“The independent study required a lot of hard work but at the same time was a very satisfying finale to the degree. I was fortunate that I received a great deal of support from both the University and from all of the people who kindly helped me with industry knowledge and interviews”
– Neil Allen
Neil Allen is 47 and studied BA (Hons) Business Studies. He won the Toyota Award for best BA (Hons) Business Studies Independent Study in 2010.
Prior to commencing the course at Derby, I was already acting as supply chain manager for Bulwell Precision Engineers (a local SME), providing high precision parts for the aerospace sector.
Although already qualified as an engineer I had no real formal business training, I therefore, took full advantage when my employer offered to fund the BA (Hons) degree. Almost immediately, I (and hopefully my employer!) saw the benefits as I identified and also implemented knowledge and theories obtained from the course within my role in context.
In the future I aim to continue to use what I've learned from the course to further improve my area of the business in general and I am currently debating pursuing studying further, perhaps to masters level.
Why Derby University?
Initially I chose to study at Derby because it was so close to home. I also needed to fit my studying around both work and home commitments and so the flexibility offered by Derby to study part time was very appealing.
Prior to the course, I had studied a foundation degree in Lean Manufacture facilitated by West Nottinghamshire College. I was able to top this up to a full degree and it also provided a good base to build upon for the business degree.
Would I recommend Derby?
I would highly recommend Derby, it's a superb university. I made some good friends along the way, I found the lecturers extremely helpful, and encouraging. For the mature part time student who has been out of higher education for a time it is a brilliant place to learn.
Winning the Toyota Award
The independent study required a lot of hard work but at the same time was a very satisfying finale to the degree. I was fortunate that I received a great deal of support from both the University and from all of the people who kindly helped me with industry knowledge and interviews.
Winning the Toyota Award for the best Independent Study was literally the icing on the cake for me. It's made the many hours (mostly late nights!) and hard work seem worthwhile and would have been impossible without the support of my dissertation mentor Nick Turner, who I thank again for his patience, guidance and support.