscape. Of the graduating class of 2017, three students are on their way to London to participate in a musical workshop, while others have gained employment with reputable companies on the island.
To register for the Alpha Institute, contact the school at 26 South Camp Road, telephone 930-5847, 928-1345 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Alpha Institute is a registered educational institution under the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information. Currently, the Alpha Institute has 130 boys registered in its skills training programmes.