GDF officers to benefit from academic training

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Some 40 officers will be the first to benefit from the enhanced standard officers’ course which will now have a general academic component from the University of Guyana.

Chief of Staff of the Guyana Defence Force (GDF), Brigadier Patrick West and the Vice Chancellor of UG, Professor Ivelaw Griffith on Thursday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the University to offer enhanced training to potential officers undergoing training on the Standard Officers’ Course Number 50.

UG’s Principle Academic Engagement Officer, Sharon Roopchand-Edwards explained that the GDF officers will benefit from general studies focused primarily on enhancing their leadership and decision making skills.

“The development of the programme is based on what the army felt was critical for a rounded officer … it makes the officer more rounded when they move up in ranks so they can be thrown into roles of leadership and decision making at an earlier stage,” she explained.

The Chief of Staff said the enhanced programme will produce more rounded and educated officers who are prepared to fulfil his role in promoting the national defence.

“We see this officer not only being involved in a horizontal relationship between Defence Force, Militia and police but also vertically at the central and regional levels in Guyana,” he stated.

According to Professor Griffith, the programme will also better equip GDF ranks for their post-retirement journey.

“There are so many opportunities for gainful employment, for utilization of the capabilities and skills…How might we enable them to move to the next level, earning appropriately, ulitising their skills and talents appropriately by giving them some economic platforms that may be used,” he said.

According to the arrangements, GDF ranks will not physically attend UG but rather, the lecturers from the University will come to them. The programme will cover the credits of a two-year diploma.

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