Citizen Engagement Platform Seychelles


Citizen Engagement Platform Seychelles

First cohort of marine scholarship programme graduate

The six graduates with project coordinator Betty Mondon

The first cohort of the Marine Scholarship Programme funded by the Seychelles Conservation and Climate Adaption Trust, along with multiple partners received their certificates after completing the comprehensive nine-month training.

The six young Seychellois aged between 18 and 25 years old who completed the training – Wise Oceans – are Marielle Corgat, Hansa Freminot, Gaelle Alissop, Stephanie Bouzin, Neeroy Monthy and Randy Dookley.

They received their certificates during a short ceremony held last Friday at the conference room of the Citizens Engagement Platform Seychelles (Ceps) at the Orion Mall.

The Marine Scholarship Programme is a project aimed at helping young adults to forge careers in the blue economy, which is the biggest growing economy in Seychelles, and to create the next generation of highly skilled professionals, innovators and stewards of the Seychelles marine environment.

It comprises both theoretical and practical components, and the students were based across Mahe and the inner islands and spent several months receiving training from both Wise Oceans and GVI Seychelles, in addition to placements with other partner organisations.

These included the Ministry of Agriculture, Climate Change and Environment; the University of Seychelles (UniSey); the Seychelles Parks and Gardens Authority, the Green Islands Foundation, the SIDS Youth AIMS Hub (SYAH) Seychelles, and the Ocean Project Seychelles.

Project coordinator for Wise Oceans Seychelles, Betty Mondon, who headed the scholarship programme, said the Marine Scholarship Programme embodies their core aims, and the goals of their partner organisations, to spark a passion for oceans, provide training and increase access to the marine field.

She expressed satisfaction with the success of the first cohort and thanked the Seychelles Conservation and Climate Adaption Trust (SeyCCAT) for funding the project as part of their Blue Grant scheme.

“This programme is aimed at increasing knowledge of the marine environment and through skills developed in a set training programme, increase opportunity for employment within the marine environment sector or further education,” she said.

Mrs Mondon said the topics covered were marine ecology, coral reef restoration, survey and research skills, and communications skills among others.

The trainees also got hands-on experience conducting researches and marine conservation work, including coral reef surveys, beach erosion and mangrove monitoring, and ridge to reef surveys, while also receiving training in first aid, diving and coral reef research diver certification.

One of the graduates, 22-year old Randy Dookley of Les Cannelles, applied for the training after completing his studies at the Seychelles Maritime Academy, and he described it as very useful.

One aspect he really enjoyed was a survey on juvenile sharks and he now wants to run his own conservation business.

“I would like to focus on sharks as it is among the most misunderstood species in the ocean, but whose role is so important although unknown to a lot of Seychellois. So I am planning on targeting this through my dive centre, which will not only be about diving and having fun, but incorporating the conservation aspect,” explained Dookley.

He said he is presently finalising his training to ensure he gets all the proper documents including his licenses as a dive master and skipper.

As for 23-year-old Gaelle Alissop, she spent four months at the UniSey, followed by two months with Wise Oceans based at Four Seasons Seychelles where she took part in coral restoration. She ended her training with GVI at Cap Ternay which was undertaking a survey on coral and various fish species, and there she managed to do her diving for open water and advanced open water certificates.

Alissop initially worked with Socomep, a fisheries quality and quantity control company working with different purse seiners that unload their fish in Port Victoria.

“I have loved the sea since I was a child and opted to do the course to gain more experience in the field and learn about the different species. I am very happy with the outcome and as my future career, I would like to venture more into diving,” said Alissop.

The Marine Scholarship Programme started in 2020, but had to be interrupted due to the Covid-19 pandemic, before being resumed last year.

Courtesy: Patsy Canaya (

First cohort of marine scholarship programme graduate
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