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Aston to launch manufacturing management MBA

The industry-leading Manufacturing Technology Centre near Coventry is to launch a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree in manufacturing management. The 30-month course is aimed at providing high level management skills in UK manufacturing.

Run in partnership with Aston Business School, one of the original pioneers of degree apprenticeships, the course is targeted at senior leaders and managers in manufacturing companies and is fully-funded with the host company’s apprenticeship levy.

It is understood to be the UK’s first levy-funded MBA tailored specifically for the manufacturing sector, which has been affected more than most by rising skills shortages.

The course will have intakes in January and April, with up to 15 students admitted in each cohort. Applicants will be required to have a UK honours degree, a degree level professional qualification, or extensive experience in a manufacturing company.

The course includes four weekend residential workshops at Aston Business School, along with online learning support and interactive learning sets. Core modules include finance, customer value, operations management, productivity, strategic management and product launch. Optional modules include advanced strategy, international business, procurement, supply chain management and programme management.

Students will have access to the world-leading advanced manufacturing facilities at the MTC, and visiting lecturers on the course will include the MTC’s manufacturing experts.

Paul Rowlett, managing director of the MTC’s Advanced Manufacturing Training Centre, said the MTC MBA gave students the flexibility of learning around work and personal commitments, with on-campus learning, and access to the UK’s leading industry academics and the MTC’s manufacturing experts.

He said: “As well as the obvious benefits to the student it will allow companies to maximise their levy and develop their senior managers, helping them develop and retain talent, as well as maximising their business impact of their training investment. This ultimately affects the business performance and productivity of their organisation.”

Simon Finley, Associate Dean for MBA, Apprenticeship and Online Programmes at Aston Business School, said ensuring senior leaders are trained in effective leadership and management techniques is vital to unlocking an organisation’s untapped productivity and growth.

He said: “Management and leadership skills are not a gift that people are just born with. It requires nurturing and development, and this new MBA provides the applied, experiential learning that is required to be a successful senior leader.

“The evidence shows that management ability is strongly linked to business productivity, yet only one in five managers have benefitted from a formal qualification or training. Paid for via the apprenticeship levy, our new partnership with the MTC gives manufacturers access to one of the world’s highest ranked MBA programmes and the best advanced manufacturing facilities the UK has to offer.”

Aston University was one of the first universities in the country to run degree apprenticeship programmes. It now offers several level 6 and 7 programmes to increase skills in the sectors that most need them, including audiology, electrical engineering, management and digital technology.

The MTC was founded by the University of Birmingham, Loughborough University, the University of Nottingham and TWI Ltd. The MTC’s industrial members include some of the UK’s major global manufacturers.

The MTC aims to provide a competitive environment to bridge the gap between university-based research and the development of innovative manufacturing solutions, in line with the Government’s manufacturing strategy. The MTC is part the High Value Manufacturing Catapult, supported by Innovate UK.

Anyone interested in applying for the MTC MBA should contact Webinars, run jointly between the MTC and Aston Business School will be available on October 3 and 10th at 12 noon, and October 17 and 24 at 6pm.

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