During the last eight years we have focused on linking our courses to the employability of our graduates. The University of Aberdeen has published its Graduate Attributes and we have been working to incorporate them into our courses in a practical way.
One initiative we developed was in the Managing Organizational Change course which had previously been examined by written assignment and examination. We replaced the written assignment with a group presentation putting students into the role of a consultancy team seeking to explain to a group of senior managers the role that consultants can play in facilitating change in their organization. The presentations take 20 minutes and are followed by 10 minute’s questions by the invited guests. This year, apart from the two course tutors we had a representative from KPMG and one from PwC to give their comments and feedback.
Stimulating interest in consultancy in this way has led to several students applying successfully over the years for positions with consultancy firms. Last year two students were offered and accepted jobs with PwC and Ernst & Young. And now one of our students who graduated eight years ago and works for PwC as Graduate Recruitment Officer returns each year to give a guest lecture to the class.
We are looking forward to developing this course into a Masters in Management Consultancy and Change. We will be linking up with an initiative with two other Scottish Universities entitled Making the Most of Masters. This funded programme supports students in their final dissertation which takes place with a local company and allows a consultancy role to be developed with a final presentation to company managers and academic staff involved.
Career development for postgraduates is too important to be left to chance. It must be an integral part of the course. We aim to ensure that this takes place at the University of Aberdeen Business School.
Dr Julian Randall