Anthony Ramtulla inspires his students to go beyond ordinary.
According to 2016 graduate of The Bahamas Technical and Vocational Institute (BTVI), Gerrard Russell, the information technology (IT) instructor helped to awaken the sleeping giant within him.
“He kicked me into gear. He motivated me to be better than average. I have never met anyone like him. At BTVI, it’s not the old desk and book system. It’s more of an exploration of learning,” said the young man, who is now a student at Fanshawe College in Canada.
Current IT management student Dion Mackey agrees, saying Mr Ramtulla has made the classroom environment conducive to learning.
“His teaching method is different. Instead of giving us the fish, he teaches us to fish. He would give us the basic concept and then an assignment. That caused us to think critically. He challenged us. He didn’t spoon feed us,” said Dion.
Mr Ramtulla played an integral role in Dion spending two semesters at Fanshawe College as an exchange student on an Emerging Leaders in Americas Program (ELAP) scholarship. He has since returned to BTVI to complete his degree.
“That Internet Web Foundations class I took with Mr Ramtulla prepared me for the basic programming class at Fanshawe. I was one of the best students in that class at Fanshawe. Mr Ramtulla makes me look at things from a critical eye,” said Dion.
In May, Mr Ramtulla was awarded for being a model of excellence. BTVI’s president, Dr Robert W. Robertson, bestowed upon him the 2016-2017 Faculty Excellence Award. Dr Robertson said Mr Ramtulla typifies the instructor/mentor model. The outstanding instructor also received a student evaluation average of 90 percent.
Infact, if anyone ever walked into a class taught by Mr Ramtulla, one of the noticeable things is the energy he exudes. He knows his subject well and is passionate about it.
Baha Mar’s Service Desk Technician Level 1, Mystique Stevenson, credits Mr Ramtulla for helping her solve IT issues even to this day.
“He embedded in us to keep it simple. That by far has been the one thing that has helped me a lot with troubleshooting problems that I come across in my work,” said the 2016 IT Management graduate, who also received her CompTia Network+ and CompTia A+ certifications while at BTVI.
“You could ask him anything IT related and he would give you a sensible answer. He has such vast knowledge in his field,” stated Mystique.
Mr Ramtulla’s knowledge landed him as a presenter at the international Global Universities in Distance Education (GUIDE) Conference held this past February in Florida. The conference was jointly organized by the GUIDE Association and the University of Phoenix, Central Florida. His research paper was on the Impact and Potential of Online Training on Technical and Vocational (Career) Education in The Bahamas.
Mr Ramtulla has been in The Bahamas for 18 years, having taught at BTVI for the past 11 years. However, his teaching background goes back 20 years ago when he was a post graduate student at the University of the West Indies in Jamaica. He taught A Level Physics and landed the position as Head of Department at the age of 21.
During his tenure thus far at BTVI, Mr Ramtulla has busied himself in ensuring he churns out the best and brightest in the IT field. He is leading BTVI in maintaining and expanding international IT certifications in Microsoft and Cisco.
“I have a very simple philosophy,” said the no-nonsense instructor. ‘If you come here and you’re trying, we will do our best to support you and prop you up. Have an inquisitive mind and we will try to get you there. We don’t waste time.”
Questioned as to what continues to motivate him to come to BTVI every day, he is quick to answer: “The challenge. The excitement. The new things. If you enjoy what you do, you never work another day in your life.”
“Gain An Edge” is a weekly collaboration of the Lyford Cay Foundations, Bahamas Technical and Vocational Institute and University of The Bahamas aimed at promoting a national dialogue on higher education. To share your thoughts, email firstname.lastname@example.org.