University College of the Caribbean was answering he call for increased access to higher education in the corporate and rural areas of Jamaica. The university is a self-supporting, higher education institution. USC has grown to become one of the recognized private higher education institutions in Jamaica, having gained recognition from the local accrediting body, the University Council of Jamaica (JUJU) and full matriculation status from the University of the West Indies. The university offers Associate and Bachelor's Degrees in several faculties such as Business Administration, Human Resources and Marketing programmer.

USC continues to grow, they recently formed alliances with the Florida International university (Flub based in Miami in 1998 introducing the Executive Masters in Business Administration Programmer (weekend). The first Flu cohort consisted of an unprecedented 78 students recruited from corporate Jamaica, as well as the wider populace. The FIB MBA Degree Programmer, shortly after its introduction, gained great momentum and another large cohort was added within a year, and a third in September 2001. In 2000, a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration (weekend) with the University of North Florida was added.

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Again responding to the demands of the Jamaican market, this undergraduate programmer was Introduced to satisfy the needs of eligible mild-level working adults In the business sector. SIX months later, another Bachelor's Degree In Hospitality Management was established In Montage Bay In conjunction with the highly reputable Flu School of Hospitality Management. Since launched the Distance Education and Global Learning initiative. In 2006, USC accomplished a dramatic growth in its course offerings expanding to fifteen professional diploma and certificate programmer, six Associate of Science Degree

Programmer, seventeen indigenous and two overseas Bachelor of Science and Arts programmer. At the Masters level USC offers 7 Master of Science Degrees in conjunction with the Florida International University and the University of London. These programmer are designed to serve and meet the training needs of the entire spectrum of both public and private sector organizations throughout Jamaica. In order to satisfy the needs of qualified managers and other mid-professionals in computer information/technology sectors, the FIB Bachelor's in Computer Science Degree was also launched in Montage Bay and Kingston.

With the growing level of undergraduate and graduate level programmer in Jamaica, small and large corporations were beginning to express the need for shorter, in- house executive-type training programmer tailored to meet the needs of middle and senior executives. Some short courses and seminars, generally over two to three days, are being offered in response to specific corporate training needs. Some short courses are also being identified as upgrading or introductory level courses for some participants.

University College of the Caribbean is perceived as a fairly new university which has tot yet gained the recognition by many (including employers) as the other traditional universities namely; University of the West Indies and University of Technology. The applicants from the working class population have increased. This may be credited to the accreditation received, different courses offered and the fact that the university offers flexible class hours. While employees of companies have found it befitting to pursue higher education at USC, will employers recognize the graduates as they would of the traditional universities?

As such, the purpose of this research is: To determine how do impasses perceive graduates of the University College of the Caribbean in comparison to graduates from traditional universities in Jamaica. The objectives of this research are: ; To examine the selection process used by Chief Executive Officers and Managers at the strategic level, the decision makers, in choosing potential employees from among graduates of USC and other traditional universities such as the University of the West Indies, University of Technology, Northern Caribbean University and Micro University College. To determine if there is a preference for or against USC radiates in comparison to graduates from the abovementioned traditional universities amongst these employers. ; To identify the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities (SOOT) and threats of the performance/skills that USC graduates bring to the workforce, in comparison to graduates from the abovementioned traditional These objectives will be addressed using the following questions: 1 . What are the top work related qualities/skills that you look for in a new employee? 2.

What has been your experience working or being associated with USC graduates as it relates to those qualities/skills? 3. What is your company's session of a suggestion that when it comes to selecting potential employees from local university graduates, most top companies prefer to hire graduates from the III or TECH? 4. How would you rate USC graduates in terms of performance, knowledge and capability in comparison to graduates from the University of the West Indies and University of Technology? 5. Good work ethics is considered very important by all organizations.

How do you think USC graduates 'measure up' in terms of good work ethics? 6. Achieving the firm's objectives is critical. Do you believe USC graduates contribute meaningfully towards this goal? . Do you find that USC graduates are better at using their own initiative in performing their tasks effectively in comparison to their counterparts? Explain. Scope of the Research To successfully ascertain the level of recognition of USC as a traditional university and the performance of its graduates in the workplace, this study will utilize the necessary tools to meet the objectives of the research.

This research will be done over a one month period, where the Exploratory Research Design will be employed through interviews with Human Resource Managers and other relevant top management personnel of selected companies that are market leaders. Enough time will be allowed for gathering information from the busy HRS personnel who are willing to accommodate this analysis. Type of Study In order to address the questions posed, the study will employ exploratory research design format to collect data.

