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JIS News

To be educated at an illustrious, quality-centered institution is the dream of many well-thinking Jamaicans. However it is sometimes difficult to find a reputable institution, and even more difficult to afford the tuition.
The Management Institute of National Development (MIND) Mandeville Learning Centre, established in 1979, has been the institution of choice for many public and private sector workers. It serves seven parishes, including Clarendon, St. Elizabeth, Westmoreland, Hanover, St. James, Trelawny and Manchester.
Formerly MIND Mandeville Centre for Lifelong Learning, the government-owned, Executive Agency provides general training from a wide range of subject areas.
Its major subject areas include Accounting, Computer Applications, Customer Service, Government Accounting, Human Resource Management, Management Development, Holistic Governance and Public Sector Management, notes Lois Robinson, Regional Manager of MIND Mandeville.
Teachers’ Summer Specials, UWI at MIND, Administrative Management, Caribbean Examination Council and General Certificate Examination are other areas of study, which the institution offers.There are certain programmes that the institution engages in. These include MIND Online, MIND Consulting, The Caribbean MIND, Research at MIND, and Friday Policy Forum, to name a few.
“Like the Hope (Road) campus, we also offer customized training to our partnering clients and other organisations through ‘Your Place or MIND”, Mrs. Robinson says. She adds that, “this is designed to match the specialized needs of the organizations that we serve”.
‘Your Place or MIND’ provides the opportunity for organisations to modify most of MIND’s existing programmes to suit their peculiar manpower development needs. However, where needs cannot be addressed through existing courses, MIND will research and create a customized course, just for the client.
The Mandeville centre also offers unscheduled courses. “These are courses required by particular companies for their employees that do not exist in MIND’s curriculum, but are designed for the employees; and once it’s cost effective and we have enough persons we’ll hold the classes,” Mrs. Robinson tells JIS News.
She continues, “We have been successful in delivering the General Management course, a post graduate course targeted at mainly senior managers and middle managers”. This course has been offered since 2001. Comfortable air-conditioned classrooms with seating capacity of up to 40 persons, small student-to-teacher ratio, flexible class schedules and practical teaching strategies from highly qualified lecturers, are just a few of the excellent features enjoyed by students of the Centre.
“MIND is a training institution with competent and understanding lecturers. The lecturers hired at MIND teach well, they are highly qualified, and I have learnt a lot,” states Kemar Graham, a former student of the institution.
“I have gained tremendously from being a part of the institution. The lecturers were excellent in the sense that they were quite knowledgeable, not only from the textbooks, but also with hands-on experiences,” says Terryann Nembhard, a former student of MIND, now the Administrative Assistant to the Mayor of Manchester, Councillor Desmond Harrison. She continues, “Mrs. Robinson has tried to meet us half way in everything, and I encourage other persons who want to pursue HR (Human Resource) courses to do so at MIND Mandeville”.
The Regional Manager points to another reason why MIND Mandeville is an institution of choice. “We try to match our training delivery schedule to meet the needs of our targeted population,” she says. This is because most students are employed full-time, and may not always fit into the already scheduled classes. MIND Mandeville, like MIND’s Hope Road campus, has an exciting payment plan for its students.
‘Pay As U Learn’ is a convenient, easy, interest-free payment plan developed to make major MIND courses more accessible to individuals who may have difficulties paying fees. The main features of the plan include depositing as little as 30 per cent of the course fee, and paying the balance in monthly or fortnightly installments.
“MIND Mandeville has seen an increase in the number of participants, by approximately 150 per cent, between March 2000 to 2001 and 2003 to 2004,” Mrs. Robinson indicates.
The level of increase in the number of students speaks to the quality of education and service being offered at the institution despite its small staff complement of six persons.
MIND Mandeville also now boasts a new computer lab. “We got some Dell computers and we’ve been making good use of them,” Mrs. Robinson notes. In addition to the computer lab, the institution has an Internet caf