Why study a part-time MBA at UCLan? Alumnus Stephen Nuttall shares his inspiring success story


Stephen NuttalI began my MBA at UCLan at the age of 54. I was the Business Operations Manager for Europe, the Middle East and Africa for a specialist department in one of the world’s largest IT corporations. I got this far without ever having gone to university – so why start now?

Well, like a lot of people, I like a challenge and I was always a bit disappointed that I’d never done a degree after technical college. Also, I was interested in picking up new information and skills that I could use in both my existing business ops role and in setting up my new business. I started to look around and realised that my experience and background would get me straight onto an MBA course without ever having done a bachelor’s degree. Knowing this, I went for it.

Having been out of full-time education for 34 years, the academic discipline took a bit of getting used to. But we had some great lecturers and we got to work in teams early on, meaning that I was supported by other students around me who also had full-time jobs. We studied a wide range of interesting and stimulating topics, and I had the opportunity to do some things that I’d have never done in my day job. For example, reviewing the sales and marketing options for new development at a cathedral was a highlight.

Between each academic year, we were given the option to do some additional study, through which I received a university certificate in management coaching. This greatly helped me in the teaching and mentoring of new entrants to the professional body I belong to (The Business Continuity Institute). The MBA course also gave me the chance to complete a dissertation. With the support of my tutors, I conducted research on formal business continuity standards and was able to get my work published in a professional journal – something I would never have imagined doing before coming to UCLan.

Just before starting my final year, I was diagnosed with cancer and needed to spend a lot of time in hospital or recovering. I took quite a lot of time off, but UCLan provided support and advice and kept in touch throughout. We all handle things differently, but being able to focus on completing my MBA definitely helped me through this challenging time.

We don’t always know what we have inside us until someone helps us to achieve our potential. For me, the UCLan part-time MBA was an incredible learning experience and an enlightening personal journey. It has opened up new opportunities as well as being an extremely fulfilling experience in itself. Not to mention that the staff at UCLan are great and the facilities, especially the library, are outstanding. I would recommend this course to anyone. So, what are you waiting for?

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