Exploratory research design allows data to be collected using informal procedures and the primary objective of using this research design is to provide insights into and an understanding of the target companies' perception of USC graduates. The research process will be flexible and unstructured and will insist of personal interviews with top level manager(s) responsible for the company's recruitment process. For this research, the sample is small and non-representative of the population and is selected to generate maximum insights to determine how these companies perceive graduates of USC in terms of performance.

The interview questions will be formulated to elicit qualitative responses, these responses will be organized in the same order the questions were presented. That is, all the responses to question 1 will be grouped together, followed by the responses to question 2, and so on. Data collection involves interviews aimed at exploring the selection practices of the management of the target companies. Data collection will be done on a five (5) days, eight (8) hours work week schedule, from Monday to Friday 8:MAMA to 5:PM. The interviews will be conducted in the following manner: ; Face-to-face ; Via telephone ; Interview schedule. Pick][Pick][Pick]The face-to-face interview will be done by setting an appointment to visit the company for an interaction with the interviewee's whilst administering the questions which will be recorded. This interview session will last for at minimum half hour. During this session, valuable insight will be gained by observing the mannerism of the interviewee's when the responses are given. The target companies that are unable to accommodate a face-to-face visit will be given the option of a telephone interview or having an interview schedule delivered to them. Telephone interviews: The Researcher will conduct a half hour semi-structured interview with the human resource manager or his/her designate. ; Interview schedule: The questions will be presented in a schedule format and will be sent to the human resource manager or his/her designate for the responses to be recorded on he schedule. A turnaround timeshare for the responses will be predetermined by the interviewee and agreed by the Researcher. The completed schedule will then be collected by the Researcher at the end of the turnaround time.

Analysis of the data After the completion of the depth interviews over the five days period, the Research Team will meet during the following week to collate the data in order to facilitate the commencement of the analysis process. The analysis will be conducted over a period of two (2) days by a four-member team headed by the Vice President/Research Analyst. The Multidimensional Scaling (MEDS) method will be used to analyses this data, in particular the metronomic MEDS procedure. This is an analysis method used when the input data obtained from the respondents are related to perceptions, or preferences.

Report Preparation and Presentation The entire research project will be summarized in a single written report and making future decisions at the strategic level. The report will include the following: ; Title page ; Table of contents ; List of appendices ; Executive summary ; Problem definition ; Approach to the problem ; Research design ; Data analysis Results ; Limitations and caveats ; Conclusions and recommendations ; Exhibits Before writing the report, however, the research team will meet with the decision makers of USC to discuss the major findings, conclusions and recommendations.

This is to ensure that the report meets Sac's needs and that it is ultimately accepted. An oral presentation will supplement the written report. Definition of Target Population and Sample Plan The aim of this study is to determine how USC graduates are perceived by employers in comparison to graduates from traditional universities, while establishing the ramekin in which USC will be able to tailor its programmer in keeping with regional expectations of the Job market.

For this study USC will be compared to traditional universities such as: The University of the West Indies (III), University of Technology (TECH), Northern Caribbean University (NICE) and Micro University College. The target population for this study will be decision makers/managers at the strategic level responsible for recruiting, hiring, evaluating and terminating employees. The interviewees will comprise of Chief Executive Officers, Human Resources Managers, Departmental Managers/Directors and other top level managers.

Managers at the strategic level often possess top credentials, are well experienced, reputable, and have strong influence within corporate and social circles, as many of these managers are often highlighted in the media. These decision makers will be from a random selection of twenty established, leading companies in Jamaica, today, which have been in existence for ten years, or more. Characteristics of the Target Audience 1. Managers at the strategic level are between the ages of 30 to 55 years. 2.

They are armorial graduates of a tertiary institution; those who studied locally are graduates of III and TECH with Bachelors and Masters Degrees in Business Administration, Marketing, Finance, Economics, and Human Resources Management. Their strong educational background has equipped them with the necessary skills to give an unbiased response. 3. Most of these Managers have worked in different areas and possess a wealth of expertise and knowledge which they would have accumulated during more than fifteen years experience.

Overtime, they have interacted with many employees who are university graduates. For instance, the Human Resource Manager would have been hiring university graduates for his/her company. 4. Many Managers at this level are board directors and members of social clubs, such as the Rotary, Kiwanis, Optimist Clubs and other community based groups. The following is a list of the twenty companies based on the aforementioned criteria. At minimum, ten of these companies will be targeted for the sample. These companies are: 1. GRACE KENNEDY LIMITED 2. DIGITAL 3.

