Studying for Success
Scholars Education Centre franchisee Abrar Hussain devotes himself to creating lifelong learners
When Abrar Hussain went looking for a franchise, his aim was focused on finding a business that was not only profitable but meaningful. He was also interested in a franchise that was home grown in Canada, and still growing. Scholars Education Centre fit the bill on all four fronts. Hussain wanted something where the brand would be important, but where his own personality could shine through as an individual franchisee in his community. Fast forward three years and Hussain is happily the face of his franchise, interacting with students, organizing teachers and meeting with parents.
After considering some other education franchises, Hussain signed on with Scholars Education Centre in October 2012, claiming the territory of Mississauga. He calls the training “a pretty extensive process,” requiring two weeks at the franchise’s head office and then a week with two head office staff at his location. Follow-up support has included semi-annual conferences, monthly phone meetings, marketing plan development, quality control inspections and regular visits from head office support staff.
It’s that overall program that Hussain says he believes makes the Scholars franchise stand out. Hussain relied heartily on a unique factor of the Scholars franchise system: the focus on the overall student and building his or her skill set. While a parent typically comes in with a specific problem or subject where the student is struggling, Hussain says Scholars takes the time to explore the roots of the difficulty. “We evaluate the student and develop a program. It’s not just a parent telling us ‘my son or daughter has a problem in math’ and that’s all we are addressing. We want to make sure that we are providing a much higher level of service with respect to being their consultant, being partners in their children’s education,” says Hussain.
Of course, Hussain says he could not meet such lofty goals without the help of some fantastic teachers. Despite his passion for education, Hussain comes from the corporate world (he has an MBA) and does not have a teaching background. He says prospective franchisees don’t need the teaching background as long as they hire great people. “I’ve got a great team of teachers. In our franchise model the programs are very well prepared for the teaching staff and tailored to each student. My education coordinator takes care of making sure that the lesson plans are prepared for the teachers and individualized to each student so that the teachers are not inundated by having to prepare the lesson plans on the fly,” says Hussain.
In terms of his own typical day as a franchisee, Hussain says there is a lot of variety but that his schedule regularly includes such activities as meeting with parents and teachers, working on marketing and reaching out to the school system.
Overall, Hussain has found a great fit for someone truly keen on helping kids become lifelong learners. “I take pride in changing lives and in making sure that children enjoy education and turning them into learners for life. That’s how I differentiate. This is what we do. I truly, truly respect the investment that the parents are making. My quest is to give back two, three hundred times the value.”