AZERBAIJAN - Health & Education
Founder & Chairwoman, Kaspi Education
Sona Veliyeva was born in 1962 in Sharur District, Nakhichevan, Azerbaijan. Between 1980 and 1984 she studied at the Azerbaijan State Art Institute. Ms. Valiyeva started her career as a teacher in the Nakhichevan Musical College in 1987 where she worked until 1995. From 1995 to 1999 she was a correspondent at “SÉ™s“ newspaper, and between 1999 and 2007 worked as the head of Kaspi Newspaper. Since 2007 she has been a member of the National TV and Radio Council. Ms. Valiyeva is also the Founder and Chairwoman of Kaspi Education Center.
Private education plays a substantial role in the development of human resources and in the overall economic growth of developed countries. Kaspi Education strives to offer top-quality services to Azerbaijani citizens across various age groups. We are proud to serve over 4,000 citizens annually with language training, study abroad services, executive education, pre-school preparation, and the preparation of students for local university through centralized admission exams. The company’s central mission is to serve the nation by offering high-quality education services using innovative teaching methods.
The center was established in 2007 as a language training school offering private tutoring in various languages. The major aim of Kaspi Poliglot is to provide language training for university students, recent graduates, young professionals, and other people interested in learning foreign languages. In order to fulfill its objective of providing premium-quality services, the company has established strong partnerships with major UK-based language schools. Cooperation with esteemed education providers such as INTO, the London School of English, and English in Action has enabled the company to apply modern teaching methods in language training. As a result, interest in Kaspi Poliglot’s services from various private companies, government institutions, and the general public has rapidly increased. We are proud to have been involved in a number of major projects in Azerbaijan, including the provision of language training for 300 policemen as part of the official preparation for the Eurovision 2012 song contest. In addition, every year Kaspi Poliglot provides language training for 50 journalists in Azerbaijan with the financial support of Azercell. We also serve a number of corporate clients to enhance the language skills of their staff members. Within a short time frame, the founders of the center decided to expand the company’s activities by establishing services for preparation for higher education. The declining quality of teaching in Azerbaijan’s secondary schools has created serious problems for students in state-administered admission exams. Kaspi Abituriyent developed a special program that reviews the content of the secondary school curriculum, helping students to achieve high scores in state exams. The 94% university admission rate indicates the success of the Kaspi program. The principal methodologies applied include the continuous assessment of student achievements, close communication with parents, and internal competition among students through various contests and innovative strategies for taking exams. In 2013, two Kaspi Abituriyent alumni achieved the top scores in the country and received the Presidential Stipend, indicating the efficiency and effectiveness of our methodology. Within five years, we have assisted more than 1,000 students in gaining admission to Azerbaijan’s top universities. Kaspi Education Center supports various state programs by enhancing education opportunities for Azerbaijan’s youth. The government program for enhancing study abroad opportunities for Azerbaijani youth inspired us to launch a new branch of the business. Kaspi Global, which provides study abroad services for Kaspi Education Center, was established in 2009. Partnership with leading international universities has been the major priority of Kaspi Global since its inception. Kaspi Global was the first private education provider to organize the International Education Fair in Baku in November 2009. Since then, six such fairs have been organized. More than 15 educational institutions representing universities from the US, Australia, the UK, Switzerland, and other European countries took part in our first fair. Over 2,000 Azerbaijanis had the opportunity to find out about various study abroad programs offered by high-ranking universities. The University of Glasgow, University of Sheffield, University of Exeter, University of Newcastle, the University of East Anglia, and many other institutions are currently key partners of Kaspi Global. We assisted over 120 Azerbaijanis to gain admission to foreign universities. Moreover, the majority of Kaspi Global students also received government funding for their undergraduate and graduate programs. The most recent innovation of Kaspi Education Center is Kaspi KIDS, which is for pre-school age children. Kaspi KIDS aims to prepare pre-school age children for primary school by providing adequate training on general study and social skills, as well as reading, writing, mathematics, and foreign-language skills. Parents can also choose from a wide range of courses such as dance class, additional foreign languages, painting, chess, and gymnastics. Kaspi KIDS has a unique preparatory program designed to enhance children’s memory, logic, social, communication, and problem solving skills. We believe that pre-school preparation lays a solid foundation for personal development and facilitates further stages of education. Currently, we serve more than 600 children in Baku and Sumqayit, and we plan to expand our activities to other regions of Azerbaijan in the near future.
Accessibility and affordability are the key features of Kaspi’s services. To cover the suburbs of Baku, we operate in five different locations around the city. The current branches of the center are located in the Ahmadli Settlement, and the Khatai, Narimanov, Yasamal, and Sabunchi districts of Baku. Soon, two more branches will begin operations in Baku. The regional targets of the center include branches in Ganja, Sumgayit, Mingechevir, Lankaran, Shaki, and Guba. Prior to launching a new branch, we carefully research the local market and its needs, as providing services that are compatible with local needs is the trademark of our success. Customer care, communication with parents, the involvement of esteemed education experts in the development and improvement of the services, and strong media connections, as well as cooperation with state authorities help us to close the gaps identify, and provide high-quality education services. We also provide a number of merit-based scholarship opportunities for young people with special talents. Some Kaspi students are fully funded for tuition fees, while others receive partial scholarships for study at various levels. Finally, Kaspi Abituriyent offers monthly gold, silver, and bronze prizes for students with the highest performance indicators. We believe that creating a competitive environment in education is a key driver of success for students, as well as for the company.
Kaspi Education places great importance on the application of ICT in education and works to create and apply innovative electronic resources in learning. In 2013, Kaspi launched a nationwide online TV program dedicated to education services: www.oxu.tv. The online services provided by the site are free and accessible by any internet user. The main goal of the project is to provide video classes for the secondary school curriculum aimed at pupils in Azerbaijan. The video programs will cover all subjects between first and 11th grade of the secondary school program. The classes are taught by experienced and successful teachers awarded by the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Azerbaijan. So far, more than 300 video lessons on different school subjects have been prepared and provided for audience access. Students can watch classes missed due to illness, or else the videos can serve as a revision aid for difficult subjects. We also believe that the materials can help parents to understand the content of the curriculum and become involved with homework preparation. Finally, the site provides a distance-learning opportunity for students living in rural areas of the country, or those with physical disabilities. We believe that oxu.tv makes a significant contribution to Azerbaijan’s education community. Besides, in cooperation with the Diaspora Committee we have prepared a game-based online learning resource for young people aged from five to 10 years to learn the basics of the Azerbaijani language. What is more, Kaspi Education has prepared a Learning Management System (KaspiLMS) that enables any educational organization to manage the education process and possess regular control over the quality of the education provided. Kaspitest.com is another electronic source created by Kaspi that provides online mock exams for Abituriyents in a real regime. Kaspi Education Center has a very ambitious mission: to provide high-quality education services for every Azerbaijani citizen. We believe that education is not only about knowledge, but also values and culture, and is a key component of national development. Education is the major driving force of prosperity and positive change in society. Through the application of our innovative and modern methodology, we strongly believe that Kaspi Education will become one of the key agents of change in Azerbaijan.
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