London visit provides mix of academic knowledge, employer insights and networking opportunities

By Bandana Harlalka, MBA student

The Full-time MBA class of 2020 were in London from Jan 20th to Jan 24th, taking classes in microeconomics at the Work Foundation and hosting networking activities co-organized with the MBA staff. Microeconomics was taught over two days by Professor Geraint Johnes, whom many alumni will remember from their year on the Full-time Lancaster MBA programme.

On Jan 22nd at Canary Wharf, there was a discussion panel on digital innovation leadership, finishing with a networking session allowing the MBA cohort to connect with students from other universities and people working in diverse industries and sectors. The next day a presentation was given by a business analyst and risk management team from Fitch Ratings, at their office at One Canada Square in Canary Wharf. There was a detailed talk on how they provide ratings to companies located in different countries.

Back at the Work Foundation Andy Moore, from PwC, provided insights on external and internal audits carried out in companies by the ‘Big 4’ and how key significance lay in the ‘trust of the management’. There were also speakers from Gobeyond (Andy Smith) and Piper Private Equity (Rory Gibbs – Investment Director) who discussed the potential employment opportunities at their organisations.

Ashleigh Dueker and Dominic Roberts (LUMS MBA alumni), who are current employees of Grant Thornton, gave a wonderful presentation about the work they carry out at GT and the responsibilities of a ‘Consultant’. It was very inspiring and motivating to see the journey of Dominic Roberts from being a recent MBA student to working at Grant Thornton as a Special Project Manager. Following the presentation there was a two-hour networking session, which was a great opportunity for the MBA cohort to interact closely with companies such as Grant Thornton, Curve, Slalom and Spotahome, to strengthen their contacts.

The last event of the day was at NatWest’s office located at Islington High Street, London, hosted by Steve Chown, manager of Entrepreneurial Innovation (NatWest’s Fintech Accelerator Hub). This was a unique experience where Steve and his colleague presented on the significance of starting a firm and bringing innovation to life.

Indeed, the Lancaster MBA had a wonderful week-long experience giving great opportunity for the cohort to host, interact and explore new career options through networking sessions. Special thanks to LUMS MBA career staff Andy Bagshaw for making all the effort to reach out to potential employers and alumni to benefit the ongoing MBA batch of 2019-2020. His hard work, assisted by Dr Robyn Remke, Debbie Stubbs and Caitlin Fielding whose constant efforts in organizing events for MBA students is commendable, was much appreciated.