AL MAKTOUM SCHOOL OF MANAGEMENT EXCELLENCE
Wherever you go in the world, the buzzword is education. Nowhere though, is it more critical than it is in Africa, and nowhere is it appreciated more than at Summerhill.
Well over two decades ago, we embarked on our programme of upliftment of our people, and we see the benefits every day of our working lives. For some time there have been three learning institutions at Summerhill. A crèche, a preparatory school, and a life skills mentoring class. The mentoring class has seen the award of 40 overseas scholarships to people who’d never ventured too far from the boundaries of Mooi River in their lives. These are the “home runs” that get us up in the mornings.
And that’s what prompted the development of our School of Management Excellence. It honours the contribution to the South African sport of racing in general, and to the people of Summerhill in particular, of the Gainsborough Stud of the late Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Maktoum al Maktoum. As the first institution of its kind in the southern hemisphere, its erection fills a void in the needs of an industry involving billions of dollars in investment, but woefully short on the educational opportunities this facility delivers.
Now the reality it always promised to be, in its final manifestation, the School has exceeded our highest expectations. There simply is no other facility quite like it, anywhere.
The forty seater lecture theatre is equipped to connect students with the world, and has all the technological aids you would expect to find in the best universities. Alongside, the grooms’ convention centre has a capacity for 150 people, and its fold-away doors and windows reveal a series of cascading lakes and vistas over one of the most celebrated racehorse nurseries in the world.
The chill of winter is offset by underfloor heating throughout, while the stone- under-thatch buildings guarantee coolness in summer.
The curriculum is intended to propel graduates directly into management roles through a range of subjects designed by experts for the strategic, practical and financial demands of a sophisticated horse breeding business.
Our lecturers include highly placed academics, veterinarians, trainers, nutritionists, bloodstockers, and some of the outstanding stud managers of their era, as well as insights from leading industry personalities.
Financial and administrative instruction is provided by suitably qualified persons and a professor of business, while the School is housed at the home of thoroughbred marketing.