Jackie Doak and Julian Solomon
Dart Scholar Julian Solomon completed a six-week work experience rotation with Dart Real Estate's President — Jackie Doak — where he experienced projects at various stages of development.

Dart Scholarships enriching the future

Dart Scholars' education outside the classroom includes innovative and exciting enrichment opportunities and work experience that many kids only dream of:

Summer 2017

Five Dart Scholars spent two weeks in Oxford, England, attending a summer school held at the prestigious university. Living and studying on campus, the high school students explored a subject of their choice, getting hands-on experience and potentially discovering a future career path.

“We organise a trip like this every year as part of our Dart Scholar enrichment programme,” says Glenda McTaggart, Dart's Education Programmes Manager. “It stretches the high school students: allows them to try new things, think differently, and gives them a taste of a different culture.”

In previous years, scholars have visited Dart NeuroScience in California, CERN in Switzerland and Super Camps at Brown and Stanford universities.

When the Dart Scholarship launched in 2012 — as Minds Inspired — its purpose was simple: to select and support two successful Grade 9 Caymanian students in their pursuit of excellence in maths and science for the duration of their high school career.

The high school scholarship was swiftly followed in 2013 with the introduction of the William A. Dart Memorial Scholarship which is awarded annually for up to four years to a student pursuing a bachelor’s degree from an accredited overseas institution and renews annually subject to academic performance.

Fast-forward five years and Minds Inspired has grown into two incredible programmes: Dart Scholar scholarships and Minds Inspired programmes — which together are developing Cayman’s top talent well beyond the classroom.

Adding value

Dart Scholars' education and enrichment opportunities, and Minds Inspired's educational and community initiatives, are designed to inspire Cayman’s youngest and brightest minds to excel. The focus on science, technology, engineering and maths, commonly known as STEM, is rooted in the Dart family’s belief that these subjects are fundamental building blocks for academic success and demonstrates their commitment to investing in Cayman’s future leaders and innovators.

What really sets the Dart Scholarships and Minds Inspired programmes apart is the desire to broaden the young minds they reach through enrichment programmes and work experience.

Each summer Dart Scholars are among the approximately 30 summer students who join Dart's workforce as part of the Minds Inspired work experience programme. They each receive thoughtful, individualised work plans that address real business needs and help them gain knowledge in their chosen area of study.

Glenda is passionate about adding value to these work placements. “Beyond on-the-job work experience, we create networking opportunities, provide mentoring and schedule professional development workshops and lunch-and-learns to help broaden our students’ perspectives and world views.”

Testifying to the programme’s success, 20 of Dart’s work experience students from the past five years have become full-time employees in eight different areas of the business.

Expanding horizons

Julian Solomon, recipient of the William A. Dart Scholarship in 2013, completed a graduate diploma in Law and started a Master of Science in Real Estate Investment programme at City University London in September 2017. During previous summer holidays, he embraced law-related work experience and led an HR research project, presenting his findings to Dart’s leadership team. Most recently he completed a six-week rotation with Dart Real Estate's President — Jackie Doak — where he experienced projects at various stages of development.

As part of his scholarship, Julian was one of the participants Dart sent to the global One Young World Summit in 2016. One Young World gathers the brightest young leaders from around the world, empowering them to make lasting connections to create positive change.

“It was absolutely inspiring and opened my eyes to the world of change and the amazing impact that young people can make. Being a Dart Scholar is a privilege and an honour,” says Julian.

Other activities have included meeting with Richard Branson, Arnold Schwarzenegger and NASA astronauts, Captains Mark and Scott Kelly, and participating in a number of STEM challenges, both local and international.

These opportunities designed by Dart have a genuinely life-changing effect for the students and help inspire the next generation of Caymanian leaders.

“One of the best ways to give back and invest in Cayman’s future is to help transform today’s talent into tomorrow’s leaders and at Dart it’s integral to how we do business,” Glenda says. "It’s good for Cayman’s young people, it’s good for Dart’s business and it’s good for the future of the Cayman Islands.”