NATIONAL COMMERCIAL BANK JAMAICA LIMITED 4. INDEPENDENT RADIO COMPANY LIMITED 5. P. A. BENJAMIN MANUFACTURING COMPANY LIMITED 6. JAMAICA BISCUIT COMPANY LIMITED 7. LASSO DISTRIBUTORS LIMITED 8. JAMAICA PEGASUS HOTEL 9. RESTAURANTS OF JAMAICA (KEF) 10. PEPSI-COLA JAMAICA BOTTLING COMPANY LIMITED 1 1 . JAMAICA BROILERS GROUP LIMITED 12. TOYOTA JAMAICA LIMITED 13. THE W,'MADAM HOTEL 14. BUREAU OF STANDARDS, JAMAICA 15. COURTS JAMAICA LIMITED 16. JAMAICA MONEY MARKET BROKERS LIMITED 17. LIME 18. FACE COMMODITY COMPANY LIMITED 19. NESTLE JAMAICA LIMITED 20.

CHAOS E. RANSOM LIMITED There are numerous managerial advantages to be gained from conducting and completing this research, as this will provide information about the target audience, he competition, as well as the environment. The main goal is to gain understanding Some of the benefits to be had are: ; The formulation of effective marketing campaigns and activities that will communicate directly with current and potential customers. This will also assist management in getting informational insight on the factors that drive the demand for Sac's graduates. Market research helps identify opportunities and risks in doing business and helps the business to create markers to assist it in tracking its progress. This will aid USC in evaluating success. If however targets are not being met, the study could help o identify reasons so that the necessary corrective actions can be implemented. The research could aid USC in recognizing what adjustments are needed to its curriculum to equip the graduating cohorts with the necessary knowledge and practical skills that will provide them with a competitive advantage over the graduates of other traditional universities. Enable USC to enhance its offerings and services, thereby making it more lucrative and the preferred choice for potential students and employers. ; Identify the top work-related skills/qualities that employers seek, this information will be advantageous for future planning. Supply information on the various employers that will accept graduates based on whether or not the institution is accredited by the relevant organization. Provide an opportunity to identify accreditation bodies/organizations to which USC could be aligned and organizations that could assist USC in providing experience for its graduates. ; Assist with enhancing the public profile of USC, by virtue of this research in that the time vested by the target population for this research, is an indication that USC is serious about its product (that of enhancing the quality of its graduates) and wants to attics the needs of Jamaican employers. This additional exposure, would add value and increase shareholders' wealth.

Proposed Cost for the Research Project The estimated budget to complete this research is as follows: I Project Details I Amount Agency Request | 250,000 130,000 | 1 o,oho 1120,oho | 600,000 | 80,000 I Consultants I I Travel I Equipment I Materials and Supplies I Printing and copying I Analysis and Report Writing I Miscellaneous Costs I I Total Travel The project will need $250,000 for traveling by the researcher to collect the data for the interviews. Materials and supplies Total request of $100,000 is based on estimated of $30,000 for consumable supplies, $70,000 for sample analysis.

Consultant service (2. 5 million) This involves the interpretation of information collected by the research team over a 3 months period. Printing and binding $120,000. Constitute the various aspect of putting the final project together. Principal Researcher's Profile Background Madison Market Researchers Limited is an international marketing research agency which has provided research consulting services to over fifty thousand (50,000) impasses during the last twenty-five (25) years.

The company's headquarters is based in New York with two branches in the Caribbean and Europe. These branches are Madison Researchers CA) Limited in Kingston, Jamaica and Madison Researchers (I-J) Limited located in London, England. No other company in the world approaches research like Madison Market Researchers Limited Group, where clients are treated like they are our only client. At Madison, our entire team focuses on each client's specific issue before it's committed too research project, because we believe in giving superior value.

All our projects are custom designed on a cooperative basis with the client, to address marketing and strategic planning issues and are conducted in an ethical manner. We guarantee reliable results, yielding firm guidance and direction for future planning and decision making, which have given birth to some of the few fortune 500 companies today. To ensure quality control, all phases of our marketing research studies are conducted on an internal basis. Madison Researchers Limited does not subcontract data collection, analysis, statistical analysis and preparation of projects. Research Team

The research team at Madison Researchers CA) Limited, which is based in Kingston, Jamaica, will be conducting this research. This team comprises of six marketing research executives with over forty (40) years experience, who are highly educated and dedicated to marketing research as a discipline. For this team research, is its Research Versatility Our approach is a combination of multiple methodologies, in that our team utilizes a variety of marketing research collection approaches when conducting projects for its clients. These include quantitative and qualitative research methods.

Our researchers are considered leaders in their individual discipline as they have conducted numerous research projects for some of the largest companies in the world including fortune 500 companies and consumer packaging products, hotel/ resorts, and retail banking et cetera, specializing in projects that are focused on providing customer satisfaction, service/product quality, market segmentation and general consumer attitudes and behavior patterns. Summary of Employee Status: Dry. Sandier Smelling - CEO and Chairman Education: PhD in Marketing Management Masters in Economic Statistics Dry.