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Full-time MBA students visit Hitachi

Students on our Full-time MBA programme recently joined Dr Joanna Berry, Associate Professor of Entrepreneurship, on a visit to Hitachi in Newton Aycliffe. The students looked around Hitachi to get an insider’s perspective on the supply chains, project management and logistics required to ensure that the trains get from shell products delivered by lorry to the factory, to fully equipped trains across the length and breadth of the UK.

The visit provided opportunities that are very close to the heart of the School including internationalisation and the importance of a global perspective on our students' current and future workplaces. It also conveyed the importance of diversity and equality across the STEM subjects and in business in general plus the ability of our students to translate theory into practice using real-life examples, such as the learning from this visit. Joanna explains more about the visit below:

"When we arrived at Hitachi, we headed upstairs for our health and safety briefing and a short background on the trains we were going to see – the AT200 and AT400 – the Azuma and the Crossrail.

After following our guide Faye Hutton (one of an increasing number of women Hitachi are determined to get into the railway workforce) across the floor of Hitachi’s massive factory we were able to spend some time looking around the insides of these trains whilst the Hitachi crew worked on filling up the shells with seats, toilets, and drivers cabin equipment.

We were taken to the turnaround pad where the trains were moved from warehouse to railway, and talked through the whole process from start to finish – from supply chain input to the eventual testing (which can take up to 4 months) and installation of the new trains in their rightful places on the national network.

Students and staff enjoyed the experience thoroughly – Hitachi were so welcoming and, as there were no secret projects underway, we were free to take lots of pictures (some of these can be seen on the School's social media channels along with a team photo of our students and Faye with the apprentice-guides who helped to show us round).

As one of our students commented, it was great to see a top class, international-scale manufacturing supply chain brought to life in such an immediate and meaningful way; we hope to return to Hitachi again next year."

For more information on our MBA programmes, please click here.