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Siad students rewarded for participating in training and design competition |25 September 2021

Siad students rewarded for participating in training and design competition

A souvenir photograph to mark the occasion (Photo: Louis Toussaint)

A group of 16 students from the Seychelles Institute of Art and Design (Siad) who attended a two-day virtual workshop on intellectual property rights from July 28-29 and participated in a brochure design competition, have received their certificates of participation.

The training and the design competition were organised by Siad in collaboration with the US embassy, which funded both, on July 28-29 on the occasion of the World Intellectual Property Day, observed on April 26, 2021.

Additionally the two winning teams of the brochure design competitions, out of a total of four teams, on Wednesday received their cash prizes of US $150 each.

The prizes were presented to the winner by the US chargée d’affaires for Seychelles and Mauritius Judes DeBaere and the US political and economic officer for Seychelles Nicolas Christian.

Following the presentations to the students, Mrs DeBaere further presented the brochures on intellectual property rights to the principal secretary for trade Cillia Mangroo for dissemination.

A large majority of the students were unable to attend the certificate presentation ceremony due to being in quarantine.

The training held in July had been facilitated by Dr Nora Ho Tu Nam from IPVocate Africa which is a legal firm based in Mauritius and aimed to provide awareness on different elements to intellectual property rights that entrepreneurs and creators can use to protect their assets.

In her remarks, the director of Siad, Christine Chetty-Payet, stated that copyright is an essential component of the modern society and provides incentive for creators to produce unique work without the fear of it being poached by others.

“It is also worth mentioning that educating students about copyright has been recognised by leading organisation standards […] Students must know how to interact with creative works in ways that are both ethical and legal,” she added.

“As director of Siad, I am very impressed not only with the level of participation but also with the organisation of training which was done virtually. The modality of the workshop has taught us that we can make possible what we often perceive as impossible,” stated Mrs Chetty-Payet.

On her part Mrs DeBaere said that this year’s World Intellectual Day highlighted the critical role that small businesses play in our society and how having a better grasp on intellectual property rights could support their growth and resilience.

“Every small business starts with one person’s or one family’s dream. When that dream is coupled with grit and determination, ideas turn into product, brands and creative works. Pair those ideas with the strength of an effective intellectual property system and you have the foundation necessary for new business opportunities, increased employment and greater economic prosperity,” remarked Mrs DeBaere.

The chargée d’affaires noted that this is why the United States remains committed to increasing awareness and enforcement of intellectual property rights and why the embassy partnered with Siad to organise the double events for the students at the institute.

Twenty-year-old graphic design student, Nikeshia Lépère, who is in her third and final year, said that the training was very helpful.

“As a young artist that will soon join the working world, the training has made me understand that I have the right to protect the right of my creative works and how individuals can legally make use of them. It has really opened my eyes and I hope to share my knowledge with those who are unaware of intellectual property rights.”

Ms Lépère was also part of one of the winning teams for the brochure competition and stated that she was happy that her team was recognised for their work.

Another third year graphics students, Aurellie Bradburn, who was on the second winning team, said that the training was interesting and beneficial to her and her colleagues.

Although intellectual property rights is covered in one of its modules, Siad’s lecturers are lacking in some of the key knowledge to fully deliver to the students and Mrs Chetty-Payet noted that Siad, the department of trade and the European Union are working on training programmes for its lecturers.


Elsie Pointe

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