A businessman calls for hiring qualified people without a degree
Stating that many people without a degree are “extremely skilled,” Amber Group Founder and Managing Director Dushyant Savadia said it was time for the private and public sectors in Jamaica to refrain from hiring only people with the required university or college diplomas.
“Now is the time to focus on human capital. In my opinion, skills are not equivalent to diplomas and diplomas are not equivalent to skills…” said Savadia.
He was speaking at the graduation ceremony for the first cohort of 25 interns from the Amber HEART Institute of Coding at the AC Marriot Hotel in New Kingston last week.
Graduates earned level four certification in coding through the program.
While stating that the world has changed and people without a higher degree have made valuable contributions to society and business, Savadia revealed that he also doesn’t have a degree, “because I haven’t even graduated, and I hope you know that I was expelled by my parents when I was 19, because I was a drug addict, alcoholic and chain smoker.”
While acknowledging that “people with formal degrees continue to lead the way in society,” the businessman said now is the time for Jamaican entities to “take the plunge” to employ people because they “are skilled and not… because they don’t have the relevant degree that your company or public sector is looking for.
“I’m very frank today,” he said.
Using the coding program graduates as an example, Savadia shared that they are now some of the best coders on the island, and they have created a number of apps that aim to solve a multiplicity of problems in the country.
But he said the students didn’t just benefit from coding skills.
“…They were also trained through the workshops of the Art of Living Foundation, which is one of the largest non-profit organizations in the world and has impacted 800 million people globally in 153 countries, to focus on integrity, human values, compassion and keep the spirit of serving society,” Savadia said.
The first group of graduates were immersed in an intensive six-month program taught by a team of highly skilled master coders from the Amber Group, followed by a six-month internship program, in which they developed software programs alongside senior developers.
Successful graduates are now NCTVET certified and have guaranteed job offers with Amber Group, Digicel and the National Commercial Bank.