New and prospective students gathered at a MSc Business Management evening last month to promote the benefits of studying the master’s degree as well as the course’s exciting residential programme. The event featured talks from Business Management alumni who have since gone on to have success in a variety of businesses.
Programme Director Owen Leeds explained: “The scheme takes place over a long weekend at the start of your time with us, engaging in outdoor management development activities…we get students all from over 30 countries, ranging from A to Z; Austria to Zimbabwe.”
The residential course was first introduced in 2005 as a three-day event held in the Lake District. The scheme is designed to have many benefits, including honing personal development and leadership skills. Part of the programme involves a scenario where attendees are tasked to run a business for 24 hours. The residential provides a safe environment to explore business ideas, interact with other students from a wide variety of backgrounds and lead a team with ultimately no negative consequences.
Former overseas student Opeoluwa Banjoko, who has gone on to set up and pastor at The Church in Preston for the past eight years, said: “One of the things I really did enjoy about the course was the residential... coming from Nigeria, I wasn’t used to the environment (of the Lake Distract), but the three day residential did teach us a lot.” He also added: “There is never a dull moment in this class.”
David McStay, who originally studied sports psychology later graduated with his MSc in Business Management in 2007, now works for Yorkshire Building Society. He said that the course had given him “the confidence to apply for roles within larger organisations.”
James French who became Chief Executive of AFC Fylde at 26 explained that the reason he joined the took up studying a Master’s in Business Management is because he wanted to establish unique selling point for himself. “The moment I graduated was in the midst of recession. The way I could set myself was to undertake a master's,” he said.
Another speaker, Dawood Fard, set up his own business Centurus One following a trip to India after graduating. Dawood spent sixth months exploring the international education sector and how overseas students come to the UK. He labelled the application process for students as ‘chaotic’. When he arrived back to Preston he worked with UCLan and the Northern Lights start-up programme to secure investment. Four years later Centurus now works with 200 universities processing thousands upon thousands (and growing) of student applications coming into university and colleges. Dawood has won many awards, including Best Digital Enterprise at the 2014 Enterprise Awards. He continues to work with and employ students.
“In terms of the USP for this master’s course was because of the residential. The residential gave us the opportunity and a safe environment to try different leadership management styles and really hone your skills before going out in the real world.”
Chris Farnworth, an associate at Deloitte in the real estate sector said: “When you study a master’s in business it really is credible on your CV. The residential was one of the key moments on the course. I met some great people on the course and you really get to know them. You get to learn your own personality and what you like and how you act. You get to learn how you interact with other personalities.”
After the talks students then had the opportunity to network with the alumni and make important contacts for themselves. Career opportunities were also available, as many of the speakers are all actively involved in recruitment.
Speaking after the event, Dean of Lancashire Business School Dharma Kovvuri said: “I endorse the team leadership and personal professional development programme. The personal development is a really strong part of the course.”
The MSc Business Management evening will continue as an annual event.