Come January, one of Guyana’s oldest private educational institutions turns 40 and its Chief Executive Officer James Bovell says that in its own right the institution has made a noteworthy contribution to the growth and development of both business and formal academic education in Guyana.
Located at 43 Brickdam, the complex that houses the Business School was once the home of the Bovells, the founders and owners of the institution. The serving CEO and his mother, Erma Bovell, are the current ‘engine room’ that has driven the institution from its 1975 founding as a commercial school. Over time, the Business School has significantly broadened its horizons, transforming itself into an institution of higher learning. Its most significant service is its role in providing individuals and institutions with formal training in various aspects of the discipline of business studies.
James Bovell says the Business School has its origins in his mother’s interest in providing young girls who had less than impressive schooling with ‘second chances’ to educate themselves. In those early days, the school was referred to as a commercial school and the curriculum included English, Mathematics, Shorthand, Typewriting and Office Practice.
Students were prepared primarily for the Pitman’s Secretarial Examinations in these subject areas.
In 1987, the management of the Business School was transferred to James and Cindy Bovell and ten years later, in 1997, its high school was established. By 1998 the institution had added a number of vocational and professional accreditation examinations to its part-time and full-time curricula. These included the Association of Accounting Technician (AAT) and the London Chamber of Commerce (LCC). Today, the Business School is a modern career-focused educational mall catering for a wide range of academic programmes. The school’s academic ‘offerings’ include faculties for Business, Accounting, Science, Project Management, Marketing, Information Technology and Specialised Training.
Bovell credits the Business School with raising the levels of education and training in institutions in both the public and private sectors. He believes that the emergence of the institution has come at a time when the country’s economy is crying out for skills in a number of areas and the orientation of the institution is centred around the goal of providing “relevant skills for the country’s development.”
The Business School has secured accreditation from a number of reputable international educational institutions including the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM), the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), the Association of Business Executives (ABE), the Caribbean Examination Council (CXC) and the American Management Association (AMA). Graduates from these courses receive certification awarded by these bodies.
Bovell says that the school’s Corporate Training Department caters to the needs of small and medium sized enterprises (SME), targeting supervisory and management staff. Over time the school has provided training for a number of organizations including the National Insurance Scheme, the Guyana Office for Investment, the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Tourism, Sterling Products Ltd, Ansa McAL among others. The school also provides courses for sponsored employees.
In an interview earlier this week Work Study Director Erma Bovell commented on the quality of the graduates which the Business School puts into workplaces. “On the whole our graduates are recognized and respected,” she says.
Outstanding servants of the Business School will be appropriately honoured during the period of the celebrations.