Nottingham Business School (NBS) is expanding its Alumni Fellowship Scheme and inviting new members after a successful pilot year which saw the next generation of executives receive personalised support and advice from experienced business professionals.
The pilot NBS Alumni Fellowship Scheme involved 33 alumni from a range of organisations, including East Midlands Ambulance Service, the European Space Agency in Paris, Waitrose, Rolls Royce plc and Lloyds banking Group.
They each gave two days-worth of time to undertake a range of activities personalised to students’ interests and career ambitions, including student mentoring, giving guest lectures, sitting on interview panels and offering company visits and shadowing opportunities.
The success of the first year has led to the full introduction of the project and the expansion to approximately 150 Fellows for the next academic year 2015/16 – almost 100 applications have already been received.
NBS Alumni Fellows also contribute to Nottingham Business School’s course enhancement boards, which review all courses to ensure they are aligned with business requirements, and are involved in Nottingham Trent University’s Acceler8 employability award, through which students undertake work experience in addition to their degree. They also work with academic staff to ensure that research is relevant and coherent to the business world.
Alumni Fellows have access to the University’s online and City library resources, priority invitations to Nottingham Business School events, discounts on programmes and access to networking events. Dean of Nottingham Business School, Professor Baback Yazdani said: “We’re expanding this scheme to further personalise the student learning experience at NBS. We’re matching up the invaluable experience and knowledge of our alumni with the aspirations of our students, so they receive advice which is tailored to them.
“The time our Fellows give to support our students is invaluable to create the business executives of the future and to ensure our academic staff stay fully-connected to the needs of industry.” Topher Batchelor, director of creative video production firm, Fat Free Media, said: “I was delighted to be invited to the position of Alumni Fellow last year, and I have really enjoyed every opportunity I have had to be involved. I am proud to be an alumni of Nottingham Trent University, and to have a chance to give back to the next generation of students has been rewarding, engaging, and excellent for my own personal development. Part of the appeal of the programme was the flexibility to suit individual Fellows, which has meant I can focus on giving my time to areas of interest or where I feel my experience would be best spent. “One of the activities I have enjoyed most is the mentoring programme. It is a great opportunity for me to experience the infectious enthusiasm and energy that current students have, and also their determination and readiness to push on for the future. It’s also been a great first-hand demonstration of the skills and knowledge that Nottingham Trent University students possess; another great way to keep me on my toes and in touch with latest trends, particularly in marketing and digital. I would thoroughly recommend the programme to anyone.”
Michael Burnett, BA (Hons) Business student, said: “I have enjoyed being part of the mentoring scheme this year, my mentor has helped me to find a balance between my extra curricula activities and academic study, whilst furthering my knowledge of the opportunities available after I leave Nottingham Business School.”
The scheme accepts applications from any Nottingham Trent University alumni who are working in a business related role, but they must have graduated at least two years ago and have industry experience. The deadline for applications is 31 July 2015 and a welcome event will be held on 10 September 2015.