As Coronavirus COVID-19 Spreads, UCC Offers Free Accounts to Companies in Jamaica and the Caribbean for Launching Online Corporate University Platform
The University of the Commonwealth Caribbean (UCC) Online commits to ensuring training continues during a time when concerned companies & students may have to call a halt to in-person training.
KINGSTON, Jamaica, March 12, 2020 - As the response to the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, continues to restrict travel and cancel major public events, one Caribbean private university is committed to ensuring that staff training and development continues. The University of the Commonwealth Caribbean (UCC), in partnership with leading Canadian eLearning company, Velsoft, is offering unrestricted access to its learning management system and training materials to support Jamaican and Caribbean companies to try to maintain normalcy as the world navigates the passage of the disease.
The university and workplace learning and development (L&D) industry has already been hit hard by the cancellation of face-to-face training. It is expected that COVID-19 will continue to spread throughout the Caribbean, causing havoc on travel or gatherings for public events. Companies are frantically establishing contingency plans but the coronavirus continues to move faster than their preparations.
“Many universities and training institutions have been transformed to online or virtual events to stem the spread of the contagious virus,” says Dr Winston Adams, Founder and Group Executive Chairman of the UCC Group of Companies. “However, not every organization knows where to start in providing virtual or distance training.” Adams and his UCC team, have created a plan to offer their robust cutting edge technologies to help companies move their corporate training online.
Working remotely has quickly become an accepted practice, with companies attempting to shield their staff from the epidemic. Many companies, such as Facebook, Microsoft, Amazon, Ford Motor, HSBC, AT&T, CNN, Citigroup and Twitter, have directed employees to work from home to reduce the risk of spreading the virus.
Jim Fitt, founder and CEO of Velsoft notes that only a relatively few organizations in the Caribbean currently offer online staff training, as many others have not yet embraced this model using technology. “All we are hoping for is to help get things back to normal as quickly as possible,” Fitt adds. “Cancelling or postponing training will have a lasting effect on companies already bracing for impacts likely to reverberate across corporations long after the outbreak is eventually brought under control.”
The UCC and its teams in Jamaica and Canada are committed to ensuring as much training as possible go uninterrupted, which is why free access to UCC’s Corporate University eLearning platforms is being offered to those wanting to train their teams remotely. Until the end of April 2020, companies can access all course authoring and learning management system software for free with no obligation whatsoever.
Additionally, individual Jamaicans will be able to access relevant free recorded video-based online courses taught by UCC’s international online faculty via the US based Udemy platform.
Jamaicans can log on to http://micon.myvcampus.com/ to start accessing these free professional development short courses. However, if a UCC certification is required at the end of each course, participants will be required to pay a small examination fee online.
The UCC believes the effect of COVID-19 on global higher education and corporate training is a predictor to a disruption about to happen to the $366.2 billion USD workplace L&D industry.
According to the University of the Commonwealth Caribbean’s President, Professor Dennis J. Gayle, the UCC is also paying very close attention to the teaching and learning formats implemented by other institutions of higher learning across the world. “As the number of people impacted by the coronavirus (COVID-19) grows at alarming rates, university students in affected areas face the prospect of losing an entire semester, or more. This is why starting on Sunday March 15th, the UCC is also moving all of its regular face-to-face degree level teaching and learning programs online, for the remainder of the current semester, and possibly also, for the forthcoming summer semester, using the UCC learning management system,” Professor Gayle noted.
Moving classes online is the number one way higher education institutions are responding to the COVID-19 outbreak.