Our commencement, at Elbert Covell College, took place in May 1972. As in all graduation ceremonies, we basically were a bunch of young fellows, girls and boys, from different backgrounds of the Americas and Spain, anxious to leave college and start a new life, particularly, in the Western Hemisphere. Little did we know, then, how much we would all miss our beloved school, our Inter-American Studies Program, our peers, professors, and above all that wonderful sense of importance, confidence and trust which we felt while attending classes and living at the University of the Pacific. This, of course, in addition to the magnificent and totally bilingual, and multi-cultural, education atmosphere we all shared during our classes and in our living quarters. The Inter-American Studies Program offered by Elbert Covell College, at the University of the Pacific, was, to me, the most complete, all-around, versatile educational program in which I had the privilege of participating in. ECC did not only contribute in my preparation as an economist and a business administrator, but it also gave me the most unique and complete opportunity for living and learning from peers whose countries, culture and ways of life were much different from mine. Now, Elbert Covell College, after 22 years of “official termination” continues supplying me with the love and affection -and a possible net of potential associates for developing initiatives- composed by over 600 hundreds graduates and so many additional peers who, although did not officially graduate from the program, are still Covelianos who fully share identical knowledge about the Americas, and share a similar set of values, and their entire Families, throughout the Americas and Spain.
After graduating in ECC, I continued graduate studies in the United States until June 1974. I went back to my home town, Ciudad Guayana, in Venezuela, and met my soon-to-be wife, Beverley Giusti-Honig. We married after three months of being introduced and, so far, we have grown up a 35 year old Family which started with the both of us and our three children: Charlotte Suzanne, MBA Magna Cum-Laude, 1975 (Charlotte works in Finance for Conoco-Phillips out of its Headquarters in Houston); Armando Augusto (Dentist), 1979 (Armando works in general practice and teaches clinic at the Universidad Gran Mariscal de Ayacucho in Puerto La Cruz, Venezuela; and Carol Smyrna who is completing her degree in Engineering student, 1981. They are all married now and have given us, also so far, six grand children to enjoy: Jeffrey Albert, Zackary Michael and Andrew Robert Mayhew-Yánez, born in Texas; Manuel Alberto and Lorenzo Asdrubal Ferrer-Yánez, born in Venezuela; and Beverley Milena Yánez-Coello, born in Florida. In 1979, while Beverley completed her B.S. in Engineering, I obtained my Ph.D. in Management from CWU.
Before becoming an entrepreneur, in October of 1981 (President of Promotora Empresarial y de Inversiones, S.A. - PREMISA (www.premisa.net), I had the opportunity of working for different private and state owned corporations, in Venezuela and in the United States where I held managerial and advisory positions. Since then, I have participated in a myriad of initiatives intended not only for developing business ventures, but, also, more importantly to me, for expanding human productivity and social progress as well. In the academic field I also fulfilled some activities as Director of the Banking Education Institute of Venezuela (INSBANCA) for programs in Guayana Region and became a member of the Board of Trustees of the Polytechnic University Institute of Guayana and Director of the Foundation of Development and Culture (FUNDEC). Currently, I share professional time with PREMISA’s Group of Companies, the Fundación Armando Yánez Caicedo de Arte y Cultura (FUNDAYC) and various other independent, international, clients who, just like all of us -Covelianos- enjoy the results of the excellent education we all received during our wonderful years learning from the Interamerican Studies Program offered by Elbert Covell College, in the University of the Pacific.