Bishop’s student wins Caribbean essay competition

Trinidad - Celeste Augustine, a 16-year-old student of Bishop Anstey High School, has won CANTO’s World Telecommunication and Information Society Day (WTISD) essay competition. In July she will be on her way to the Atlantis, Paradise Island , Bahamas courtesy TSTT to take part in CANTO’s 24th Annual Conference and Trade Exhibition; an international telecoms conference.

Celeste’s essay on the theme “Connecting People with Disabilities: ICT Opportunities for All” outmatched competitors throughout the Caribbean in the 15-17 age group. She focused on how communications technology helps those with conditions like blindness, deafness and autism. “It was a lot of research,” Ms Augustine said. “My mommy (Debra Augustine) and I researched for many hours. It caused me to have a lot of understanding for people with disabilities, the many things we take for granted that they don’t have.”

Head of Public Relations and External Affairs at TSTT, Camille Salandy said, “we are very pleased by Celeste’s success and glad to be able to facilitate her attendance at the CANTO conference. Celeste has demonstrated an acute awareness of how communications technology benefits a society. This element of Youth development is a high priority for TSTT along with other avenues in education, health, sport and culture.”

CANTO (Caribbean Association of National Telecommunications Organisations) held its second annual WTISD essay competition in 2008. The association, founded in 1985 as a non-profit organisation of telephone companies, has over 100 members from 38 countries.

“Telecommunications and telecom companies can have such a positive impact on lives,” said Regenie Fraser, CANTO’s Secretary General. “With this essay competition we get to highlight that in two ways – directly by focusing the topic on its capacity to help the disabled, and indirectly as a tool to educate our region’s youth.” Participants competed for the TSTT-sponsored Bahamas trip (which is to attend CANTO’s 24th Annual Conference and Trade Exhibition in July of this year) and cash prize. Second and third place winners received top-of-the-line mobile phones and money prizes.


WTISD, spearheaded by the International Telecommunications Union, was on May 17, 2008.