14 prep for Junior Minister of Tourism competition

Fourteen Junior Directors of Tourism from around the country are preparing to compete in the 16th Annual Junior Minister of Tourism Speech Competition Thursday.

The Junior Minister of Tourism programme was designed to promote awareness of the importance of tourism among high school students and to motivate Bahamian youth to pursue careers in the country’s number one industry.

The overarching goal of the program is to generate a sustainable talent pool of young professionals to service our tourism industry, according to tourism officials.

Samantha Cartwright, national coordinator of the event said, each year she sees new energy and she is reminded that the future is bright.

“Every year, we see new energy, enthusiasm and passion for country in the competitors,” she said.

“The country allows us to see the future of tourism and expose young people to the opportunities available in the sector and to let them know there’s a place for everyone in the industry. The tourism workforce and the future of tourism are secure with this generation of leaders.”

The 14 students were selected from Abaco, Acklins, Andros, Berry Islands, Bimini, Cat Island, Crooked Island, Eleuthera, Exuma, Grand Bahama, Long Island, New Providence and San Salvador in a three-phase competition.

While the initial phases of the competition consisted of interviews and speech preliminaries, the final phase is a highly-anticipated speech competition.

Each of the 14 finalists will be given three to five minutes to speak on the topic, “Sustainable Tourism: A Nation’s Plan After the Storm”.

In addition to the prepared topic, a “mystery” question will be presented at the competition and finalists will have one minute to give a response.

Winners will be chosen based on a60 per cent score from the speeches and 40 percent from the mystery topic.

The winner of this year’s competition will succeed St. Anne’s student Michael Wallace. Wallace took second-place in the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) Youth Congress.

The winner will receive the Patrick S. Bain Scholarship (tenable at the University of The Bahamas), an entry in CTO Youth Congress, a $500.00 cash prize and a trophy. The winner’s school also receives $500.00 and a floating trophy.

Second place will receive $300 cash prize and a trophy. The school also receives $300 and a plaque, while the third-place winner gets a $200.00 cash prize and a trophy. The school also receives $200 and a plaque.