The Lankan Angel Network (LAN) recently partnered with Ladies’ College, Colombo for the school’s innovative “Building Future Leaders” program. This is Sri Lanka’s first structured initiative to bring in corporate leaders, business professionals, and partners from various industry and corporate bodies, to share their experience and impart important skills which will enable the future success of these secondary school students who are at a pivotal point in their lives.
Initiated and driven by Ladies’ College Colombo, with LAN providing access to its network and expertise; “Building Future Leaders” highlights the importance of a holistic education and life skills, along with business networking, to better educate students about the new horizons available to them in terms of career opportunities within both traditional and non-traditional fields.
LAN, in collaboration with its distinguished partners Ceylon Chamber of Commerce (CCC), American Chamber of Commerce in Sri Lanka (AMCHAM), Great Places to Work (GPTW), AICPA & CIMA, additionally delivered mentoring and professional support, including offering up some highly sought after speakers, for this program.
“Shaping our future is best achieved by giving our young students every opportunity to redefine their lives by equipping them to make passionate and unique contributions that rely on creativity, courage, confidence and integrity,” opined Ms. Deepika Dassanaike, Principal of Ladies’ College Colombo. She also noted; “The ‘Building Future Leaders’ program at Ladies’ College is proving to be invaluable since it not only encourages our students to ruminate on their true potential, but it also enlightens them to a number of futuristic career paths.
Beyond that, our students have also been emboldened as a result of the program bringing in a variety of inspiring and highly successful Sri Lankan leaders from multiple fields. We are not just helping them prepare for a bright and constructive future ahead, but also equipping them with both professional and entrepreneurial skills; making their overall education prior to leaving school a truly holistic, all-encompassing experience.”
Professor Malik Ranasinghe, Chairperson of People Development Committee of Ceylon Chamber of Commerce commenting on the program said, “We are passionate about building an employable pool of future talent in Sri Lanka and we are positive that this change must start in an early stage and hence this program was initiated”.
Positive feedback about the program piloted at Ladies’ College Colombo has given LAN and its partners the confidence to explore deploying this holistic career development program at other secondary schools. Attempts to further integrate programs like these into the national school curriculums, at earlier levels, will help build the foundations of leadership into Sri Lankan society. It is also hoped that such programs will prove critical for children to experience first-hand the many different varieties of career opportunities available to them, paving the way for a brighter future. And by pushing for its adoption within the national educational system in the near future, these initiatives will help ensure that no child is left behind due to a lack of opportunity.
Commenting on the “Building Future Leaders” program, LAN Chairperson & Axiata Digital Labs Chief Peoples Officer Ms. Chandi Dharmaratne emphasized the program’s focus on holistic education, as well as its offered invaluable exposure to industry experts and leaders. “We celebrate the success of the Building Future Leaders program at Ladies College Colombo, spearheaded by Professor Malik Ranasinghe – Ceylon Chamber of Commerce and the Lankan Angel Network. This initiative has provided students with the unique opportunity to explore various industries, professions, competencies, and skills, allowing them to make informed decisions about their future pursuits. Through interactive sessions and expert-led discussions, the program has equipped students with valuable insights and networking opportunities, empowering them to confidently embark on their chosen paths.”
Ms. Dharmaratne further highlighted the program’s focus on networking and fostering connections, empowering students to become well-informed about industry requirements. And she also added that by developing essential skills and competencies necessary to overcome entry barriers in their chosen fields, the program has laid a strong foundation for students’ professional journeys with a bright promise for their future.
A platform for angel and private investors who invest in high-growth early-stage Sri Lankan ventures with the goal of creating an impact by reducing inequality, LAN, in addition to being led by a woman, features four other female board members and patrons, which is significantly more than in other Sri Lankan corporates. Supporting trailblazing programs such as the “Building Future Leaders” series, at Ladies’ College Colombo, strongly aligns with LAN’s own ongoing commitment to empowering Sri Lanka’s Women Entrepreneurs.
