News Release: HAMILTON, Bermuda – Centennial Bermuda Foundation, (Centennial) is pleased to welcome three previous scholarship recipients to its Scholarship Committee, which reviews applications and recommends awards each year.
Shannon Davis, Harry Masters and Michael Branco have joined the committee which grants funds to Bermudian students for post-secondary education. Their appointment follows Centennial’s public advertisement for its scholarship alumni to apply for the positions. They believe in the importance of creating equitable opportunities and inspiring young Bermudians to have and achieve educational goals. They will also be part of Centennial’s upcoming strategic review of its scholarship programme.
Shannon Davis, a social studies teacher at Dellwood Middle School, understands the academic requirements for student success and has experience in the public school system. She graduated from CedarBridge Academy and Bermuda College and attained undergraduate degrees in Arts and Education and a Masters of Education.
Ms Davis understands how equity impacts a child’s success in the classroom and how students who learn differently must be equally supported through the curriculum. She believes that a college mindset must start earlier in our academic system and she is passionate about encouraging public school students.
She said: “When I was awarded a Centennial Scholarship, it served as a stepping stone that I needed on my journey to becoming an educator. I am beyond proud to be part of the organisation that serves as a stepping stone for students who are determined to reach their goals.”
Harry Masters lives in Nairobi, Kenya and works for a management consulting and financial advisory firm dedicated to growth in Sub-Saharan Africa. His experience is in investment advisory, venture capital, research, and consulting in renewable energy and climate change. He has been involved with BEST, KBB, and Greenrock and has a passion to create equitable opportunities for all Bermudians. Mr Masters hopes to increase resources for those most in need and is keen to support the scholarship committee’s strategic planning work and selection process.
He said, “It’s an honour to serve on this committee. Knowledge is one of my core values, and this role allows me to support others in their pursuit of knowledge. I benefited from the Eldon H Trimingham Business Scholarship for Postgraduate Studies, which allowed me to take a “non-traditional” path both during and following business school, specifically working the last 4 years with companies, investors, and donors to develop the private sector in Sub-Saharan Africa.”
Michael Branco is Chairman of Celeste Ventures which owns a number of his startup companies including Fireminds, Premier Tickets, Innovation House and several investments. He serves on the Bermuda College Task force reviewing IT infrastructure and technology in the curriculum. The first in his family to attend university, Mr Branco emphasises the importance of educational opportunities and he wants to ensure that students have access and are supported through the scholarship process.
He said, “Many years ago when I interviewed for the Eldon Trimingham Scholarship I pledged to the scholarship committee that I would expand my contribution to the community as payback for the scholarship. Joining the Centennial Scholarship Committee allows me to continue my commitment to Bermuda and it is an honour to be selected.”
Three members will leave the Scholarship Committee this year. Kelly Francis is stepping down, although continues to serve on a grant review committee.
Centennial’s Managing Director, Allison Towlson thanked Ms Francis for her dedication and time over the years. “Kelly has spent countless hours reading scholarship applications, conducting interviews, and supporting the selection process. We sincerely thank her and look forward to her continued support on the Public Education grants review committee.”
Craig Tucker and Tim Marshall plan to retire from the committee at the end of this year.