By Ian Van Buren
Jamaicans wishing to pursue a business degree at a respected university will have to fight an uphill battle. Jamaica ranks 119th globally with an average GMAT score of 434 out of 800. The global average score is 498.50. Respected GMAT coach and founder of Versan Educational Services Sandra Bramwell blames the island’s poor English foundation for it’s low scores. The GMAT tests for Math and English, and even non-English speaking countries are scoring higher than Jamaica. It doesn’t end there. Regionally, Jamaica has a lower average score than Barbados (511), Trinidad (495), Guyana (457), and even the Spanish-speaking Dominican Republic (450).
It will be a difficult for the island turn scores around considering that their economy continues to struggle. The Jamaican dollar has hit a record low when last week it broke J$102 against the U.S. dollar. Although test scores are alarmingly low, Jamaica has produced some successful students like Jo-Anne Jackson-Stephens, who was accepted to Oxford University’s MBA program. Jackson-Stephens scored higher than 84% of individuals worldwide who took the GMAT. Another issue is attracting successful MBA graduates like Jackson-Stephens back to Jamaica. “I have opted to stay overseas because I think it is important for my professional growth as an attorney-at-law and aspiring entrepreneur to get international exposure. The crime and the economy in Jamaica are also factors,” she said. In order to turn the economy around, it’s no mistake that Jamaica must make a significant investment to fund it’s educational system so that it can return contributions in the form of economic growth. How the State will allocate its resources for such an investment is the real equation.
Read more: http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Not-good-for-business_14913252#ixzz2dBjqNBBF