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Shippers' Academy plays pivotal role

The Shippers' Academy Colombo (SAC) was set up in 2011, to enhance the skills and knowledge of the global commercial shipping environment by providing capacity building programs to large, medium and the SME sector, where affordability and creative techniques are used as tools to plug knowledge gaps and share knowledge.

Rohan Masakorala

The Shippers' Academy Colombo was one of the first of its kind to be set up in South Asia. Since its launch in 2011 the Academy, continues to play a pivotal role in the shipping industry locally as a training organisation which has developed short courses and conducted industry seminars in related fields.

Scope of work

The Shippers' Academy Colombo supports the rising demand for training from local and overseas companies. The academy is well-suited to meet the needs of shippers and shipping community who want to acquire new skills or further enhance their knowledge in the field of commerce, transport and logistics. Tailor-made courses for corporate clients is a key tool of the academy and it also offers consultancy services and undertakes shipper centric R and D to understand industry changes and requirements.

With the ever-changing demands the industry faces in the global platform, the Academy is designing courses to support the latest developments and sharpen the international competitive edge of local companies. The SAC is developing and delivering new curricular to increase professional courses related to global commerce, logistics, transportation and supply chain management.The Academy has developed a five-month 5S program and a three-month audit program for service companies and manufacturers, exporters and importers, to help increase productivity. An English language course has also been introduced along with new Customs; Port related training among other existing programs.

PPP and local talent

The Shippers' Academy Colombo has partnered with the Sri Lanka Foundation to introduce transport courses and also conducts classes at other government institutes on shipping and related subjects.

The Academy has introduced for the first time the prestigious Governor's Challenge Trophy quiz for global commerce and logistics and the global commerce excellence awards for the corporate sector along with the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) to build interest in the logistics, exports and commerce industry among employees and to uplift industry standards and image.

By joining the public sector, the Academy hopes to expand to other parts of the country and to popularise export, international transport and other global commercial activity among the youth as the demand for skilled persons in these fields are continuously increasing in Sri Lanka and in Asia.

The other unique feature is that the Academy has created a pool of faculty members from the private and public sectors to develop curricular that matches any international training organisation. While working with global and regional bodies to bring in and share the latest information and teaching methods, the home grown model has seen local talent uplifted in the subject areas.

Mode of delivery

The SAC is working on a model that encompasses best practices by working with independent industry experts and institutions to deliver and develop its academic courses, R and D and consultancy assignments. This will ensure that the best technology, information and data that are needed by the industry to be competitive, will be delivered. The Shippers' Academy has the resources to educate the industry and policy bodies in relation to regional and global commercial activities.

The future

The short courses, workshops, and seminars run by the academy give an opportunity to candidates to upgrade ongoing development, knowledge and engage in continuous education which is a modern feature in global commerce and logistics. China and US have many such institutions that build capacity by allowing the workforce to continuously upgrade knowledge and skills.

The Academy aims to giving alternative employment opportunities and support career guidance to students while supporting corporates to be more productive.

Sri Lanka's vision of being a regional hub will need more talent in the field of global commerce and logistics and the academy hopes to be in the forefront of meeting this need in the coming years.

 

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