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Air Care issues training challenge to firms

Career steps: Stephon Paynter, 15, a pupil at Impact Mentoring Academy during his eight-week work placement at Air Care

An air conditioning firm has challenged other companies to take on young Bermudians for summer training schemes.

Brendan Stones, general manager at Air Care, one of the island’s biggest AC and mechanical services operations, said the company had provided training over the summer for a 15-year-old pupil, in partnership with Impact Mentoring Academy in Smith’s.

Mr Stones said: “Air Care is committed to encouraging the uptake by Bermudians of entering this industry and I challenge other firms on the island to do the same thing.”

Stephon Paynter, who spent eight weeks with Pembroke-based Air Care before returning to his studies at Impact, said: “I’m used to coming home and hearing my parents say ‘oh, work was so hard.’ Now I understand what they are talking about.

“it was definitely a great experience and I would recommend getting out into the working world. I have learnt a fair amount about refrigeration and AC, but there is still a lot more to learn.”

Mr Stones added there was potential for the link-up with Impact to strengthen in the future.

He said: “It was a fantastic experience, not only for Stephon, but for Air Care as well.

“To sit in our most recent management team meeting and hear the positive comments from our senior managers was a testament both to Stephon’s performance over the past two months, as well as the benefit of having undertaken the experience.”

Mr Stones added: “Hopefully, Stephon will not only tell his friends that the HVAC industry is one worth pursuing, but will choose it himself.

“The HVAC industry is very short of qualified Bermudians and certification and training opportunities do exist.”

Stephon spent eight weeks with experienced Air Care technicians and given hands-on experience on a range of assignments around the island.