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STEP Programme Record 15 August 2003

The Department of Trade & Industry reports a record number of undergraduates and employers taking part in this year's Shell Technology Enterprise Programme (STEP).

STEP is a well respected summer student work placement programme. It is designed to help local employers overcome a specific business challenge using the skills and enthusiasm of a local undergraduate.

Minister for the Department of Trade & Industry, Hon Alex Downie MHK, stated , "I am delighted that this Programme builds on its own success, year after year". Twenty-two undergraduates have been matched with nineteen employers, breaking last year's record of twenty participants.

The range of organisations taking part in the Programme is very diverse, covering quarries, on-line gambling, higher education, the postal services, commercial waste disposal, environmental concerns, multimedia, information security, medical research, financial and corporate services.

Projects this year reflect the diversity of the organisations. They include recycling, marketing, research, environmental studies, system reviews and IT projects.

The STEP competition is to be held at the IOM International Business School on 5 September 2003, which will provide students with an important forum to present their projects to invited host organisations. The premier award will go to the "Most Enterprising Student 2003". This year there will also be an award from a local charitable organisation to the student giving the "Best Presentation". All participants will receive a certificate and a token of appreciation from the Department of Trade & Industry. The winner will go forward to the North West UK Regional Final on 30 September 2003 at the Wigan Investment Centre and, if successful at that event, to the UK National Final in London on 29 October 2003.

The Department would like to thank all who have helped to make this year's Programme a success. It is intended to publish some IOM case studies later this year in order to encourage applications from undergraduates and organisations in 2004 and beyond.

Ian Moncrief-Scott, who has helped promote the Programme to local employers said, "I am pleased to be involved in yet another successful STEP Programme. STEP is a valuable initiative for the Island's future. It provides the Island's young people with an opportunity to develop their skills on the Island and gain vital experience. I am very grateful to all the local organisations involved for their commitment and enthusiasm."

Organisations wishing to receive information about future STEP programmes are requested to contact Ian Moncrief-Scott on 664883/469261 or ims@manx.net. The Department's STEP Manager is Vicki Webster, who can be contacted on 685074 or Vicki.Webster@dti.gov.im.

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