Sheffield: at the sharp edge of management education

Professor David OglethorpeAs we begin a new semester, it’s very refreshing for me to be back in Sheffield after a period of overseas travel. The last three weeks saw me in Japan, developing a new research partnership with another prestigious University and in both Hungary and the USA at annual Dean’s conferences for two of our major accrediting bodies, EQUIS and AACSB. It’s useful to be at these events to see what’s going on in the business and management schools around the world and to look at good practice at the other schools ranked alongside us in the top one per cent globally.

I’m reassured from these trips that the things we are doing at Sheffield remain at the sharpest cutting edge. The focus of our research into socially-responsible and sustainable business practice is still leading the way and many of our international peer schools are yet to catch up. The impact of our research and the curriculum we study are amongst the most relevant and exciting in the world. The quality of our students and staff are clearly representative of a leading international school and I know that transformational futures are being created.

Studying at any level, whether it’s your first undergraduate degree after A-levels or a PhD in later life, will transform your future. It’s wonderful to hear what our graduates plan to do, and I hear many compelling stories from our MBA students.

With entrepreneurship, leadership and consultancy at the heart of the programme and an enthusiastic new director, Dr Vasilios Theoharakis, at the helm, an energetic, engaging and ambitious cohort emerges. The transformative effect of this intensive period of study is remarkable, which is why I’ve introduced a series of scholarships connected with the MBA – the Dean’s Awards. Click here to read more about these ten awards.

We were also delighted to hear that CEO Magazine has ranked our MBA in the top tier in Europe. They have acknowledged the programme’s practical, organisation-focused features which make it unique.

Students at every level in the Management School have practical, hands-on skills built into their programme and the latest Achieve More challenge demonstrated that our academic staff do a fantastic job of embedding these in tasks. Teams of first-year undergraduates were placed into interdisciplinary groups and asked to find a solution to a number of societal problems. A group looking at flood risk, led by Dr Tina McGuinness, received an honourable mention from the judges while Dr Christine Sprigg’s group which addressed the topic of cyberbullying clinched the top prize in the Citizenship category.

This module encourages our students to test their research and creative skills, and the high performance from Management-led teams is testament to Tina and Christine’s leadership.

While we spend a great deal of time addressing students and passing on knowledge, it is the time of year where final year undergraduates students have the opportunity to feed back on their time at the Management School. Completing the National Student Survey is important because it leads to changes and improvements around vital matters such as feedback and facilities.

If you’re a final year undergraduate student, it only takes ten minutes of your time and there are a number of incentives – click here to find out more.

I wish you every success throughout semester 2 and look forward to seeing how your futures are transformed as we move through another academic year.

Professor David Oglethorpe