The world of business is vast – exciting and complex in equal measures – and if you’re considering what to do at university then a stint at business school can be very valuable.
Whether your goal is to embark on a certain career, start up your own business or help those less fortunate, going to business school can help you achieve that.
The experts from Nottingham Business School at Nottingham Trent University reveal the things you should consider when you choose your school.
Find a degree which aids your ambitions
Choosing your degree is a big life decision so why try and shoehorn yourself into a course that doesn’t really do what you want?
Professor Baback Yazdani, Dean of Nottingham Business School, says: “We recognise that every student is different. You will have your own aims and goals, different passions, and thrive in varied environments so it is important to choose a school and course that helps you nurture that.”
Links to successful and experienced businesses
The best business schools are going to be the ones which work closely with businesses and organisations the world over, constantly building links and creating opportunities for graduates. Nottingham Business School has worked with the likes of Microsoft, Rolls Royce, Mercedes Benz F1, Boots and Lidl to name but a few.
The school is also a member of the Confederation of British Industry and the Chartered Management Institute as well as having a high percentage of its courses accredited by official bodies.
Jonathan Burnett, studying BA (Hons) Business, says: “The school provides an excellent environment for learning and development in both academic and professional qualities. Whilst I have furthered my theoretical knowledge by working towards completing my undergrad I have also enjoyed placement opportunities at both Sky and Unilever.”
Choose a school that’s got kudos
You’d be pretty annoyed if you spent all that time studying, only to find the university or school you chose is about as popular in industry as cold porridge. Accreditation isn’t sexy or exciting but it is important and you should pick a business school which has approval from notable organisations.
Nottingham Business School has been nominated for Business School of Year in the Times Higher Education Awards this year and is in the top 5% of business schools worldwide to receive accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.
The undergraduate courses are also accredited by professional bodies including the Chartered Management Institute (CMI), the Association of Chartered Certificate Accountants (ACCA) and the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) providing students with more than just a degree after they graduate.
Look for a school that’s leading the way
Business is innovative and constantly evolving so when you pick your degree you want a business school that is right at the front of new developments.
Look for a school with a strong research element because you know they will have lecturers who are working on projects you won’t have come across before. Nottingham, unlike other business schools provides you with arrange of opportunities to personalise your learning experience, helping you to shape your degree to your career aspirations.
Andrew Marshall, who is studying BA (Hons) Business Management and Entrepreneurship, says: “This year I have been involved in so many extra-curricular activities put on by the business school from studying in Dijon to taking part in the National Apprenticeship Challenge. There is a wealth of opportunities and resources that are readily available to students, it has been a pleasure to study at NBS.”
Post course employability
Every uni will claim to have great employability but what does this really mean? You want to make sure you look for a business school that genuinely does help the majority of its graduates find employment in the industries they want to be in. Nottingham is the first business school in the UK to run a pilot competition with Sqore, an online recruitment platform that connects students to employers through skill-based competitions.
The school also boasts a graduate employment rate of 94% within six months of graduation.
The success of past alumni
If a friend recommended a restaurant to you, chances are you’d try it out at some point. Likewise, if they said it was rubbish, you’d probably never even give it a go. Think about applying those same principles to business school. Look at past alumni to see who has graduated from there and what they have done.
Nottingham Business School enjoys an alumni network of thousands of people around the globe and Selasi Gbormittah from Bake Off, Nick Beighton, CEO of ASOS, Olympic hockey bronze medallist Crista Cullen and Valentina Kaiser, a financial management associate at Ernst & Young, have all studied there.
Quality of student life
Strictly speaking this could apply to lots of degrees but you need to look at how happy you’re going to be somewhere while you study.
Look for a school that provides a full range of financial, mental, health and wellbeing services as well as extensive extra-curricular activities. Check out what other students say about studying there and take a look for yourself. After all, if you feel comfortable in the environment, the chances are it will be a good fit for your studies.
Eline Cartry, an exchange student from France studying BA (Hons) International Business, says: “Before coming here I did not know the city or university so I did not know what to expect. I didn’t expect Nottingham to have as many students as it has. What I like most is the city is not too big or small, there are so many things to do and the nightlife is varied giving you plenty of choice.”
The location you study in can be just as important as the business school itself. Is it in a vibrant city with lots going to both support your learning and entertain you when you relax? Nottingham is not only affordable for students but has received awards six years in a row for having the best nightlife. There is also plenty of history to explore and the legendary Sherwood Forest is just a short drive away.