“It was truly a privilege and honour to work with Ms. Chandi Dharmaratne who, upon our invitation, has brought to this program a vision, as well as the involvement of a high calibre of professionals, that have inspired our girls,” said Ms. Taanya Tranchell, Career Guidance Counsellor at Ladies’ College Colombo.
Additionally, she commented; “I am also deeply grateful to Ms. Thinushka Gunasekara who came onboard to support this project and worked hard to give our students this opportunity. At a time when young people have to really work hard to find their way in the world, the knowledge and exposure the ‘Building Future Leaders’ program gave them is definitely a huge boost to their future! I hope many more schools will introduce this program as a catalyst to enriching their students with key life skills and knowledge before releasing them into the world!”
David Cameron kicks off Port City Colombo’s global investment drive
Representatives of top corporates in the UAE, accompanied by high-potential investors, property developers, hotel owners, and leaders in the hospitality and real estate industries, converged on the iconic settings of the Ritz Carlton in Abu Dhabi and the Armani Hotel at Burj Khalifa in Dubai to explore, understand, and assess the investment potential of Sri Lanka, with particular emphasis on the transformative Port City Colombo project, a press release said.
The release adds: ‘This elite gathering took place in the presence of the ruling families of the UAE, engaging in a structured conversation led by David Cameron, former British Prime Minister, who outlined a compelling case for investing in Sri Lanka. The discussion was moderated by Niranjan de S Deva Aditya, a former British and European MP, currently serving as the Presidential Advisor to the President of Sri Lanka, Ranil Wickremesinghe.
‘The event was held in partnership with Port City Colombo’s regulatory authority, the Colombo Port City Economic Commission, and the primary developer, CHEC Port City Colombo, with the invaluable support of the Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute, representing an astounding $12 trillion in assets.
‘David Cameron, the former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, engaged the audience in an interactive session with his insights on the fast-evolving trade and investment trends in the South-Asian region, the role of the UAE, and the pivotal role of Port City Colombo in transforming the global business landscape.
‘Commenting on Sri Lanka’s recovery over the last few years, Cameron stated that while the country has had its share of challenges, these challenges have also presented ample opportunity, with Port City Colombo at the center of such opportunity. Further commenting on the UAE, Cameron stated, “The UAE is a good case for the potential that can be reached if the right environment is created. I strongly believe Sri Lanka has the potential to reach this, particularly at this point, with all the right reforms taking place and supported by the commitment of President Wickramesinghe.”
‘Sri Lanka’s Banking Guide for Investors & BOI Companies’ launched
Sampath Bank PLC, in collaboration with the Board of Investment of Sri Lanka (BOI) and the Ministry of Investment Promotion, unveiled a comprehensive Banking Guide titled, ‘Sri Lanka’s Banking Guide for Investors and BOI Companies’, a Sampath Bank press release said.
The release adds: ‘The event was held at the Sampath Bank’s corporate office on August 28 with the participation of senior dignitaries from the BOI and Sampath Bank PLC.
‘This Banking Guide serves as a strategic initiative to support the nation’s drive to attract foreign direct investments. It further offers comprehensive banking insights tailored for investors and BOI companies, addressing key areas such as investment accounts, operational banking, borrowing solutions, and related financial services.’
Public Finance Committee calls for report on wheat stocks
SJB MP Dr. Harsha de Silva has instructed the Auditor General’s Department to estimate the stock of wheat flour currently available in warehouses and submit an audit report within 2 months. He said that if a pricing formula for wheat flour had been adopted, unscrupulous elements would not have been able to exploit consumers.
The matter was discussed when the Committee on Public Finance met recently under the Chairmanship of Dr. de Silva.
The members of the Committee pointed out that wheat flour was sold at different prices. However, according to the prices declared by the Ministry of Finance, one kilo of wheat flour had to be sold at Rs 198.
Recalling the efforts made to prepare a price formula for gas and milk powder last season, the chairman pointed out the need for a price formula for regulating the price of wheat. The Committee emphasised that a price formula should be prepared immediately.
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