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£111k Business sports scholarship under starters orders

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Minister Farry announces the Business Sports Scholarship programme at the Ulster Business School helped by Michael McQuillan, Director of the Business Institute and participants Shirley McKay, Ireland hockey team member and Richie Smith former Ulster Elks basketball player
Emma Cowan on September 5, 2014 - 1:19 pm in News

Employment and Learning Minister Dr Stephen Farry has launched a new £111k scholarship programme at the University of Ulster’s Business School to boost careers in the global sports industry.

Sport ConneX, a network of businesses with a sports focus, in partnership with SkillsActive, identified a need for skills training for people wishing to pursue a career in sports related businesses. Together they successfully sought funding from the Department for Employment and Learning and subsequently commissioned the Ulster Business School to deliver the programme.

Minister Farry said, “I commend the University, Sport ConneX and SkillsActive in addressing a skills need through collaborative working and delivering this training. This project increases the management skills and employability of graduates and enhances their prospects of a career in the sports industry. Life and Health Sciences, which is part of the STEM family, are important to the growth of the Northern Ireland economy. My Department continues to support this sector through the Skills Collaboration Fund and has provided £111,000 funding for this project.”

Fifty participants will undertake the programme which has been tailor-made by the Business Institute at the Ulster Business School, and which will run over two sessions from September 2014 to March 2015. The leadership development programme will be practically orientated and aim to equip participants with the appropriate knowledge and skills to enable them to develop their existing leadership potential and to carve out a sustainable business or career in the growing global sports industry.

Sports ConneX Chair Harry Porter said, “As a collaborative network established to foster growth and development of commercial opportunity in a global market worth $400 billion we are delighted to work with the Department of Employment & Learning, Skillsactive and the Ulster Business School to develop future business leaders in our sector.  Today marks the start of an innovative programme that will bring talented individuals together with innovative local companies to enhance and strengthen Northern Ireland’s position in world sport.”

Comprising facilitated workshops, sector specific inspirational speakers, best practice visits and real life/work based assignments the programme aims to develop competencies which will stimulate innovation and entrepreneurship in the business sports sector. On completion the participants will receive the Advanced Certificate in Management Practice.

Vice Chancellor for the University of Ulster, Professor Richard Barnett added, “The global sports industry is thriving. As it continues to grow, so will the demand for a talented and employment-ready workforce. The University of Ulster prides itself on delivering learning in response to industry needs. Through the scholarship programme, participants will focus on developing leadership and management skills that will help them innovate and compete successfully in this lucrative and rapidly growing sports industry.”



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