The Open University Business School honours outstanding student achievement

The Open University Business School’s annual awards took place at the House of Commons on Friday 18 June, recognising the outstanding achievements of its students. The award recipients include an international MBA student and young mother who transformed a small national tourism show in Moscow into the second largest international travel show in Russia.

Martina Stenech, who collected the award for MBA Student of the Year sponsored by the Chartered Management Institute, originally worked as project and sales manager for MSI Fairs and Exhibitions. She was promoted to Business Director of the Vienna office in 2005, managing 20 employees, developing new business and supporting the growth of existing exhibitions.

Martina made the decision to study for her MBA with The Open University Business School as she wanted to strengthen her business skills and better understand the complexities of her industry. She said: “What changed a lot was my way of working due to the input from my studies. Especially applying tools and strategies, including the team at different levels and believing that change and innovation were the only way to maintain and grow the business.

“I believe in the contribution The Open University Business School can make to an individual. Many people questioned the value of an MBA for a young mother. Although managing a child, a job and studying was not always easy, it has given me enormous confidence. “

Jenny Hogg, winner of the Derek Pugh Award for Certificate in Management Student of the Year, had been promoted to line manager and shortly after was asked to join her employer’s management team. She had no previous experience of personnel management, finance or marketing and felt she needed a basic understanding to competently fulfil the responsibilities of her new role. Since completing the Certificate in Management she found she could review the company’s accounts with a much clearer understanding. Jenny said “The course content perfectly met my needs and the outline tutorials fitted in well with my lifestyle.”

Professor James Fleck, Dean of The Open University Business School said, “These awards give us the chance to commend the commitment and determination of our students. Part-time practice based learning is sometimes wrongly seen as the lesser option to traditional business education. However, those who successfully complete distance learning qualifications find themselves far better prepared for the very real challenges in the business environment, just like Martina and Jenny.”

The award winners were as follows:
* Caelie Butcher - Sally Aisbitt Award for Accounting Student of the Year
* Jennifer Ashton - Rosie Thomson Award for Diploma Student of the Year
* Jenny Hogg - Derek Pugh Award for Certificate in Management Student of the Year
* Jim Alan Yates - Alumnus of the Year
* Martina Stenech - MBA Student of the Year, sponsored by CMI
* Rebecca Chadwick - BA in Business Studies, Student of the Year
* Stephen Godrich - Open University Business School Tutor of the Year
* Suzanne O'Donnell - OU Centre for Law Student of the Year
* BAE Systems - Open University Centre for Professional Learning and Development award for ‘Innovation in Professional Development’

Recently The Open University Business School secured its reaccreditation by AACSB (Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business the accreditation agency for bachelors, masters and doctoral degree programs in business administration and accounting), making it one of just 42 business schools worldwide to hold the triple endorsement for quality.

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