Sonoco Celebrates Graduation of 86 Students from Bread Avenue Academy

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By Foday Moriba Conteh

In a landmark event on Friday, May 24, 2024, Sonoco, a leading conglomerate, in partnership with the Ministry of Technical and Higher Education, certified its first cohort of 86 graduates from Bread Avenue Academy. These graduates successfully completed courses in Baking, Pastry and Entrepreneurship, marking a significant step in their professional journeys and opening up new opportunities in the culinary industry.

The certification ceremony, held at Bread Avenue in Wellington, Freetown, was attended by key stakeholders, including Government officials, Sonoco representatives and the graduates’ families. The event celebrated the hard work and dedication of the students, who are now equipped to launch their own businesses or advance their careers in the culinary field.

Mark Pritchard, General Manager of Sonoco, addressed the graduates and attendees, emphasizing Sonoco’s commitment to nurturing talent and promoting entrepreneurship among young people in Sierra Leone. “This certification is just the beginning,” Pritchard said. “Our Diploma courses are designed to be completed in four months, providing intensive training to ensure our students are well-prepared for the challenges ahead.”

He also highlighted Sonoco’s broader mission in Sierra Leone. “Our presence here, expanding from Guinea, is about more than business. It’s about transforming lives and contributing to the socio-economic development of the country,” he stated.

He expressed gratitude to the teaching staff for their dedication and to the Ministry of Technical and Higher Education and the National Council of Technical and Vocational Awards (NCTVA) for their support in accrediting Bread Avenue Academy.

Dr. Josephus J. Brimah, Chief Technical and Higher Education Officer at the Ministry of Technical and Higher Education, congratulated the graduates and praised the Academy’s progress. “Bread Avenue Academy has shown remarkable achievement in producing its first batch of certified students,” Dr. Brimah remarked.

He encouraged the graduates to continue striving towards their ambitions, leveraging the skills and knowledge gained from their training.

The ceremony concluded with the awarding of first-level certificates, signed by Sonoco, Bread Avenue and NCTVA, to the graduates. This certification not only validates their hard work but also positions them as qualified professionals ready to make significant contributions to the culinary industry.

Bread Avenue Academy, established by Sonoco, aims to impart essential baking, pastry and entrepreneurial skills to Sierra Leoneans, supporting the nation’s broader goals of economic development and self-sufficiency. This first graduation ceremony represents a milestone in Sonoco’s ongoing efforts to empower local talent and foster sustainable growth within the community.


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