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12 graduate from Nations University MBA programme

The first batch of 12 students of the Nations University-run Master’s in Business Administration (MBA) programme graduated Tuesday evening at a ceremony held at the Pegasus Hotel.

Three other students received the graduate diploma in management and another received the graduate certificate in management. The programmes were administered by the university in collaboration with the Australian Institute of Business (AIB).

Nations University Director Brian O’Toole noted that the facilitators of the local programme must be at least holders of recognised MBAs themselves, with extensive teaching experience and be immersed in the business world. Among those who have facilitated the programme are Michelle Johnson, Selene Davis, Yog Mahadeo, Ruth Lee and Indar Deodat, and there are currently moves to expand the facilitating net to include more individuals even from Trinidad and as far as the U.S.

Standard

“We are doing this because we are committed to getting the best possible people, because AIB is very, very clear about the standard that we have to submit,” said O’Toole. At a public meeting on the programme held at the Pegasus Hotel, he disclosed that a number of persons have already stated their interest to undertake the MBA programme.

Currently, there are three levels of persons eligible for the programme, that is, individuals with a recognised first degree; individuals with an advanced diploma and three years of work experience or individuals that have been in a managerial position for at least three years.

The evident desire of many to be a part of the programme is understandable, as according to AIB Chairman of the Research Committee, Professor Emeritus Kevin O’Brien, efforts will continue to be made to maintain a high quality programme in a very flexible way. He disclosed that the visit here has also afforded them a chance to meet staff and facilitators and other key players at the local university

The AIB, according to its Academic Board Chairman, Professor Rod Oxenburry, is an approved higher education provider in Australia which is accredited by the government there. He also noted that it is registered to provide a number of business degrees. He stated that the AIB had built a great deal of expertise which has aided the delivery of the MBA in a number of countries in Asia and Africa as well as in the United Kingdom and now the Caribbean, which utilise a model of the programme which could last between 12 and 15 months.

Impressed

Oxenburry said, “I was very impressed by the Nations University and the people that are running it and making the provision for courses… We have been able to assess the programme in a preliminary way, but we do have a fair idea of how it operates anyway.”

O’Brien, along with Oxenburry, was tasked with handing over certificates to the graduating batch and according to the Research Committee chairman, “there will always be senior people from AIB attending future graduations.”

According to Professor Oxenburry, the AIB was in fact fortunate to find a like-minded partner to really increase opportunities for people in Guyana to help them develop and perhaps get the skills to find ways of trying to contribute to the economy.

Those graduating include bank managers, entrepreneurs and persons working at Caricom, the Health Ministry, Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo), Digicel, Guyana Power and Light (GPL), Laparkan, and the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA). Graduating with certificate in management are: Davindra Persaud; diploma in management Rama Persaud, Jailall Ragnauth, Sahadeo Ramkirath; and with masters of business administration Verlene David, Vishnu Doerga, Sherwyn Greaves, Jharana John, Bibi Jumaladeen, Brent Lambert, Shonnet Moore, Jadoonauth Persaud, Stacy Phillips, Gopie Sowdagar, Joyann Wickhma and Shereeda Yusuf.

Intake

The students started their MBA studies in October 2011. Nations University is now on to its fifth MBA intake. More than 110 persons have joined the programme. It was noted during the graduation ceremony that one aspect of the MBA is the production of a research paper on a local issue. Five of these studies were of such quality that they are in the process of being considered for publication by a variety of international research journals. Vishnu Doerga was the class valedictorian.

The ceremony included prominent business officials and the keynote address was delivered by ANSA McAL Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Berverly Harper, who emphasised the importance of having integrity, intelligence and energy in every endeavour undertaken.

Mings Products and Services CEO Stanley Ming in his charge to the graduating class emphasised the importance of being visionaries for the future and progress of Guyana.

Prime Minister Samuel Hinds also made brief remarks, noting that young minds are what are essential for Guyana’s development and self-development is important for progress.

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