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Corporate Social
Responsibility

Commercial Bank ramps up its IT education initiatives

it cisco

Offers Cisco’s ‘IT Essentials’ course to students via its online education programme

The Commercial Bank of Ceylon has partnered with Cisco Networking Academy to offer a comprehensive ‘IT Essentials’ course for teachers and students free of charge, further enhancing the Bank’s online Education programme conducted as a Corporate Social Responsibility initiative.
A group of 12 teachers from six schools have already completed the Cisco ‘IT Essentials-Instructor’ certificate course at Cisco Networking Centre at the University of Moratuwa under this programme. They were from Agamathi Balika Vidyalaya - Panadura, Thakshila Central College - Horana, Wewita Maithree Vidyalaya - Bandaragama, Kurukkuwa Central College - Madampe, Pallegama Secondary School - Deniyaya and the Computer Centre of St. Anne’s Church Wattala.

Meanwhile, Commercial Bank has enabled teachers from five schools to follow a certificate course in Microsoft Office and Free tools at the Gateway Institute, Colombo. The training programme covered 16 modules including the 2010 versions of Microsoft Office, Word, Excel, power Point, Access and Outlook. Other modules covered by the course included Pedagogical use of ICT, Windows 7 Operating system, Microsoft Auto College, Microsoft DreamSpark, Microsoft Mouse Mischief, and Windows Live Movie Maker. These teachers will thereafter offer relevant training modules to students at their schools.

The Cisco ‘IT Essentials’ course for students participating in the online IT education programme initiated by Commercial Bank, covers eight topics, including the fundamentals of computer hardware, software and concepts such as IT security, networking and the responsibilities of an IT professional.
At present, five schools that received IT Labs from Commercial Bank have commenced the Cisco ‘IT Essentials’ course, and 130 students are following it, the Bank said. A globally accepted ‘Cisco IT Essentials’ certificate will be presented to the students who successfully complete this course.
Cisco Networking Academy helps individuals prepare for industry-recognised certifications and entry level information and communication technology (ICT) careers in every type of industry. Students will earn foundational competencies in ICT while acquiring vital 21st century career skills in problem solving, collaboration, and critical thinking.

Commercial Bank commenced the second phase of its IT education programme by implementing an online learning programme via the IT laboratories it has donated. More than 50,000 children from 50 schools are now accessing carefully selected mathematics and science lessons via a specially created web platform, to supplement their regular lessons in these subjects

The Bank’s flagship CSR initiative of donating fully-equipped IT laboratories to schools across the country has to date donated 160 IT labs, and benefited more than 160,000 students. The schools are also provided accessories such as computer tables, printers and chairs, and the Bank provides assistance to maintain and upgrade these computer labs when necessary to ensure that the facilities benefit many batches of students.
Commercial Bank contributes a percentage of its post tax profits annually to its CSR Trust, established in 2004 with a start up capital of Rs. 25 million. The bank defines the overall goal of its CSR policy as ‘to generate measurable and sustainable social dividends for different segments of society, in particular those which require empowerment and enrichment.’

Other initiatives of Commercial Bank’s CSR Trust include presenting scholarships and laptops to undergraduates, providing English education to rural school children, supporting healthcare projects around the country, supporting facilities of war heroes, and funding projects for the preservation of culture and heritage.

The only Sri Lankan bank to be ranked among the Top 1000 banks of the world for four consecutive years (2011-2014), Commercial Bank operates a network of 241 branches and 609 ATMs in Sri Lanka. The bank has won multiple awards as Sri Lanka’s best bank over several years, and was adjudged one of the country’s 10 best corporate citizens by the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce in 2013 and 2014. The bank has been rated the Most Respected Bank in Sri Lanka by LMD for the past 10 years, has been the second Most Respected Corporate entity in the country overall for the past four years, and been rated No 1 in Sri Lanka for Honesty in 2013 and 2014 by the magazine.

Photo Caption:
One of the training programmes conducted for teachers, at the Cisco Networking Centre of the University of Moratuwa.