Three more young Caymanians have earned academic scholarships through Dart’s Minds Inspired programme.
Last month, Dart announced that Thomas Sevik Jr. and Diandra Whittaker were the recipients of the 2017 Minds Inspired High School Scholarship and Dominic Dyer was named the recipient for the 2017 Minds Inspired William A. Dart Memorial Scholarship for university.
Minds Inspired high school scholars receive a four-year high school scholarship based on academic excellence with a focus in the areas of mathematics and science. They also participate in a multi-year mentoring programme with Dart employees and special enrichment experiences designed to introduce new horizons and expand recipients’ worldview outside of the classroom. The William A. Dart Memorial Scholarship, valued at up to CI$40,000, is awarded annually to a Caymanian student who demonstrates academic excellence and is well-rounded in extracurricular activities.
Every year, we are amazed by the student applicants and their high level of achievement both inside and outside of the classroom. Dart Enterprises CEO
“Every year, we are amazed by the student applicants and their high level of achievement both inside and outside of the classroom,” said Dart Enterprises Chief Executive Officer Mark VanDevelde of the high school scholarship applicants. “It becomes more challenging each year for the scholarship selection committee to choose from the bright, diverse group of applicants. Diandra and Thomas are committed to their education and plan to use their knowledge to improve our community. We are confident that they will be excellent ambassadors for the Minds Inspired brand.”
Thomas, a top performing student at the Layman E. Scott High School in Cayman Brac, is well known at Minds Inspired events, having participated in the Mathematics Challenge, the Cayman Islands SeaPerch Competition and the recent Marine Engineering and Naval Architecture Camp. He is not yet sure of his desired career, but he does know he wants to pursue a degree in one of the STEM — science, technology, engineering and mathematics — subjects.
Diandra has been recognised numerous times as the “Student of the Month” at St. Ignatius Catholic School, and has also been named “Student of the Year” for the past three years. She is very active in her school’s extracurricular activities and plays multiple sports, including football and touch rugby. She hopes to become a neurologist and wants to be the first Caymanian physician to focus on treating chronic brain-related illnesses in children and adolescents.
Dominic, who was selected from nearly 40 applicants for the university scholarship, will attend Columbia University in New York City and study economics starting this month. In addition to performing well in academics, Dominic is a gifted athlete. He most recently won gold and bronze medals at the 2017 CARIFTA Games for his performance in the 5000-metre and 1500-metre events respectively. Dominic was also recognised as Cayman Prep’s Athlete of the Year for 2017.
“Dominic’s ability to balance his personal life, his philanthropic efforts and academia is remarkable and will serve him well as he continues his education,” said VanDevelde.
The Minds Inspired High School Scholarship programme involves a blind-selection process designed to remove distinguishing details such as school, age and gender to keep the identity of the applicants confidential from the selection panel, which consists of eight professionals — five leaders in the local industry and community, plus three Dart senior executives.
This year, a group of 10 candidates were shortlisted from the total applications submitted and advanced to a second level of selection, which involved a mathematics and science test and a timed essay. Eight of those students progressed to an in-person interview with a Dart executive. Finally, a selection committee reviewed the total information on each of the five selected finalists, reviewing each application with no distinguishing details, and then selecting the two scholarship recipients.