Two tie for NCB Top Innovator title
Kendra Lee and Stacey-Ann Pearson are the 2017 NCB Innovation Internship Top Innovators.
The students from the University of the West Indies and graduate of Lafayette College, respectively, tied for the premier title after their final presentations at the NCB Innovation Internship closing ceremony held recently at the NCB Wellness Centre. The duo each walked away with a trophy and US$500.
With more than 2,300 applicants from around the world, some as far as South Africa and Egypt, NCB selected 15 exceptional university students to participate in its novel think tank. Now in its second year, the programme organised by NCB’s Innovation Unit serves as a unique opportunity for motivated, intelligent young minds to create and share ideas for revolutionary products and services. All this while receiving valuable business skills and having a great time.
“Essentially it was fun,” said Lee, a second-year medical sciences student.
“It was a programme that forced us to learn. But it wasn’t a harsh learning experience, it was fun and interactive. It made you want to know what things you could do to help NCB,” she added.
After four weeks of rigorous research, intense ideation sessions and pitching three ideas per week, the two young ladies proved to be the leaders in innovation among their peers.
...Lee pitches idea on better serving customers
Kendra Lee is no stranger to awards, having been on teams which successfully conceptualised and pitched impressive ideas, winning two of the four weekly prizes during the NCB Innovation Internship.
She and Stacey-Ann Pearson were the only interns to present two ideas to the directors, executives and other invited guests at the closing ceremony.
Pitching her idea for an NBC financial toolkit app, “FinKit”, Lee conceptualised a new way for NCB to better serve the needs of its customers. The toolkit is proposed to help people with budgeting, bill payment, account monitoring and a whole host of other tasks.
...Pearson savvy with presentation
Stacey-Ann Pearson’s won two of the four ‘fun awards’ at the NCB Innovation Internship closing ceremony.
Pearson was awarded the most ‘presentation savvy’ which was evident from her fluent and interactive delivery of her idea, 'NCB Protect'. This application, Pearson proposed, will help NCB customers keep track of their credit card activity, be aware of scams involving their card with the option of remotely shutting down the credit card and notifying relevant authorities.
She also received the award for ‘best team player’, sanctioned by her peers through an uproar of applause. But the top prize came as a surprise.
“My team and I did not win any of the weekly prizes so this is a real shock and a happy experience. We really worked hard. I am humbled by the recognition,” she said. Going on to study Global Affairs at the Tsinghua University in Beijing, China after receiving the Schwarzman Scholarship, Pearson said her ideas were motivated by a desire to make Jamaica a more forward-thinking nation.
...Interns' talent impresses NCB exec
During the month-long NCB Innovation Internship programme, the group of 15 came up with more than 350 ideas, pitched 60, and presented their top 11 at the closing ceremony.
From virtual artificial intelligence, interactive banking applications, robo-investing, to mobile ATMs, Nadeen Matthews, NCB Chief Digital & Marketing Officer, said she was quite impressed by the talented group.
“These are great ideas for us to take to the next level, and give us the opportunity to better serve our customers,” she said.
“The purpose of the programme is to source innovative ideas and to infuse the organisation with new ideas. Since young people are the next generation of customers we will be serving, it is important that we connect with them, understand how they see the world and get some innovative ideas from them that we at NCB can start thinking about developing.”
Matthews went on to explain that their ideas fully embraced the Day 1 culture that NCB is now focused on. This includes being customer-obsessed, that is thinking about the customer and working backwards, focusing on results, not the process and embracing new trends and technology, which is already demonstrated by the establishment of NCB’s Innovation and Agile Labs.
“We are not focused on just keeping up or catching up but wanting to be ahead of the trends that are out there so we can remain the financial service champion,” Matthews said.
Holding fast to their commitment of welcoming back innovative interns, NCB was excited to announce that the Top Innovator for 2016, Jase-Omeileo West will be joining the team in September.