The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

Friday, 20 August 2010

Siberian students on course at University of West of Scotland

A GROUP of students from the Siberian State Transport University (SSTU) recently got a unique insight into Scotland’s transport industry as part of a two-week course they undertook at the University of the West of Scotland’s Management Centre in Ayr.

The 11 business students were joined by three of their tutors during their time at UWS and benefited from the University’s business expertise, undertaking a two-week (11-23 July 2010) course covering finance, economics and English as a foreign language. The final year students are all sponsored by Russian Railways for whom they will work as managers after graduating.

As part of the course, UWS organised a day of industry visits on 20 July to the Glasgow offices of the Atkins Group plc and Transport Scotland, to give the group practical, real-world experience of the transport industry in Scotland.

Atkins is the UK's largest engineering and design consultancy and the world's 11th largest design firm. The group was welcomed to the company’s Glasgow offices by Atkins Director, John Foley, and UWS Executive MBA alumnus, Kim Irvine, who gave an overview of Atkins and its activities.

The group then undertook a site visit (pictured above) to the nearby £445 million M74 Completion project in Glasgow, for which Atkins, in a joint venture with Jacobs Engineering Group Inc, was awarded the design and construction services. Interlink M74 Joint Venture and ScotRail representatives gave a detailed walking tour of part of the five-mile project which will complete a vital part of Scotland’s motorway network, and forms part of a major infrastructure investment in Scotland’s transport network.

The group also visited Transport Scotland’s Glasgow offices on the day. This visit, which was co-ordinated by Alasdair Macleod, Business Manager for Rail Delivery at Transport Scotland, saw presentations on Rail Delivery by Jason Pearce; Strategy & Investment by Laurence Kenney and Major Transport Infrastructure Projects by Dominic Murphy. The strategic presentations were followed by question and answer sessions.

The previous week George Fiddes, Team Leader of Transportation and Traffic at South Ayrshire Council, visited the University’s Management Centre in Ayr and gave the group an overview of the South Ayrshire Local Transport Strategy as well as an insight into rail operations in the west coast of Scotland.

Eithne McGilvray of University of the West of Scotland’s Business School said: “The University has strong industry links and a successful track record of delivering business courses for a variety of organisations. We are delighted to work with SSTU and are very grateful to Atkins Group, Transport Scotland and South Ayrshire Council for the industry perspective they provided. The Siberian students and their tutors found these visits very informative and they were a highlight of their study trip to Scotland.”

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