THE School of Business and Computer Studies (SBCS) is not closing down due to changes in the Government Assistance with Tuition Expenses (GATE) programme, said SBCS executive director Dr Robin Maraj in a statement on the school’s website on Wednesday.
He said he was providing clarification in reply to concerns arising after a recent CNC3 television news programme that, he said, had only broadcast snippets of his interview with a reporter.
Maraj assured, “Of statements made that we are ‘closing down,’ these are exaggerated and erroneous.”
Clarifying the school’s identity, Maraj said SBCS began operation in 1987, well before GATE was introduced in 2006. In that 19-year period, most of the SBCS’s development took place, including the establishment of three of its four campuses. “SBCS was created not because of or for GATE but for our learners,” Maraj said. “In fact, over our 30-year existence we have graduated over 6,000 learners, many of whom are successfully employed locally and internationally.”
He said graduates hold qualifications (such as ACCA, CIPS and BTEC HND) from renowned foreign partner universities (such as the University of London, University of Greenwich, Heriot-Watt University, University of Sunderland and University of Leicester) are all internationally accredited and globally respected.
Maraj vitally clarified the SBCS’s status regarding accreditation versus registration.
“Like all tertiary education providers, SBCS is registered with the Accreditation Council of Trinidad and Tobago (ACTT) and we were among the first private institutes to do so,” Maraj said. “Once registered, all of our transnational programmes and foreign awarding bodies went through the process of being recognised by ACTT and are thus listed on their compendium. This was a precondition for GATE.
“Accreditation, however, only applies to local programmes.”
He added that each of the SBCS programmes had to undergo a rigorous assessment by the ACTT, including a market case justification, such that he believed his programmes met the country’s developmental needs.