Winners on the road to MBAs

Russ Thorne discovers what brought two successful scholarship applicants to the Durham Business School

Last week, Durham Business School awarded the first two
of three MBA scholarships that will be offered to students this year. Given to
students on the Global and Executive MBA programmes the full-fee scholarships are
organised in partnership with The Independent
this year will be the seventh time they have been awarded.

“We believe in creating an environment in which academic excellence can be combined with opportunities for personal development,” says Lindsay Duke, postgraduate student recruitment manager at Durham Business School. “This is why we’re pleased to be able to offer scholarships such as this to top-quality candidates who can demonstrate their commitment and potential.”

To be considered for a scholarship, prospective students had to write a 500-word essay outlining not just what an MBA would do for them, but what they would bring to the MBA programme. Judges assessed their CVs alongside their academic ability, and also looked for leadership potential – trickier for the panel of industry experts to measure but vital for success in the workplace.

“An MBA is often a minimum qualification for more senior roles as it helps managers develop their skills and knowledge outside of existing specialisms to work across the organisation,”

says Professor Rob Dixon, dean at Durham Business School.

“The scholarship competition attracts some exceptional applicants and gives people the chance to study an MBA when they may have previously been unable to fund their place.”

Funding was certainly on David Makepeace’s mind when he wrote his essay. “I’m working part-time to give myself ample study time, so self-funding would have been challenging.”

Winner of the Global MBA scholarship, Makepeace has spent his entire career in the humanitarian sector and now works with a non-profit organisation based in Australia; he will study via distance learning. His particular field of interest and expertise is logistics, which he feels is underdeveloped in humanitarian work, wasting money that could be better spent on aid. “I’ve made it a personal mission to try to help address this problem,” he says, “and the Durham MBA will be an important tool in that respect. The learning will itself be invaluable and the MBA will also help leverage greater credibility from corporate networks.”

In the short term, Makepeace hopes the Global MBA will make a difference to his current work; longer term, he has an eye on more senior management positions where he’ll be able to have a greater impact. “The scholarship will help tremendously because it will allow me to dedicate myself even more to my studies,” he says. “It will literally buy me time.”

David Beeton, winner of the Executive MBA scholarship, hopes that his MBA will help him expand his new business as well as aid his personal development. “Starting up my business has given me an opportunity to create my own future,” he says. “I’m determined to equip myself with the necessary tools and see the Durham MBAs providing an important platform to success.”

Previously a senior strategist for an electric vehicle programme, Beeton was made redundant when regional development agencies were abolished.

He used his skills and redundancy payment to establish a successful new business, but he’s far from complacent. “While the future looks extremely positive, previous experience has alerted me to the famine-and-feast cycles often experienced by start-ups and the consequent financial and emotional pressures that this brings,” he says.

He enrolled on the MBA programme to help prepare himself, but also to benefit from the alternative viewpoints an MBA can offer. “The opportunity to remove myself from the business and be afforded intellectual freedom to reflect on where it’s heading will be invaluable,” he says. “I also expect that engaging with likeminded individuals from diverse backgrounds will bring new perspectives to the fore.”

For those interested in following Beeton and Makepeace down the MBA route, the final Independent/ Durham Business School scholarship competition, for the full-time MBA course, will open in April. Visit www.dur.ac.uk/dbs for more details, and for information on other scholarships offered by the school.

News
A model of a Neanderthal man on display at the National Museum of Prehistory in Dordogne, France
science
News
Richard Dawkins dedicated his book 'The Greatest Show on Earth' to Josh Timonen
newsThat's Richard Dawkins on babies with Down Syndrome
Arts and Entertainment
Eye of the beholder? 'Concrete lasagne' Preston bus station
architectureWhich monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?
Extras
indybest
PROMOTED VIDEO
Travel
Dinosaurs Unleashed at the Eden Project
travel
Arts and Entertainment
music
Sport
football
Life and Style
This month marks the 20th anniversary of the first online sale
techDespite a host of other online auction sites and fierce competition from Amazon, eBay is still the most popular e-commerce site in the UK
News
i100
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Student

Quantitative Analyst (Financial Services, Graduate, SQL, VBA)

£45000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Quantitative Analyst (Financial Services, ...

Trainee Digital Forensic Analyst

£17000 - £18000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Trainee Digital Fo...

Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£18000 - £23000 per annum + OTE: SThree: Real Staffing Group is seeking Traine...

Technical Support Analyst

£23000 - £30000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client are cuu...

Day In a Page

Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape
eBay's enduring appeal: Online auction site is still the UK's most popular e-commerce retailer

eBay's enduring appeal

The online auction site is still the UK's most popular e-commerce site
Culture Minister Ed Vaizey: ‘lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird’

'Lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird'

Culture Minister Ed Vaizey calls for immediate action to address the problem
Artist Olafur Eliasson's latest large-scale works are inspired by the paintings of JMW Turner

Magic circles: Artist Olafur Eliasson

Eliasson's works will go alongside a new exhibition of JMW Turner at Tate Britain. He tells Jay Merrick why the paintings of his hero are ripe for reinvention
Josephine Dickinson: 'A cochlear implant helped me to discover a new world of sound'

Josephine Dickinson: 'How I discovered a new world of sound'

After going deaf as a child, musician and poet Josephine Dickinson made do with a hearing aid for five decades. Then she had a cochlear implant - and everything changed
Greggs Google fail: Was the bakery's response to its logo mishap a stroke of marketing genius?

Greggs gives lesson in crisis management

After a mishap with their logo, high street staple Greggs went viral this week. But, as Simon Usborne discovers, their social media response was anything but half baked
Matthew McConaughey has been singing the praises of bumbags (shame he doesn't know how to wear one)

Matthew McConaughey sings the praises of bumbags

Shame he doesn't know how to wear one. Harriet Walker explains the dos and don'ts of fanny packs
7 best quadcopters and drones

Flying fun: 7 best quadcopters and drones

From state of the art devices with stabilised cameras to mini gadgets that can soar around the home, we take some flying objects for a spin
Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

The midfielder returned to the Premier League after two years last weekend. The controversial character had much to discuss after his first game back
Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

British No 1 knows his consistency as well as his fitness needs working on as he prepares for the US Open after a ‘very, very up and down’ year
Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

A descent into madness in America's heartlands

David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home