Aus­tralia’s New­est MBA Path­way

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One man who knows all about in­creas­ingly busy life­styles and the chal­lenges they pose to on­go­ing ed­u­ca­tion is Adam Wadi, founder and CEO of Get Qual­i­fied Aus­tralia, the coun­try’s lead­ing provider of skills recog­ni­tion and RPL.

In fact, he is so ac­quainted with the world of fast tracked qual­i­fi­ca­tions that, hav­ing per­son­ally ex­pe­ri­enced the process him­self, he de­cided to build an en­tire busi­ness model around it.

“Pro­fes­sional Aus­tralians are so pre­oc­cu­pied with es­tab­lish­ing their work/life bal­ance, that achiev­ing their MBA be­comes some­thing they im­me­di­ately place on the back­burner,” Wadi says.

“What they don’t know is that it’s now pos­si­ble to lit­er­ally cut the cost, time and ef­fort of study­ing a lead­ing Aus­tralian MBA in half.”

The lit­tle known con­cept he refers to is Recog­ni­tion of Prior Learn­ing, or as it’s more com­monly known in the in­dus­try, RPL. Es­tab­lished by the Aus­tralian Govern­ment in the early 1990s, the ini­tia­tive works to for­mally recog­nise the ex­ist­ing skills and ex­pe­ri­ence of in­di­vid­u­als who have worked in their nom­i­nated pro­fes­sion for years.

The end re­sult? A na­tion­ally recog­nised qual­i­fi­ca­tion that en­ables its cus­tomers to save thou­sands of dol­lars and valu­able years of study.

Although it has ex­isted within the ed­u­ca­tion sec­tor for well over three decades, RPL has re­mained rel­a­tively un­heard of, a fact Wadi at­tributes to the lack of true in­dus­try fo­cus and mar­ket­ing af­forded to the ini­tia­tive. “Col­leges and univer­si­ties don’t pro­mote RPL be­cause, frankly, it’s not in their best com­mer­cial in­ter­ests. With­out hav­ing the spe­cial­ist knowl­edge and re­sources re­quired to prop­erly fa­cil­i­tate a full range of RPL ser­vices, they’d rather have stu­dents pay and un­dergo the full course. That’s sim­ply the truth of it.”

Wadi’s first brush with RPL oc­curred in 2005 when he de­cided to move from a ca­reer in the ho­tel in­dus­try to one in ed­u­ca­tion, util­is­ing RPL to achieve a qual­i­fi­ca­tion in Train­ing and As­sess­ment.

“I felt that RPL was such a ben­e­fi­cial con­cept, that I wanted all Aus­tralians to know about it.”

And that’s ex­actly what he did, launch­ing what would quickly be­come Aus­tralia’s largest RPL com­pany.

Now, in its fourth year of op­er­a­tion with over one hun­dred staff and 40 part­ner Regis­tered Train­ing Or­gan­i­sa­tions (RTOs), Get Qual­i­fied Aus­tralia of­fers skills recog­ni­tion for over 400 na­tion­ally recog­nised qual­i­fi­ca­tions across 29 dif­fer­ent in­dus­tries, with one of its flag­ship qual­i­fi­ca­tions be­ing the re­cently launched Ac­cel­er­ated MBA path­way.

“We un­der­stood the con­cerns se­nior ex­ec­u­tives and man­agers had when con­sid­er­ing an MBA, and there­fore de­cided to tar­get this group and offset the chal­lenges they face by of­fer­ing a truly unique MBA so­lu­tion, util­is­ing the RPL frame­work.”

In Jan­uary 2016, Get Qual­i­fied Aus­tralia launched its Ac­cel­er­ated MBA Path­way in part­ner­ship with the pres­ti­gious Aus­tralian In­sti­tute of Man­age­ment (AIM), pre­sent­ing a truly fast-tracked path­way that en­abled stu­dents to achieve max­i­mum unit ex­emp­tions to­wards their MBA dream, while also walk­ing away with two post­grad­u­ate qual­i­fi­ca­tions.

“I call it my sig­na­ture dish. It’s some­thing that I’m very proud of and have worked very hard to de­velop,” ex­plains Wadi. “There is sim­ply noth­ing like it in the mar­ket to­day.

“Most se­nior level man­agers and ex­ec­u­tives are al­ready com­pe­tent at the grad­u­ate cer­tifi­cate/diploma level, and they don’t even know it. They cer­tainly don’t have the for­mal cer­ti­fi­ca­tion to prove it, and that’s where we come in. By get­ting their skills and ex­pe­ri­ence recog­nised through RPL, they can at­tain their Grad­u­ate Diploma in Strate­gic Lead­er­ship in as lit­tle as one month, and then use this qual­i­fi­ca­tion to seek a guar­an­teed ex­emp­tion of up to 6 units of their 12 unit MBA with AIM.”

Yet as Wadi states, this is only one third of the to­tal ben­e­fit.

“Get­ting an ex­emp­tion on half of your units means that you au­to­mat­i­cally save half the cost and ef­fort of study­ing your MBA.”

The av­er­age (me­dian) cost of un­der­tak­ing an MBA in 2016 is ap­prox­i­mately $45,000. While this price can range from any­where be­tween $22,000 and $82,000, the vast ma­jor­ity of providers charge around $30,000 over 1.5 to 2 years of study.

“The Ac­cel­er­ated MBA Pro­gram al­lows you to save, at the very least, $15,000 on your MBA fees, while tak­ing an amaz­ing 6 units worth of study off your plate,” ex­plains Wadi. This, he says, presents a truly achiev­able way for crit­i­cally time-poor pro­fes­sion­als to com­plete the re­main­ing 6 units of their MBA in their own time and at their own pace.

To date, Get Qual­i­fied Aus­tralia has helped qual­ify over 10,000 Aus­tralians, and Wadi is cer­tain that this num­ber will only con­tinue to grow. “There are so many skilled and ex­pe­ri­enced peo­ple out there who are el­i­gi­ble for a qual­i­fi­ca­tion and don’t re­alise it.”

It is for this rea­son that Wadi says he is mo­ti­vated day in, day out to make RPL his pas­sion and work, his num­ber one hobby.

“It’s no longer work for me. It’s some­thing I en­joy do­ing be­cause I get to see the ways in which peo­ple ben­e­fit from it ev­ery day.”

And how is the fu­ture look­ing? “Bright. Very bright, and I can’t wait to help an in­creas­ing num­ber of pro­fes­sion­als ac­cess the same op­por­tu­ni­ties thou­sands of oth­ers have in fast-track­ing their stud­ies with this rev­o­lu­tionised MBA”.

To find out more about GQA and its Ac­cel­er­ated MBA Path­way visit: www.gqaus­­track-your-mba

Adam Wadl

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