Durham's MBA students share their expertise
(7 April 2010)
MBA students at Durham Business School are putting their learning to good use, helping local charities achieve their goals.
As part of a new three-day Leadership Development Project and working in small groups, students are paired with a local charity, in order to offer their help, advice and expertise. Seven voluntary organisations took part including Grease Monkeys, a community organisation based in Durham’s Deerness Valley.
Andrea Watts, who set up the charity, said “this has proved to be a wonderful opportunity for Grease Monkeys, the recommendations and encouragement we’ve received from the students and the School has been inspiring.” Andrea was paired with MBA students Aizan, Yasmin and Charles who, following discussions and visits to the premises, presented their findings to her at Durham Business School.
Based at ‘Andrea’s Autos’ the business owned by Andrea and her husband, Grease Monkeys was set up in 2009. Initially running only on Friday evenings, it was aimed at providing youngsters with an opportunity to gain some practical mechanical skills along with building their confidence. In time, interest and support grew and they now run activities incorporating a range of topics such as mechanics, health and safety and communication skills at their Skills Centre. Andrea is also trained to deliver the ASDAN Experience of Work Award, which has proved popular with several of the schools in the area.
Initial feedback from the students and the charities has been very positive and the school is planning to evolve the initiative further next year.